Negative reviews are an inescapable element of every business. Just as the most famous paintings in the world are not appreciated by all and even criticized by some. Unlike the painter, however, your business is still a work in progress and your response to negative feedback is important.
First off, the reviews and ratings your company garners are important to acquire new customers. If your product has a large number of negative reviews, it’s unlikely potential customers will be ready to make a purchase without first checking the reviews of your competitors.
In fact, 86% of customers read reviews, most often upwards of 10 reviews, before making a purchase. Fortunately, customer feedback is an open discussion and not a one-way monologue. A review gives you the opportunity to connect and converse with your customers, and even a chance to retain them moving forward.
How to Respond to Negative Reviews
Criticism hurts. As the owner and operator, this business is your life’s work and hearing dissatisfied customers complain can feel like a punch to the gut. There are a few steps you must take when responding to negative reviews to ensure your emotions don’t get the best of you.
Below are things you must include in your response to a negative review:
- Acknowledge the issue
- Apologize for the problem
- Show empathy and understanding
- Avoid confrontation and take the conversation outline
- Take steps to remedy the situation
- Graciously thank the customer for their feedback
One of the biggest factors of responding to negative reviews is to update your response with the status of a resolution. Whether you are attempting to resolve or the situation has been resolved, you should include a scannable recap of the status.
Below is the full visual from Housecall Pro with templates for responding to negative reviews. This piece covers the anatomy of the perfect response to a negative review including all the bullets listed above.
Why (and How) You Should Respond to Negative Reviews