Why (and How) You Should Respond to Negative Reviews

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How to Respond to Negative Reviews

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, your company’s reviews and ratings are important to acquire new customers. If your product has many negative reviews, it’s unlikely that potential customers will be ready to purchase without first checking the reviews of your competitors. 

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 allows you 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. When responding to negative reviews, you must take a few steps to ensure your emotions don’t get the best of you. 

Why (and How) You Should Respond to Negative Reviews
Why (and How) You Should Respond to Negative Reviews

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 in responding to negative reviews is updating your response with the resolution status. You should include a scannable status recap, whether you are attempting to resolve or the situation has been resolved. 

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. 

Tips for Why Responding to Negative Reviews
Tips for Why Responding to Negative Reviews

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