Hey, it happens. No matter how good your products are or how hard you and your staff try; it is only a matter of time before you receive a bad review. It could be caused by a slip-up on your part or someone sabotaging your business; but bad reviews are the bane of your business’ existence. The worst part is, today, it only takes a few clicks to make negative reviews go viral.
The critical key to keeping customers truly happy and loyal is effectively managing, responding, and acting on a customer’s bad review. Read on to learn how to fix a bad Google review.
First, Let’s Talk Numbers
Here’s the bad news: customers who had a bad experience with a business would share their stories to anyone who would listen. In fact, researchers from the University of Nottingham say that 100% of unhappy customers will tell approximately 10 to 20 people about their bad experience.
The worse news: These studies were from before the internet made it very easy for anyone to give businesses a bad review. These studies also don’t account for the people who get a kick out of sabotaging businesses.
What can you do?
How to Fix a Bad Google Business Review
Remember, when customers leave a bad Google review, all they essentially want:
- is for their problem to be easy to report;
- is for their issues to be acknowledged; and
- for their concerns to be dealt with quickly, sensitively and fairly.
Almost all kinds of bad reviews can be fixed in 5 Steps.
- Anticipate – It’s not about whether or not you will receive a bad review because you will. The key is in anticipating it. If you anticipate it; you will not be surprised. And if you are not surprised; you will not act react emotionally. Emotions can make people do unfortunate things that can ruin the business’ reputation forever.
- Investigate – Analyse the situation. Attempt to contact that customer to try to find out the cause of the bad review. Ask the customer to provide you with details. This will encourage them to shift his focus to the facts instead of his/her feelings, helping you move towards a more rational conversation and eventually, a solution. If the review is fake, do a thorough investigation.
- Acknowledge – The most common response to a bad review is a defensive one. Don’t forget the customer’s basic need to be acknowledged. You must respond in an empathetic and clear manner; even when the review is fake. Responding serves two purposes: making the customer feel heard and understood, and; showing prospects that you care about your customers and that you respond to customer dissatisfaction promptly and compassionately.
- Assert – We can’t help it. Whether it’s a competitor, or someone you’ve wronged in the past, or just a troll without a fun past time; the internet is a haven for fakes. If during your investigation, you find out that the review is fake; then it is your right to flag the review, report it to Google, and ask them to take it down.
- Act – On the other hand, if the bad review is from a real customer who had experienced real dissatisfaction; then you must rectify your mistake. Act on the information you gathered and resolve the issue. If possible, work towards a solution with the customer herself/himself to make sure your expectations are aligned.
Despite sufficient marketing, the best products, good deals, or the best employees; things can go wrong. Products don’t meet expectations, deliveries arrive late, details can get lost, and humans make mistakes. Bad reviews are a part of any service activity but bad reviews are not the end of the world.
If you want to know how to fix a bad Google review; follow these simple steps. Used well, these steps can help boost not only customer satisfaction but customer loyalty. Read our recommendations how to improve your Google Business listing.