Deciding whether to take a negative review seriously could mean a lot of time saved or it could mean the complete turnaround of your online reputation. 67% of customers say negative reviews influence their buying decisions. It’s uncommon to come under threat from the attacks of haters, but sometimes the haters have a point.
There are no hard and fast rules for when you should react to negative reviews and when you should bury your head in the sand. Certain reviews don’t dignify a response, whereas others need to be addressed before they cause a lot of damage.
One of the harsh realities of entrepreneurship is that negative feedback does happen. You are going to learn about some of the tips to knowing when you need to take negative feedback to heart.
Does it Contain Abuse?
The first test to perform is to determine whether a review is just plain abusive. If there are any unwarranted insults or profanity, that brings an instant lack of credit to the reviewer. Few people are going to take someone like this seriously, and so it poses no threat.
Some customers are reactive and the moment they believe they have been slighted they become aggressive and abusive. This is good news for you because they pose no threat to your online reputation. In fact, they are only coming off as silly.
Who Does the Review Come From?
Over time, you will start to know your customers by name. They will leave feedback on every product or service you release because they love your brand. In the event you receive negative feedback from them, you know you need to react immediately.
When a negative review comes from a loyal customer, this is a telltale sign that it’s time to act. Not replying promptly to someone in this position sends the message that you don’t care what you have to say. It could cost you a loyal customer.
That doesn’t mean reviews from new customers are irrelevant, but regulars are always going to be more important.
The Regular Complainers
As your brand grows, you will continually come up against the regular complainer. These are the people who have hated your product from the very beginning yet for some unexplainable reason they continue to keep buying. You can do nothing right and nothing you say will make them feel any better.
If you are unlucky enough to come up against one of these people, your only option is to ignore them. You are wasting your time and energy because you know that you can never make them feel better. They have no interest in your solutions.
What are they Complaining About?
Your product and your level of service are the two main aspects you should search for in any negative review. They are what make or break your company.
There are so many online reputations destroyed through bad products. You can make changes to your product, but you have to do it fast. Speed is of the essence because if a few people have complained this is but a fraction of the number that experienced the same problems.
It’s why corporations tend to move quickly to release new versions of their products.
The other main aspect of a complaint you need to look for are complaints about your level of customer service. If customers believe they have been slighted, even a great product won’t save you. Studies have shown that customers are willing to pay more for great service.
If you are receiving complaints about customer service, you know that you have to make urgent changes.
Should You See Negative Reviews as a Bad Thing?
Negative reviews can cause a lot of problems for companies. CEOs should always take negative reviews into account, but some are more critical than others. It isn’t always necessary to react in a bad way to online reviews because sometimes they can be a huge boon to your company.
For a start, they add credibility and can increase conversions. If your company only has positive reviews, people are going to assume that you bought them. It’s unnatural to have 100% positive feedback. Furthermore, you should see online reviews as an opportunity to grow. You are finding flaws that you missed before, and they are ultimately going to help you build a better product.
Knowing when to reply to negative reviews and when to disregard them is an important skill. You don’t want to waste your time and effort on haters who provide little to no value for your organization. You want to focus on those people whom actually matter.
What are your experiences with online reviews?