responding to online reviews

Responding to Reviews Online for Field Services

Having a robust online presence on Google and other major search engines are essential in securing new customers for your home services business. Once they’ve done their research and found your business, chances are they’ll check your reviews. According to Qualtrics, customers are willing to spend 31% more on a company with excellent reviews. Also, 93% of customers say that online reviews influence their decisions.

With statistics like these, online reviews are an essential part of your business that cannot be overlooked.

One thing is for sure — not everyone will be pleased with everything you do. Bad reviews are inevitable, and the way you respond to them matters also.

Why Does Responding to Reviews Matter? 

Potential customers are going to base their decisions on online reviews. In fact, 93% of customers read online reviews for local businesses. They’re looking to see if your company has reviews, how many you have, how highly you’re rated, and any negative feedback.

It’s not just about how many reviews you have and how highly rated you are; customers also want to see if you respond and how you respond. If you’re not responding to reviews, you may lose business by driving potential customers away. If you’re planning to get ahead of your competition, then responding to reviews is an excellent opportunity to do so.

So, how should your company respond to online reviews — positive and negative?

How to Respond to Negative Reviews

Every business works to provide a good service or product for its customers. However, when someone leaves a bad review, it can cause frustration and offense. No matter what, you can’t please everyone, and a negative review doesn’t necessarily mean that your product or service is bad.

How you respond to a negative review is what matters, and it can redeem your company in the eyes of the customer who didn’t enjoy your product or service. 45% of customers are likely to visit a business that responds to bad reviews. Of those customers who leave negative reviews, 43% would change their review if satisfied with a company’s response.

Here’s how to respond to a negative review:

  1. Thank the customer for leaving a review and buying the product or service. 
  2. Acknowledge their concern or issue, and apologize for their unsatisfactory experience. 
  3. Express your enthusiasm to alleviate the situation and make it right. 
  4. Provide the necessary information so the customer can contact you directly to discuss their experience.  

Keep in mind to avoid taking things personally when responding to negative reviews. Remember, your response is public, and your tone can damage your reputation and push away potential customers. 

To take it a step further, it might be beneficial to throw in an incentive. Provide your unhappy customers with priority scheduling or a discount on their next service.

How to Respond to Positive Reviews 

You might be wondering if there’s a point in responding to positive reviews. The customer is satisfied with the product or service, so there’s no need. However, this isn’t a good mindset to have, as it can make you look unappreciative. 

People love to be appreciated and acknowledged, and it’s the same for your customers.

When responding to positive reviews, personalization comes into play. Personalization is meaningful as it shows that you care about their personal experience. So, when responding, be sure to personalize your response by: 

  1. Addressing the reviewer by their name and thanking them for buying the product/service
  2. Highlighting details from the review in your reply 

Positive reviews are also a great way to market your business. While responding to reviews, you can highlight an upcoming promotion, offer another service or product to complement their previous purchase or ask for referrals. 

Keep in mind to respond to positive reviews in a timely manner. A quick response reflects well on your company and makes the customer more likely to remember your company and recommend it to others. 

How to Respond to Neutral Reviews

Sometimes you’ll get a review that contains both praise and criticism. It can be tough to decide what to do with these, as they leave you in a weird spot. To effectively respond to a neutral review, you’ll need to address the good and bad.

  1. Thank the customer for buying your product or service and for leaving feedback. 
  2. Highlight the good points in their review. 
  3. Acknowledge and apologize for the negatives that they experienced. 
  4. Provide your contact information in case they want to discuss the service further. 

How to Ask Customers To Leave a Review

It’s best to make it a habit to ask for reviews. Although it may be uncomfortable at first, it shows that you appreciate their feedback, and it allows you to see what is and isn’t working. According to a recent local consumer review by BrightLocal, 76% of people will leave a review when asked. 

To make this easier on your company, create an email or SMS text template to send to customers once their service is completed. Keep these tips in mind when creating your template: 

  • Keep your email or text short; try not to go over three sentences. 
  • Always thank the customer, encourage honest feedback, and let them know that their review matters. 
  • Provide links to where they can leave their review. 

Ensure that you’re responding quickly, showing appreciation for their service, and acknowledging any concerns or issues they may have. 

Conclusion

To conclude, positive and negative reviews have the power to make or break your business. More importantly, how you respond to them is what matters the most. Regardless of what kind of review you receive, whether positive, negative, or neutral, your response can help usher in new customers, bring an unhappy customer back to your business, and can help you gain an advantage over your competitors. 

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