As search engines increasingly give ranking consideration to online reviews and other social media indicators, businesses need to understand the importance of cultivating online relationships with clients. With this need to be social comes fear of what consumers will post about a business online. Sure, positive comments from happy, satisfied customers are a sure-fire way to impress future clients and gain their trust. But, what about the rare unhappy client who posts a negative comment for all to see?
Although negative reviews may seem like the kryptonite to your superhero brand, they can actually be a benefit to your online marketing efforts. In fact, the way you respond to the concerns of an unsatisfied customer may bring you more business. Here’s why:
Negative Reviews Show the Human Side of Your Business
Yes, every business would like to believe that they are perfect and each customer leaves with a smile; however, this is not reality. Businesses are not run by machines. They’re run by people. And people make mistakes—a fact that every business owner should take into account.
When you or one of your employees makes an error, an unhappy customer may write a negative review. This is not the end to your business dreams! A few negative reviews in a sea of positive reviews can actually prove your company to be more trustworthy than one with nothing but positive comments. Most people find it a bit suspicious when no one has a negative experience to post.
Negative Reviews Show Where Businesses Can Improve
After reading a negative review, your business now knows the areas in need of improvement. Thank your clients for giving the necessary feedback by improving the overall shopping experience. Use the negative reviews you receive as a starting block for your customer service improvement initiative. The way in which you handle these negative comments will show that your company is willing to listen, learn, and grow.
Negative Reviewers are Not Lost Forever
We’ve all heard it—“I’m never shopping here again!” Whether you said it or heard it, that phrase is commonplace in the world of commerce. However, unsatisfied customers may be enticed to return if they see you are giving your best effort to regain their trust. First impressions may be important, but one bad experience doesn’t have to last forever.
Many business owners fear the repercussions of a negative online review, but all is not lost when one negative point hits the Web. Carefully manage your online reputation, diligently maintain your Web presence, and triumphantly improve from the feedback. See, negative reviews aren’t that scary!