How to Respond to Negative Reviews on Google

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Negative reviews are never fun, especially when you have poured your blood, sweat and tears into your business. However, poor customer feedback can also be a learning experience. Instead of letting negative website reviews sour your mood, you could use the feedback as a means to improve how your business communicates with its clients. Although, you should be careful how you respond. A misstep could lead to further negative commentary from a disgruntled reviewer. To help you avoid such conflicts, our legal marketing agency has created a quick guide. Here is how to respond to negative reviews on Google.

Ways to Respond to Negative Reviews on Google

  • Be quick to respond. Did you know that many people who post a negative review are looking for a quick response? Some reviewers may even expect a response within the hour. Therefore, it is important to put together an organized, professional and polite response as soon as you are aware of a review. Keep ahead of the game by regularly checking the email account connected to your Google My Business listing. You can also set up Google Alerts so you can get extra reminders about your reviews on Google and other sites. As soon as you see a new review, it is time to get to work figuring out how to respond.
  • Show appreciation with sympathy. It is crucial that you recognize the reviewer’s concerns, otherwise, they could feel ignored. Show sympathy if the reviewer is having a negative experience. In some cases, the person may even remove the negative review if you show sympathy and try to resolve the situation. Stay polite and professional, letting your own emotions take control of your response is a bad idea. Remember that your client is already emotionally stirred enough to post a review. It is important to deescalate, and sympathetic words are key to this process.
  • Insert a marketing statement. What is the client experience at your business usually like? Explain the usual experience under better circumstances. “We’re normally known for our…” This further proves that you don’t take the negative review lightly and will take steps to fix the problem. This not only helps to appease your disgruntled client, but it may also show potential clients that you are open to listening to their input.
  • Move the conversation offline. Give the reviewer the contact information of someone at your business so he or she can directly discuss the issue with someone at your company. This shows that your business is committed to helping clients and improving its business.
  • Keep your response short, simple and sweet. There’s no need to go into too much detail in your response. Doing so could upset the customer and may lead to more negative feedback. Your reply should only be a few sentences. Have more to say? As mentioned above, give the reviewer your contact information.
  • What if the review is fake? Sometimes internet trolls strike with a fake or misleading review. In these situations, it is important not to engage. These individuals are simply looking to start trouble and get attention. If you see a fake or misleading review, reach out to Google to get the review removed. The faster you act, the more likely it is that Google will remove the review.
  • Take action. If the review you received is real, it is also important to understand that you should take what the reviewer said seriously. This is especially true if their complaint is similar to criticisms made by other clients. Take steps to correct the shortcomings the reviewer pointed out to you. This can help you build positive reviews down the line.
Remember, treat feedback as a learning experience that can improve your business. Depending on how you respond to negative feedback, you may be able to prevent future negative reviews by avoiding the same mistakes. And if you need help handling the complexities of managing your Google reviews, our creative agency is ready to help. MediaSmack offers a wide array of digital marketing services that fit the needs of law firms and small businesses across the nation. DesignRush, Forbes and Inc. have recognized our quality service and knowledge. Learn even more about digital marketing and engaging your audience by following our SEO blog.
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