Although it may feel bad – those negative online reviews are actually a good thing for your business.
No, we haven’t completely lost our minds.
Gives You An Outside Perspective
It’s hard to know everything that’s going on with your business. You may have a rude employee in your company but have no clue they are abusing your customers. Personnel know (most of the time…) to behave in front of their boss, but can turn right around and rip off your customers, behave cruelly, and otherwise misrepresent the brand you work so hard to polish and run well.
Negative reviews give you an excellent opportunity to learn from your customers, and overall improve your business in the long run. Take a deep breath, read the review humbly, and don’t take to blaming the review writer immediately. Use it as a learning moment – that review may be the push you need to focus back on your company vision or that it’s time to enroll your employees in some training. After all, how can you grow if you don’t know what to improve?
Transparency Builds Trust
Advertisers started lying to the public ages ago. In reaction, shoppers are now skeptical of every single thing they read, sniffing for the lie behind a too-good-to-be-true promise. This phenomena is just as relevant with online reviews. The second a potential customer finds an overall 5-star review rating, they become curious how that company rigged a perfect review score.
“Maybe the company just has one review, and it’s 5-stars.”
“Are all of these real online reviews?”
“What if they pay the website to boost the score? Or the customers?”
Customers don’t expect you to be the Mary Poppins of your industry – practically perfect in every way. They know your business is run by people, and people will always make a mistake here and there. Leaving the negative review on your review site shows customers that you are an honest company capable of making – and owning up to – mistakes.
Opportunity to Humanize Your Brand
Speaking of owning up to mistakes, those negative reviews are a perfect opportunity to demonstrate who you are as a company. Like your grandmother may have told you, “We are who we really are in the face of adversity,” is absolutely true in this case. The audience online is watching how you respond to those negative reviews.
If you respond with kindness, understanding, and put forth a genuine effort to remedy the reviewer’s concerns, the audience will see you are doing your best to make it right. This makes your company more “real” to the customer, more approachable, and more of a company they would like to call.
“The last of human freedoms – the ability to chose one’s attitude in a given set of circumstances.”
– Viktor Frankl
Don’t Live in Fear of Negative Reviews
We get it. Negative reviews can be scary because no one likes to hear negative things about them! But negative reviews, when handled correctly, can actually be a great way to demonstrate your humanity, honesty, and willingness to improve to the audience watching online. Customers are constantly hunting for companies they can trust – and negative reviews are a great way to demonstrate that you are that company to trust.