Customer feedback is an inevitable aspect of online brand reputation management. If you run a business online, you would definitely get reviews from customers about your products and services.
It is important to note that customer reviews wouldn’t always be in favour of your business. At some point, almost every retailer would receive negative feedback.
The good news is both positive and negative reviews serve as opportunities to improve your brand reputation and strengthen the sense of business integrity and credibility.
To help you leverage those opportunities to the fullest, we have put together common types of reviews retailers can expect to receive and how you should deal with them.
TYPE 1: “YOU ARE AWESOME”
This is the category of reviews that come from customers who are actually your fans. They love your products and services and keep coming back for more while leaving positive reviews on your website.
So here, you don’t need to do anything except feeling good about yourself and basking in the glory of positive customer vibes around your brand, right?
If utilised mindfully, positive reviews can help you further enhance your reputation and attract more prospects and drive conversions.
How to respond;
- Thank the customer. Respond to each and every review in a personalised way to show customers gratitude and let them know you care about their business.
- Mention your brand name in your reply. This will help your business rank higher in SERPs.
- Promote your products/services in the comment. Many of your prospects would be reading your responses to assess your accountability and responsibility. Give them a reason to try your offerings by stating something interesting about the product or mentioning your upcoming range in response to your existing customer reviews.
TYPE 2: “I ORDERED SOMETHING AND GOT SOMETHING ELSE”
This is where you (the seller) messed up. You shipped the wrong item or the wrong size. Maybe, the item got damaged on the transit. The product got delivered late.
Slip-ups like these can happen when you are selling online and there’s nothing wrong in it. What’s wrong is not taking responsibility of your mistakes and not responding to such reviews and addressing the issue, which frustrates the customer even more.
How to respond:
- Admit it. You know it’s you who messed up, so own up to your mistake and apologise. Sometimes, even a simple apology does most of the reputation repair work.
- Do not shift the blame on to others (the shipping company or the bad weather) even if technically it wasn’t your fault. This will make you look even more irresponsible and will hurt your business accountability and integrity.
- Emphasise that this isn’t usual. Your prospects must be reading those not-so-good reviews. So, do let the concerned customer and potential customers know in your reply that this isn’t how things generally work in your business.
- Offer a quick fix. Address the issue promptly and offer a favourable solution to let the customer know that you care.
TYPE 3: HEY THERE, I AM HERE TO DESTROY YOUR REPUTATION
These are illegitimate reviews that crop up with the sole objective of attacking your business reputation. Fake, dishonest reviews may come from unethical competitors, disgruntled customers or from individuals having personal grudges against the business owner or anyone at the company.
How to respond:
- Do not delete the comment or review. This will make it look like you are concealing something while making people more suspicious of your business and offerings.
- Submit a removal request. Provide the review platform the evidence to prove that the review is not genuine and legitimate in order to have it deleted safely by the platform itself.
Don’t be a victim of online reviews, take control of your reputation
Even if you deliver the best product in the market and are the preferred choice for most local buyers, negative reviews can occur to your business. They may be based on an outright lie resulting from the frustration of one of your competitors or may be the result of a misunderstanding.
Whatever the source of review or underlying reason, a negative review is going to do the damage it is supposed to, anyway. Instead of sitting back and wondering why this just happened to you when you were only selling the best quality, take action to control your falling reputation.
Besides following the recommendations above, you can consider hiring a professional reputation management company to deal with customer reviews efficiently while maintaining a positive presence online.