Negative reviews are bound to happen. But they can help you realize some things that aren't working at your business that you wouldn't be able to see yourself.
First and foremost, don't be defensive when replying to a negative review. This will look bad and can deter future customers.
Here's a reliable formula for responding to negative reviews:
- Address the reviewer by the first name as this will make the review feel much more personal.
- Apologize for whatever the reviewer mentioned in the review.
- State that you will be looking into the problem and will make sure to fix it.
- Thank the reviewer for taking the time to leave a review.
- Leave contact information for further discussion.
An example of a response to a negative review could be:
"Hi (first name)! We're so sorry that you had an unfortunate experience at our establishment. I'm looking into the problem and will make sure it gets fixed. Thank you for taking the time to leave us a review and give us insight on how we can better serve our customers. If you'd like to contact me and further discuss this issue please don't hesitate to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can reach me by phone at 555-555-5555."
Responding to a negative review gives you a chance to fix whatever went wrong between your business and the customer. The people who leave negative reviews usually care enough about your business to let you know that something is wrong, which means that if the issue is resolved, they're likely to return to your business.
Remember that other potential customers are reading these reviews and that keeping your responses professional and attentive is a must. Responding to negative reviews has the power to turn that not so happy customer into a returning customer.