We talked in the last article Reputation Management about how important customer service can be for your company’s reputation. That is doesn’t take a major mistake by your staff to upset a customer, whom then runs to the nearest computer to write a nasty online review of their experience and how you are the worst company on earth. When we left the article we were to the point where what do we do with a bad review and what options might a business owner have to address the complaint and try to make it right.

Working on Your Online Review

Okay, the nasty online review has just made it to your attention.  Now you need to know what to do. This brings me to a real story that happened about 6 weeks ago or so. I was going to go to my favorite pizzeria and looked them up online for kicks. I was surprised at the top was a very nasty online review. After I read it I was even more shocked. Let me tell you why. The reviewer started out by saying how they had eaten at this pizzeria more than 30 times.  They started out by saying they always had an excellent meal and it was the best. From there the customer goes into their last visit they went to pickup the pizza and it was wrong. They weren’t happy, expressed to the owner.  He said he confirmed the order on the phone with the husband of the lady picking up the pizza and that it was prepared as ordered.

Bad review good review

The last article, Reputation Management – In House discussed train the staff on how to handle upset customers. As the owner or business manager train yourself as well and preferably first. Well the pizzeria owner began to argue with the woman and refused to fix the pizza. Well, what did she do. Yeah, she wrote a bad online review that is nearly a year old and still among his top 2 or 3 reviews on Google for his restaurant. Was it worth a $10 pizza pie to have this bad online review? Was the owner right, possibly, but did it matter in the long run that he got the order right? You see, this was a customer that had been their many times and very happy, but it only took one bad experience to blab it all over the internet. The best way to handle a bad online review is not to have them in the first place. This could have been 100% avoided.  Note, the woman never wrote a positive online review for the 30 previous meals she has at this pizzeria. You know what they say about negative comments spreading more than positive ones and it’s true.

The interesting part of this is I assumed the owner didn’t know about the online review.  So when I went to get my dinner I mentioned it to him and thought I would help him out. He wanted no part of that. He remember her, the conversation, the pizza that was ordered down to the last detail and he was not planning to make amends to make the bad online review go away. On most online review sites if you are monitoring your reviews or have someone like our company, SEO competitors monitoring for you we would have instantly know of the bad review and then we could respond to it courteously and make it up to the customer and often get an update to the review that the owner replied to the customer and made an acceptable amends and then the customer acknowledges such. We take a bad online review and with a little work get that to be a positive. 

How is it positive?

Now when someone goes to read the bad online review they will see that the business owner contacted the customer.  How he turned a bad situation into a positive experience and helped after the fact. New visitors reading the review will see not a perfect business and they understand that.  At least the business was willing to go above and beyond to make things right and they will do business with someone that does that.  Besides a couple of bad online reviews with how you handled them mixed in with many good reviews is far better than a company that has all good online reviews. No business is perfect and people like to see how you handled a negative situation. It makes your business seem more personable.

Some Online Review Tips for Reputation Marketing

Reputation Marketing
  1. Make sure the staff is trained how to handle upset customers.
  2. Have a system in place to be sure you are receiving any and all online reviews posted online about your company.
  3. Respond quickly or engage when you become aware of a bad online review.
  4. Capture customer’s emails so you can follow up to ensure they were satisfactorily treated while doing business with your company.
  5. Solicit happy customers to provide an online review of their experience with your company.
  6. Make it easy for customers to provide you with a good online review. Give them a business card or postcard with some website addresses that they can easily get to your review page to post a review without having to hunt online for the right page to do so.
  7. Reviews posted online are as good as a testimonial and you should use them as such, at least the good reviews.
  8. Use reviews in your marketing. Just like Facebook, where Like our page and receive a coupon. You can do the same for a review, but you can’t offer something for only a good online review, please never do that.
  9. Often online review sites get indexed and when your company name is mentioned by the search engines indexing the online review sites it can help you get to page 1 of the rankings, especially for your local market and without paying for SEO.
  10. Go over reviews with your staff and use them as a tool of what to do and what not to do to increase the good reviews and eliminate the bad ones.

Tips and tricks from professionals

Your online reputation is just as important as your community reputation. It can be seen by people everywhere. The biggest suggestion I can make is make sure you are monitoring daily for online reviews, both good and bad. I know this isn’t something 99% of business owners can do themselves. I would suggest contact a marketing consultant and get on an online review plan now.  They will monitor hundreds of sites for you and the minute something hits you can be notified, especially if negative in nature. If you have questions contact Seo competitors at +1 647-558-8780


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