Dealing with Negative Customer Reviews

For some types of industries, it can be more difficult to develop an online presence than others. For example, in the self-storage industry, how do you make a name for yourself online? People do not usually think to review a storage company and it’s likely you’ll have sparse reviews. What happens when some of those reviews are negative? Maybe someone broke into a storage unit, maybe it wasn’t secured properly, maybe there was weather damage to the objects inside. It doesn’t matter what happened. What matters is working past the negative review.

You might wonder if it really matters whether or not there’s an unflattering review about your business online. Trust me, it does. The customer service platform, Zendesk, recently did a study that shows nearly 88 percent of people look at online reviews before choosing to purchase a product or service from a business. If you don’t properly manage negative customer reviews, you could lose 88 percent of your potential customers! So, how do you deal with these reviews?

Respond to the review

Whether or not you believe the review is justified, it’s best to respond to it as quickly as possible. Remember to be polite and address the customer’s concerns. You might inspire them to change their review merely by reaching out and offering some form of compensation, which will fix your issue. If the review contains offensive language and statements, remember to control your temper and work calmly with the individual. For some reviews, it may be best to reach out to the poster privately (Yelp provides businesses with the ability to email reviewers). Once the problem is resolved, you can make a short post about it on the reviewing page, letting other customers know it was resolved.

See if it can be removed

Some reviews may be downright false and also defamatory. For these reviews, if they contain false statements that could seriously impact your business or reputation, you may be able to get them removed from the site. If the review contains personal information or false reports of illegal activity, report it, and most sites will work with you.

Monitor your online presence

It’s vital to be proactive about your online presence. There are various review sites out there, which anyone can post on without having their identity or facts verified. If you watch out for any potentially harmful reviews, you can work against them as soon as they’re published. You can also build up a strong online image for your business, such as regularly updating your website and utilizing social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter. You can post about storage unit specials and deals, and on topics related to your industry.

Encourage reviews

If you can’t get a negative review to go away, the best thing to do is cultivate positive reviews. Encourage people who use your facilities to review on your Facebook page or on other sites. You can put up signs in your office or around the storage facility.

Learn from bad reviews

Finally, you can always learn something from a bad review. Carefully read over the customer’s problems with how business was done and vow to not make the same mistake again. Share the review with your employees so they can improve as well. Having the mindset of learning from negative feedback will help your business to grow.

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