Some people find them scary. Others find them exhilarating.
Ah, the power of online reviews.
It is a little wild that in our modern times, anyone, anywhere, at any time can tell the world how much they loved, or even hated your business online.
Which has an impact that can either help, or hurt way worse than any boo-boo you ever had as a kid.
Thankfully, there are bandaids for the blows that can come from negative online ratings and reviews - with Neosporin for any scarring.
All joking aside, reviews play an important role online.
Just about all of us can admit to looking at them before making a buying decision.
We like to know exactly what we’re getting, and insuring it will be worth the money we’re potentially paying.
And we like to know what others have to say about their own experience with the service.
And why not leverage this information when it’s easily available on Google, Facebook and Yelp.
Especially when it can save us time, money and frustration in the long run.
How to Manage Online Reviews
Online reviews are the new social proof.
We live in a fast paced world full of information. Our attention spans have shortened, and we want quick and easy to access answers.
Reviews make it easy for people to qualify companies quicker, which makes their buying experience much simpler.
This is one reason alone why you want to invest in a process for getting more reviews for your business.
On the other hand, you want to also be able to handle reviews that aren’t so hot.
How to Handle Negative Reviews
How companies handle negative reviews can determine how quickly they recover.
It’s understandable to be upset when someone mentions your company or services in an unfavorable way, but reacting emotionally versus responding professionally will only worsen the situation.
If you receive one of these types of reviews, the first thing you should do is respond.
The last thing you want to do is ignore the unhappy customer.
Write an short, empathetic response with an apology, and ask them to contact you, or if you can contact them to get more information so you can remedy the situation.
Often times, people will remove their reviews if their problems are acknowledged.
3 Simple Tips for Getting More Online Reviews
#1. Make the Process Easier for Customers to Review
To streamline the process, it's a good idea to create a page you can refer people to so they can leave a review.
This page should include direct links to the profiles you want reviews left on, as well as suggestions for what you want people to talk about, such as:
To make it even easier, and to get even more reviews, create an option for people to leave them right there in the email.
Or, print out your online review request page and use it when you are asking for reviews in person.
What better time would there be for people to leave their feedback than immediately after their service is completed?
#2. Just Ask
It may be uncomfortable for you and your crew at first, but simply asking customers for reviews can be highly effective.
This can be as simple as:
To make this easy on your customers, have a page (physical or online - as mentioned above) that you can give customers that include direct links to your review profiles.
To turn this into a system, we simply create a review funnel to send customers through.
#3. Keep on Serving
A solid long-term marketing strategy should include building an email list.
When you have one, you can market to your past customers year round, and send them discounts, coupons, holiday specials, etc. Or, send them value such as a blog post or monthly newsletter.
Having an email list means you have more chances of following up with your customers for their feedback.
Some many not see your first email, and others may simply forget.
Of course, the idea is not to pester them.
You're simply following up to make sure they got what they needed, and that they are satisfied with the service they received.