How to Successfully Manage Online Reviews

Online reviews can be headache, particularly for those that do not have the knowledge that is needed to effectively manage them. We all know that the feedback that is left by a business’ customers across the internet is of extreme importance, but what happens when that feedback becomes negative? How are businesses supposed to manage negative reviews? Apart from that, there are so many review sites out there, making it difficult for businesses to decide on the best when it comes to managing online feedback. Here, in any case, is how to successfully manage online reviews;

  1. Claim or create as many free listings as is possible for your business

The first thing that you need to do when it comes to managing online reviews is claim as many of the available free listings as is possible. Your customers are going to leave reviews across a wide range of platforms, and the following free sites are, without doubt, some of the biggest when it comes to online reviews collection;

  • Google
  • Yelp
  • TripAdvisor
  • Product Review
  • Facebook

There are countless other platforms on which you can have your business listed as far as the collection of online reviews is concerned. Considering that listings on the above mentioned platforms are, as we have already mentioned, free, it’s really not going to hurt in any way to claim yours or to create a Facebook page.

With regard to the world’s biggest social networking site, many people are not actually aware of the fact that the platform is even bigger than Yelp and TripAdvisor when it comes to online reviews. In order to enable reviews on your Facebook Page, all that you need to do is follow the steps that are outlined in the provided link.

  1. Dedicate a staff member to handling reviews

The biggest mistake that many businesses make is not giving online reviews the importance that they deserve. Considering that over 90% of consumers will first consult online reviews before making a purchase, reviews are something that you really need to take seriously.

Where possible, it would actually be advisable for you to appoint or hire someone whose job is to handle reviews! The payoffs from doing this can be rather immense. As an example, businesses that gain a star on Yelp, generally speaking, can expect an increase of between 5 and 9 percent in their profits, according to well cited research.

The person

Dealing with various kinds of people can be something of a challenge, which is why you need to actually make sure that whoever it is that you end up appointing to handle reviews on your behalf is gifted with enough patience.

Just go to the internet today, and you will find countless examples of people who clearly do not have what it takes to handle the feedback that is left by customers. The thing is, some of the feedback that you are going to get will, inevitably, be negative, and if you do not know how to handle it, you will end up pushing people away.

  1. Strive to respond to as many reviews as is possible

You will, at the beginning, strive to respond to each and every review that you get. That is the ideal situation, as far as online reviews are concerned. People like to feel that they are being given attention, and when you do that, you will discover that they will keep bringing their business to you.

However, the ideal situation is not always obtainable. Unless you are the kind of business that deals with only a few customers at any given point in time, it’s actually not going to be possible for you to respond to all reviews, unless you have a team that is dedicated to doing so.

Just take a platform such as Amazon, as an example. There, it’s really not going to be possible for the most popular sellers to respond to all reviews. What you can do, if you find yourself in a similar situation, is to make sure that you respond to customer queries, as opposed to reviews.

A review is simply a comment, for which a reply would be desirable but is not expected, whereas a customer query is a request for further information.

  1. Learn to Manage Negative Reviews

Negative reviews are, as we are always mentioning on this platform, an unavoidable part of online reviews. What you need to do is not to run away when you get a negative review. There is also no need for you to go ballistic and to launch an insult match with the customer.

The best way to respond to negative reviews is to take them as the opportunity that they are. What most people do not realize is that customers actually expect a certain amount of negative feedback for every company or product. If you only have positive reviews, the whole thing may begin to appear rather suspect.

You can manage negative reviews by also reaching out to the concerned customer and making sure that whatever concern they may have had, it is quickly resolved. You can then convince them to go back to the place where they left scathing review to have it edited.

  1. Make it easy to post reviews

People are , under normal circumstances, not actually motivated to leave reviews about a particular product or service. They will only do so, under most instances, when the feedback that they want to leave is negative.

You may, therefore, find yourself in a situation where you have a lot more negative than positive reviews, despite the fact that your overall interaction with your customers may be positive.

The thing to do is to encourage satisfied customers to leave reviews about your business. You can do this by sending them reminders, or by offering them incentives, such as a discount on their next purchase.

  1. Automate the process of gathering reviews

Related to the above point is the fact that you should automate the process of gathering reviews. Amazon sends reminders to customers after they have made purchases through the platform, and this is something that every business should strive to do.

There are many platforms out there that help you automate the process of gathering and syndicating online reviews. These platforms include Shopper Approved, which also helps you get greater online reviews through star ratings in Google Ads and in organic traffic.

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