Impact of Negative Reviews
Someone left you a negative review online. Yikes! But the way you respond and handle it could have a greater impact to your business than the review itself. Before you panic, ignore it or respond in complete defense, there are ways to resolve the bride’s discontent and even use it as an opportunity, too.
Many brides often refer to reviews when seeking out vendors for their big days. After all, it’s nice to see if someone else had a positive experience before you sign a contract. But one negative review on a public-facing site could cause you to lose serious leads and potential clients.
How do you avoid a negative review? For starters, remember the Golden Rule: treat everyone the way you want to be treated. Be kind, be hospitable and do your best to provide the service they expect and especially the one for which they have paid.
If you feel a bride might be displeased with your service anyway, start by communicating with her to see if you can uncover the reason for her dissatisfaction. If she’s unhappy with what you have done, apologize. Offer this olive branch to ease the bride’s fears, calm her down and make her realize that you are on her side.
But even as sorry as you might be, a bride still might leave a negative review. So, how do you rectify the situation to ensure you still have a positive reputation? Here are a few tips:
· Don’t ignore it. It makes your business look unsatisfactory if you do not acknowledge a customer’s concerns (no matter what they might be). By responding, you show your business believes in customer service.
· Sleep on it. If you react as soon as you see the negative review, you could make matters worse. Don’t respond with emotion. Take some time to think about how best to approach the situation with professionalism. If you respond with grace and consideration, other potential customers will see this and appreciate it.
· Try to get in touch with the bride to apologize and see if you can resolve the issues that have upset her. Even if this means offering her a discount or another token of atonement, it can sway her to rethink her post. Do your best to take the entire conversation offline, if possible.
· Be sincere and professional. If you decide the best thing for your business is to respond to the review, be sure it is sincere. Do not get catty and point fingers. You can always explain your side of the situation in a professional manner and even highlight reasons your business is successful. The extra proof points will put your business in a positive light.
Negative reviews can happen to good businesses no matter what they do to please a client. If you know you’ve done everything you can to resolve the issue, simply move on and use it as a learning tool as you help your next client. Their positive review could help you win more business, after all!
photo via: Katie Shuler Photography