Best Practices for Responding to Google Reviews

In this day and age, a negative review on a social media site or a website can make or break your business. While it may seem like the best thing to do is delete any bad reviews you receive, that can actually lead to even more reviews and comments of a similar nature. If you are wondering how to respond to Google reviews that aren’t complimentary, here are a few tips.

Don’t Delete Negative Reviews

Your first instinct may be to delete any derogatory remarks your business receives, but you don’t necessarily want to do this. A business with only positive reviews on their website or review aggregation sites can look suspicious to customers. People reading reviews want honest opinions on a business and their services, products, and employees. If they only see glowing reviews, they may not believe that those reviews are all honest. Negative reviews also give you a chance to respond to customers and show that you care about their experiences. We’ll go into that more in the next sections.

Respond to All Reviews You Receive

There are ways to post responses to all reviews you receive, whether it be via a social media site or one like Google Reviews. Keep track of how you can submit responses to reviews and be sure to respond to positive and negative ones on a regular basis. This shows that you care what your customers are saying about your business and that you want to meet their needs. With a response to a negative review, you’ll want to be professional but also natural. Don’t just respond with a generic answer. Take the time to show you are engaging with the reviewer, that you have read and understood their concerns, and that it is important to you that you change their mind if possible about their experience with your business.

Do Not Engage in Unprofessional Behavior

It is important to keep your professionalism when responding to customer reviews. Even if the customer is behaving in an immature manner, you are responding as the voice of your business and you will want both the original reviewer and other people reading the review and response to see you as professional. Do not pick fights with people leaving negative reviews. Respond calmly and politely to their issues, even if you think they are in the wrong with their statements. Keep in mind that your response could mean the difference between a new customer utilizing your business or not. Even if you are responding to a negative review, they will see that you are doing so in a professional and mature manner and that your business is still worth checking out.

When It Might Be Necessary to Delete Reviews

For the most part, you should refrain from deleting any reviews you receive. Some people will spam Google Reviews with more negative ones about you if you delete their initial comments. They may also post about you deleting their review to other social media and websites, which could create a lot more negative publicity than you want to deal with. However, this doesn’t mean that you need to keep highly offensive, violent, or spam-like reviews. If a person threatens you, your employees, or your customers, you should certainly report them to the review site and the police, and then let the site delete the review. If a review is obviously written by a “troll” – someone who writes negative comments just to start arguments – you should also consider deleting it. Responding won’t lead to anything but more negative comments. You will want to consider on a case-by-case basis if a review should be deleted or not.

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