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Local SEO: How to Respond to Negative Reviews

October 20, 2019

In today’s time, digital marketing holds high importance for all businesses of all sizes. If your business is not present online, you are not just losing the opportunity to interact with existing customers, but also throwing away the chance to get new ones. In addition to this, digital marketing companies in Dubai say that it is highly important for your business to actively participate and connect to your customers online.

Word-of-mouth marketing holds a remarkable power for your business. Nowadays, online reviews are considered to be the new and improved version of word-of-mouth marketing. In relation to this, Google and other review sites such as Yelp show business ratings along with the business listing as part of the local SEO. This makes the decision-making process easier for customers. They are able to see how your customers have rated your business, and also see the number of reviews you have received. This makes a lot of sense from a potential customer’s perspective as it gives them valuable information to compare and make a decision.

However, not all reviews are positive, so how do you deal with negative reviews? Here are some proven tips according to SEO agencies in Dubai:

1. Respond quickly (within 24 hours)

From the customer’s perspective, it was important enough to post a public review, so make sure to treat it as urgent. Respond as soon as possible to show that you are in tune with customer feedback and that you are an active participant in your business.

2. Be pleasant and thank the guest

Make sure to maintain a positive tone and if possible, address the customer by name. Thank him/her for taking the time to write a review. It is also important to lessen the tension by being appreciative of the feedback. In addition to this, respond publicly when possible so others can see that you are a brand that takes its customer service seriously.

3. Offer to make it right

One of the most important things in responding to negative reviews is to offer to make your wrongs right. For instance, if a customer was unhappy with their meal, invite them in for a free dinner on the house, and put your best chef on it. This gesture shows that you are willing to go the extra mile to make things right.

4. Provide Context

If you ask any SEO agency in Dubai, they would probably advice to always provide context when responding to negative reviews. Most people who feel compelled to write reviews are either elated or angry. When responding to a negative review, make sure to provide context for other people who can see the post.  Show empathy to the customer by acknowledging their opinion and show neutrality by providing situational context and don’t engage in a debate. State facts, not excuses. If you can solve the issue, you will turn an adversary into an advocate.

5. Contact the customer offline

Once you have responded online, make an effort to contact the customer personally to prove it is not all for show. You can provide an email or phone number for them to contact you privately to resolve the situation. This type of gesture could change their review or make them return to your business.

Getting your customers to review your business online is to let them know that you care. As a business, it is vital that you are always open to suggestions and constructive criticism. Therefore, it only makes sense for you to respond to all reviews that your business receives regardless if they are positive or negative. If you need any assistance on how to properly monitor and manage your business online reviews. Get in touch with Creativo. We offer local SEO services which include business listings and managing all types of reviews online. We have years of experience in the industry which makes us highly competitive.