Here are two simple ways to proactively manage online reviews–since 91 percent of people read them.
If you think online reviews get lost in all the Internet noise, think again. Research shows that 91% of people regularly or occasionally read online reviews, and 84% trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation. And they make that decision quickly: 68% form an opinion after reading between one and six online reviews.
Online reviews matter — and that’s why you need to create and maintain a process that encourages your customers to leave reviews, monitors the reviews they leave, and improves any negative reviews you might receive. Not only will creating a review process help you receive more — and better — reviews, it will most importantly improve conversions with clients.
Here’s a process that’s been developed to manage online reviews. It’s helped us get to a 9.2 out of 10 on Trustpilot. Feel free to adapt it to the unique needs of your business…
1. After customers use your service, email them a customer satisfaction survey.
Not every customer will respond to our survey, of course, and that’s okay. The best way to improve your response rate is to provide outstanding services. Generally speaking, people tend to give reviews either when they are delighted or when they are upset; the middle ground, so to speak, tends to remain fairly silent.
2. Bad reviews are a huge opportunity, not a problem.
If a customer who responds to our survey feels they had a problem with our service, we immediately work to solve it. Why ask for feedback if you’re unwilling to act upon that feedback?
But what if an unhappy customer leaves a negative review online? Our customer service team constantly monitors the site and reaches out directly to try to solve the customer’s problem.
The first thing we do is make the customer feel heard. Jump too quickly to trying to solve the problem and some will think you didn’t take the time to fully understand the problem — and how it made the customer feel. Listen, ask questions, and then validate the customer’s feelings. Say, for example, “It must have been frustrating for you to not be able to….”
Then focus on solving the problem, confident that you know not only understand the problem, but what the customer really needs.
Once the customer is happy, we politely ask them to edit their rating.
Most will do so — after all, customers don’t want to leave negative reviews. They want to be happy.