If you’re a business owner, you know how important word-of-mouth can be for your company. Word-of-mouth advertising isn’t just about what your friends say about you — it’s also about what other people think of your business in general. 

Today, this extends to online reviews and ratings on platforms like Google and Yelp. These are essential for businesses that operate online or have an offline presence with a website. 

If you want to succeed in today’s competitive business landscape, it’s time to get acquainted with online reviews and the impact they have on the success of your business. With the help of this ultimate guide, you’ll be equipped with all the information you need to thrive using online reviews as part of your marketing strategy.

What Are Online Reviews?

Online reviews are a type of user-generated content where individuals leave feedback about a product or service. These reviews are often displayed on the internet and are a form of social media. A review is a piece of feedback from an individual about a product or service, including the good and the bad.

Customer reviews are an essential part of e-commerce – over 50% of consumers read reviews before making a purchase. Online reviews are one of the most significant factors in a customer’s purchasing decision. 

The fact is that almost 90% of customers read reviews about businesses before making a purchase. So, it’s important that you encourage customers to leave reviews and create a system for replying to them.

The Importance Of Online Reviews 

Sales And Marketing Aspect

Reviews are an essential part of marketing your business online. Customers trust online reviews more than any other form of advertising, including recommendations from family and friends. 

On average, customers are 17% more likely to purchase a product after reading positive online reviews. Reviews also give you the opportunity to engage with your customers and improve your brand’s reputation, especially if you’re responding to negative reviews.

Responding to both positive and negative reviews allows you to put a human face on your brand and foster trust among customers. However, it’s important to respond to negative reviews in a tactful and professional manner.

Read: Why Online Reviews Are So Crucial to Your SEO And Marketing Strategy

In Human Resource Management Aspect

As a business owner, you want to attract and retain the best employees, but this can be difficult if your employees feel undervalued. The fact is that employees who feel appreciated are more likely to stay with your company, work harder, and recommend your brand to others. 

A review system allows you to recognize great work and provide positive feedback to employees. A review system is also a good way to identify areas of improvement and provide constructive feedback to employees who need it.

Importance Of Good Online Reviews

As mentioned earlier in the article, reviews are essential for success in the business world. Without positive reviews to back up your products and services, customers will be hesitant to buy from you. With that being said, it’s important not to place too much emphasis on the reviews themselves. They are helpful for your customers, but it’s important not to get too caught up in the numbers and to focus on the quality of the reviews. 

For example, you might be tempted to ask customers to review your products, but you might get a lot of mixed or low-quality reviews that aren’t helpful to potential customers. Instead, focus on delivering quality products and services so that you can receive high-quality reviews.

How to Respond to Good Online Reviews

online store reviews

The first step in managing online reviews is to respond to good reviews as soon as possible, if not immediately. Responding to all positive reviews is important to build a strong reputation and improve customer satisfaction rates. There are two main goals when responding to good reviews: thanking customers for their feedback and finding a way to naturally include a link back to your website.

When responding to positive reviews, it is important to maintain a high level of professionalism. Your main goal when responding to positive reviews is to be genuine and sincere. It is also important to avoid sounding sales-y.

In addition, it is also important to remember to stay on topic. While it is okay to brag a little and thank the customer for their feedback, it is important not to stray too far from the topic.

Show Appreciation

One of the simplest yet most effective ways to respond to positive reviews is to thank the reviewer. A simple “thank you” shows that you value the feedback and appreciate customers’ time. The key is to do so in a genuine manner, not a “form letter” kind of way. 

You can also thank the reviewer by including a personal message with the review on the website. This shows that you appreciate the feedback even more, and customers can see how appreciative you are.

Explore Suggestions

When customers provide you with positive reviews, it’s important to take the time to read through the review and truly understand what the customer is saying. You can also use the review to understand what you can improve in the future.

An effective way to respond to positive reviews is to ask the reviewer what else you can do to further improve the business. This shows customers that you truly care about their feedback and are open to suggestions for improvement. Make sure to respond to positive reviews on time so that you can use the review to improve your business.

Let Other Customers Know

The best way to respond to positive reviews is to let other customers know that you appreciate their feedback. You can do this by thanking customers for their feedback and letting them know that their reviews truly matter. 

You can even ask customers to leave feedback on your business page or the product page. You can also respond to positive reviews by letting other customers know that they can leave feedback. One way to do this is to let customers know that they can leave reviews by clicking a “write a review” or “leave feedback” link.

Develop A Review-Based Strategy

The key to managing positive reviews is to develop a review-based strategy. A review-based strategy includes all the ways you respond to reviews, from thanking customers for reviews to asking for more feedback. Make sure to respond to all positive reviews as soon as possible. 

You should also ask customers for feedback and encourage them to leave a review on your website. A review-based strategy will help you manage reviews and respond to customers on time.

Importance of Bad Online Reviews

One of the most important things to remember about responding to reviews is to address negative reviews. It is important to respond to negative reviews as quickly as possible with a genuine apology. Make sure to respond to negative reviews by thanking the reviewer for their feedback and letting them know that you truly appreciate their honesty. 

It is also important to apologize for any mistakes and let the reviewer know how you plan to improve the product or service. You should respond to all negative reviews to show that you care about the feedback and truly want to improve. A quick response to negative reviews can help you turn a negative review into a positive marketing opportunity. 

A negative review can hurt your business if it is not responded to immediately. You should always respond to negative reviews with a genuine apology. You should also ask the reviewer for suggestions on how to improve the product or service.

How to Respond to Bad Online Reviews

Are Online Reviews Trustworthy

If you receive a negative review, the first thing to do is breathe. Although it may be tempting, you can’t write an angry response to a customer who has something negative to say about your business. Instead, you’ll want to respond in a calm and collected manner. Responding to a negative review in a calm and collected manner shows the consumer that you acknowledge their experience, but that you are not responsible for it. 

Acknowledge the Bad Review

If you happen to receive a bad review, the first thing to do is acknowledge it as a mistake or a miscommunication. If the customer is upset because of a misunderstanding, it’s best to clear that up as soon as possible before it turns into a negative review. Once you’ve acknowledged the review, you’ll want to focus on the future. Explain to the customer how you plan to fix the problem and how you plan to prevent it from happening again. If the review is about a product or service you no longer provide, you can explain that as well

Be Transparent

If a customer has a negative experience with your business, they will likely include that in their review. If they do, there are a few things you can do to show that you truly care about their experience and want to improve as a company. The first thing you can do is respond to the review. You can also offer to call the customer and discuss their experience. 

If the customer is willing to discuss their experience with you, ask them what you can do to improve as a company. You can also add a response to the review. This can be as simple as saying “We apologize for the inconvenience” or “We take full responsibility for this mistake.” This can go a long way toward soothing the customer’s anger.

Focus on the Future

Customers can smell insincerity when you try to change their minds about a negative experience. It is better to focus on the future and what you plan to do to prevent the customer’s experience from happening again than it is to try to convince the customer that their experience was wrong. 

This means that you should avoid making excuses and instead offer solutions. If you receive a negative review, don’t make the problem about yourself. Make it about the solution you plan to implement in the future.

Make the Review Optional

If you notice that you’re receiving a large number of negative reviews, it may be time to ask your customers to stop leaving reviews. This is not something you should do without careful consideration, but you do have the option of disabling customer reviews on your website. 

When you decide to make customer reviews optional, make a public statement about it. You can make a statement on your website or social media page. Explain that you’d like to focus on customer feedback, not reviews. 

Now, you want to make sure that you’re actually listening to customers and taking action. Don’t just ignore these complaints and hope they go away. Instead, take every comment and suggestion to heart and use it to improve your business.

Grow Your Brand

If you’re responsive to customer complaints, transparent about what went wrong, and truly thankful for customers’ feedback, they will reward you with their loyalty and positive reviews. 

You don’t have to worry about growing your brand if you already have positive reviews to back you up. Potential customers are much more likely to click on your link than they are to click on your competitor’s link. Positive reviews are essential to growing your brand, and they are much easier to obtain than you may think. 

All you have to do is focus on providing excellent customer service and delivering superior products and you’ll notice a positive change in your reviews in no time.

Final Thoughts

Word-of-mouth advertising isn’t just about what your friends say about you — it’s also about what other people think of your business in general. If you want to succeed in today’s competitive business landscape, it’s time to get acquainted with online reviews and the impact they have on the success of your business.

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