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How to Handle Negative Reviews of Your Business

Posted on in Business Law

Arlington Heights business law attorneyLet’s be clear on one thing: No matter how good your business is, you will never reach the point where every single customer is completely satisfied every single time they interact with your company. Obviously, you and your team will give it your best, and you might even meet your own standards nearly every time, but your expectations and your customers’ expectations are not always the same. Sometimes, what your customer wants is not realistic, reasonable, or possible.

For better or worse, there are countless outlets on the internet where a customer can go to express his or her dissatisfaction with your company, regardless of how reasonable his or her expectations were. When someone leaves a nasty review on Yelp, Google, or any other platforms, it might be upsetting and disappointing for you, but you can potentially make the most of the situation.

Take a Moment (or a Few Hours) to Respond

Your first inclination upon reading a negative review might be to fire back and to let the reviewer know what you think he or she should do with his or her thoughts. It is understandable that you would feel defensive, angry, and attacked, especially because a negative review usually feels very personal. Do not give in the to the temptation to turn the review into a fight. Take a few minutes—or a little longer—to calm down before you type anything. Your reputation and that of your business might depend on it.

Read What Was Said—and Between the Lines

If the review in question seems like an angry person who is not actually saying very much, your best option might be to simply ignore it. Future readers who find the review will probably have the same trouble you did in figuring out what the reviewer’s problem was, which means the review is not likely to have a big impact. On the other hand, however, if the review points out specific things that happened or behavior by your team members, you might want to look a little deeper into the situation. Keep in mind that the reviewer probably wrote the review in a moment of anger or frustration, so you may need to try harder to read through the emotion and determine what the problem was.

Work to Find Solutions

When you read a negative review, you might actually realize that the customer has a point and that their experience was not up to your company’s standards. If possible, you could offer to discuss the problem in more detail, but be sure to use a tone that is humble, personable, and apologetic. If the window to fix the issue has closed, you could still admit the mistake and pledge to address the error with your team.

In some cases, the review will be directed at your business for something that is not under your control. For example, you might have done everything possible within the confines of ethical business practices or industry regulations and still get a bad review. You might still consider responding in such a case. While you may not be able to satisfy the angry customer, you can still show other prospective customers that you care about client satisfaction—even when someone is mad at you.

Call an Arlington Heights Business Lawyer

If you would like to learn more about developing a strategy for dealing with online reviews, contact an experienced Cook County business law attorney. Call 847-749-4182 for a confidential consultation at A. Traub & Associates today.



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