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Heather Lutze
  January 30, 2017

Bad Online Reviews: Yikes! What Should I Do?

bad reviewYikes! What Should I Do about a Bad Online Review?

Have you ever gotten a bad review online? You sat there frozen wondering what you should do about it. Panic spreads as you are freaked by this scathing new comment. What will prospects and potential new clients think about your company if they read this?

Here’s my advice on how to handle this stressful predicament and manage your online reputation.

1. Take a deep breath and relax. It’s just one review. You likely have other positive comments from happy customers. If not, I’ll tell you a little more about how to get them at the end of the post.

2. Reread the Review. Look over the comment and see if you can identify who may have written it. Was it a disgruntled employee or someone who was fired recently? Or was it a customer with a legitimate gripe?

3. Have a Company Meeting. Sit down as a company or with management and talk about negative reviews. Set a policy for what type of action to take regarding social media comments. If the complaint was related to a customer service or product issue, take time to assess your process and best practices to avoid similar problems in the future.

4. Set up Google Alerts. Set up google.com/alerts for your company name, company name + review, names of board members, etc. Don’t forget to use quotes when setting up the alert. For example, if I were setting up my own alert, I might use these: “Findability University”, “Heather Lutze Speaker”, and “Findability.com”. You can also set up alerts at Mention.com to notify you about any mentions in social media or on the web.

Here’s a great article from Inc.com about how to use Google Alerts to stay apprised of the buzz about your company online, good or bad. http://www.inc.com/jeff-haden/5-ways-to-go-far-beyond-google-alerts.html

5. Appeal to Google. You can get a Google review assessed and possibly removed if you think it goes against Google’s review policy. First you flag it for review and then wait to hear about their assessment. This only works for reviews that are inaccurate, not fact-based and that disobey Google’s policies.

Read this support piece to learn more. https://support.google.com/business/answer/4596773?hl=en Other review sites like Trip Advisor or Yelp have their own process for handling bad reviews that are not true or inaccurate.

6. Get More Good Reviews! Another option is to increase the number of good reviews you have. Think about your satisfied customers or clients who would write you a testimonial praising your products or services. Connect and ask them to do this for you. You might also set a new policy to request a review whenever a customer expresses how pleased they are. Perfect timing to garner another glowing testimonial!

Don’t take a bad review here and there to heart and remember that people love to complain anonymously on the web. Do make sure to investigate a poor review and see this as an opportunity to improve if needed. Then be sure to focus your energy on getting good reviews and you’ll maintain your strong reputation.

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Source: Heather Lutze