In recent years, surveys have shown that up to 90% of Americans read online reviews for businesses regularly. They do it to see which businesses they should patronize over all the rest.
With this in mind, you’re going to need to do what you can to rack up almost nothing but positive reviews. This kind of feedback from customers can be invaluable as it’ll help to bring in even more business in the future.
Before you begin trying to put together long lists of online reviews, though, you should learn about the online review management errors you should aim to avoid. The last thing you want to do is utilize the wrong review management strategy and have it come back to bite you.
Here are seven online review management errors to avoid for your business.
1. Failing to Ask Customers for Online Reviews
You don’t necessarily want to make your customers feel like you’re going to force them to write online reviews for your business. They’re probably not going to respond well to this.
But at the same time, you also don’t want to completely ignore the fact that it would be nice for your customers to leave you online reviews. So you should casually mention that you would appreciate them considering leaving online reviews for you.
This will make them think about leaving you online reviews without making them feel like they have no choice but to do it.
2. Offering to Give Customers Things in Exchange for Online Reviews
In an attempt to convince your customers to leave you online reviews, you might be tempted to offer them certain incentives in exchange for their reviews. For instance, you might offer to give them a discount on a product for an online review.
You might be able to get away with doing this. But you might also end up with a bunch of online reviews that sound like they were written by those who were getting things in exchange for them. That makes this one of the most potentially harmful online review management errors that you can make.
3. Putting Together Fake Online Reviews on Your Own
If your business has next to no online reviews, you might give some thought to getting the ball rolling by writing your own reviews for it. It’s actually much easier to do this than you might think.
But if you get caught doing it, it could lead to some serious repercussions. You might even get blacklisted by certain online review services if they suspect you may have created fake reviews for your business.
4. Giving Up the Opportunity to Respond to Online Reviews
It’s not enough for you to simply get your customers to write online reviews for your business. You also need to be prepared to respond to these reviews, including both positive and negative reviews.
You should thank those who leave positive reviews for letting you and others know about the great experiences that they had. It’ll help you create real connections with customers who like your business.
You should also ask those who leave negative reviews to reach out to you so that you can discuss their complaints further. You should strive to make things right with them instead of just writing off their negative reviews and hoping no one notices them.
5. Getting Overly Defensive While Responding to Online Reviews
While it’s a good idea for you to respond to negative reviews, you do not want to get defensive when you’re writing your responses. If you do, it’s going to do way more harm than good for your business.
Even if a customer gets snippy with you and isn’t especially nice while complaining about your business, you should still take it upon yourself to be on your best behavior while responding to them. It’s going to show that your business cares about trying to ensure that all your customers are satisfied.
6. Letting Online Reviews Linger for a Long Time Before Responding to Them
Responding to feedback from customers isn’t something that you should put off for a long time. Almost as soon as you see a review from a customer come in, you should start to craft a response to it.
You might even want to set things up so that people receive automated review responses from your business. It’ll help you buy some time before you can send your customers more detailed responses.
7. Turning a Blind Eye to Online Reviews Altogether
There are some business owners that, for one reason or another, choose to ignore all of the online reviews that they receive. They won’t bother to read everything from business reviews on Google to social media review posts.
If you fall into this category right now, you should aim to change this immediately. Just because you turn a blind eye to these online reviews doesn’t mean other people are going to do it.
You should try to sift through any online reviews you’ve received from customers at least once or twice each week. It’ll help you stay on top of them and provide you with valuable feedback from customers.
Don’t Make Any of These Online Review Management Errors
As you can see, there are quite a few online review management errors that business owners can make. Each and every one of them can have detrimental effects on their businesses.
You should try your hardest to steer clear of all the online review management errors on this list. It’ll enable you to take total control of your company’s online reviews so that you can build up your reputation within your community.
Browse through the rest of our blog for additional tips on running your business more effectively.