Online reviews are increasing in popularity as more and more consumers begin to shop online.
Things that you once thought would be impossible to buy online (groceries, clothes, etc) are now extremely common. Whether the Coronavirus has prompted more online shopping or not, the fact is we like to shop online.
Just this year, my wife and I purchased a new mattress online. We didn’t go into a store to try it out or anything.
We were able to do this because ordinary people left reviews on various mattresses which helped shape our opinions.
One of the best ways to know if a product/service is any good is to read online reviews. In fact, 90% of people regularly or occasionally read online reviews.
But online reviews are not just great for consumers. They are great for business owners as well. And not for the obvious reasons.
Online reviews are essential for businesses to learn from and grow.
Most Businesses Just Want 5-Star Reviews
Most businesses just want 5-star reviews. They aren’t thinking “How can we improve as a result of this review.”
Instead, they are just thinking, “Oh no, what if someone sees this negative review.”
This short-term thinking and lack of leadership qualities can cost a business millions. While reviews can impact a companies reputation, the goal should not be to hide all bad reviews and highlight all the good reviews.
The goal should be to provide a service that everyone loves. A service that earns 5-star reviews based on merit and quality of the service.
At Find My Profession, our reviews were not always what they are today. We were able to earn regular 5-star reviews only after listening to client feedback and making necessary changes over the years.
If you want to create a thriving business with an excellent online reputation and 5-star reviews, start taking action and soliciting feedback from your customers.
If your goal is to only seek feedback from the happy customers, you are going about it all wrong. Positive feedback is great, but it’s the negative feedback that allows you to improve and grow.
How Find My Profession Uses Customer Reviews
At Find My Profession, we are constantly using online reviews as a way to improve our services.
We’ve had such tremendous success implementing recommendations from our clients that we regularly encourage constructive feedback in our reviews.
Your client’s feedback is essential. If you choose to ignore it, your business may not survive. If you choose to listen, your business can thrive like never before.
If you are a business owner, there are many ways to use reviews to your advantage.
We personally like to share each review we receive in our group Slack channel.
The good reviews allow us to celebrate as a team. The bad reviews allow us to brainstorm, and develop a strategy to avoid negative experiences in the future.
How to Respond to Online Reviews
If you are actively soliciting online reviews (recommended), make sure to respond to the ones you receive.
If it’s a happy customer, tell them thanks!
If it’s a customer providing constructive feedback, tell them you appreciate the advice and let them know what changes you’ve made to improve.
Negative reviews will only hurt you if you don’t respond or respond aggressively. Take the time to craft a well thought out response to the review and discuss the review with your team or loved one.
RevLocal talks a lot about how to respond to every type of review in this article.
You may also want to consider privately contacting the reviewer to see if there’s anything you can do to change their opinion.
Just remember, the value of a positive review is much less than the value of constructive feedback that leads you to a process improvement.
Use all reviews to your advantage (especially the negative ones) and start seeing how reviews can impact your company growth.