Have a bad online business review? Don’t panic – Here’s how to respond.

How to Handle a Bad Online Review

It's disappointing to receive a negative online review. If you stick to these simple rules, you'll get the best results and possibly a new fan!

"Look at a bad online review as an opportunity. It's not uncommon to turn a unhappy customer into a raving fan."
Rick McNeely President and Founder of Operation Reputation

Stay Cool and be a Professional

Be concerned, interested and committed to your customer. Consider other potential clients who may see this review. This is an opportunity to show your great customer service.  

Top Tips for handling bad online reviews

Don't Argue

Do not try to win the argument, you can’t and won’t. Your goal is to turn the problem into a client, not win the argument.

Don't Fight Back - Get Them Offline

Keep your cool and be professional. Be factual, be understanding, address the complaint like the whole world is going to see it. The best thing you can do is get the customer off-line out of the public view.

Make Lemonade

This sounds cliché but it’s true. Many times you can turn a negative situation or negative feeling into an excellent experience for the consumer.

Act Quickly

The quicker you can take positive action and address the complaint, the better. Don't hesitate in hopes that the problem will go away.

Thank the Customer

Thank the customer for taking the time to review your business and state your goal of pleasing every customer every time (or whatever appropriate goal your business may have).

Appeal to a Higher Source

If the reviewer goes rogue keep your cool and after the dust settles submit an appeal to the review platform and ask for removal of the non factual review.

Learn from Bad Reviews!

Most importantly, learn from a bad review.  What facts can you use to improve your business?  While no business likes a bad review, within each complaint there lies a lesson and opportunity!