The online reputation of your business is as important as ever in 2020 and has a direct impact on whether potential customers decide to purchase your product and/or service.
Reviews play a huge impact on the purchasing process of potential customers, as according to statistics, 72% of customers won’t take action until they read reviews.
Google Reviews are an open platform, meaning anyone can jump on to your Google My Business profile and leave your business a review, including your competitors.
Having a few negative reviews won’t mean the sky is falling down for most businesses, but we want to mitigate the chances of customers having a bad experience, and know how to deal with a negative Google review when and if it does happen.
Alright, let’s start with the bad news. There’s no direct way within Google My Business to delete a Google review as a business owner.
Although this is the case, the good news is that there is a way that you can potentially have the review deleted or edited by the end-customer.
You can also have the review potentially removed by Google Support if it’s an inappropriate and/or fake review that meets their guidelines.
Below are a few different steps that you should run through when you’ve collected a negative review:
The first step in combating a negative review is leaving a public comment on Google My Business responding directly to the negative review in question.
You’ll want to engage with the customer, and not only show the customer but others that you are actively responding to reviews and taking all feedback seriously and working to resolve any issues.
Respond in a positive manner, and encourage the customer to reach out directly to you to resolve any issues that they have had with your product or service. Never become defensive, remain professional, and keep your message short and to the point.
Remember – other potential customers will see this response, as it is public, and will be listed on your GMB profile.
In order to respond to any of your collect reviews, you’ll want to follow these steps:
You’re going to want to take the negative review head-on, and not only respond to the review on Google My Business but also reach out directly to this customer regarding their concerns.
Address the specific issue(s) raised by the customer, and let them know that you’re committed to resolving the issue. Remember, the customer’s feedback is extremely beneficial to your business, whether positive or negative.
If you’re able to respond and resolve their issue, the customer will most likely be willing to delete their Google review or edit it to become a positive review.
Once you’ve won back the customer, and resolved any issues, you can then kindly ask them if they would be willing to reconsider their negative feedback and either delete or edit their review.
Your customers will have the chance to edit or delete their review. Most users are not aware of this feature, so you’ll most likely need to guide them a bit in doing so if they agree with the following steps:
If you have received a review that you believe is fake, or inappropriate, you can flag it for removal. You’ll want to check Google’s policy on this one, as only reviews that fall under these requirements can be removed.
In order to flag a review, you’ll want to follow the below steps:
It can take some time before the Google support team is able to review your request and determine if the review in question can be deleted, or not.
What can you do if you’re unable to get your customers to edit or delete their negative reviews, even if you’ve resolved their issues and concerns?
The next best way is to collect additional positive reviews from your happy customers.
This strategy will entail collecting more positive reviews, in order to push down the negative experiences that are listed on your profile.
The most important thing to remember is that if there was an issue with your product or service that caused this to happen, you’ll first want to address that head-on and make sure that you’ve completely cleared the waters before collecting new customer reviews.
Maybe after reading this guide, you’ve had second thoughts on a review you’ve left for another business.
Let’s be honest – we all have our bad days.
You can follow the steps outlined above, and once again below, to edit or delete any of your own reviews that you’ve left for other businesses as well:
In short, it is possible to delete a review from Google. It’s also possible to edit Google reviews as well.
If you’ve collected a few negative reviews, it’s not the end of the world.
Remember, whatever you do, put the customer first.
Be professional, resolve all issues, and you’ll have a much easier time managing any negative reviews that you may collect.
Reputation management is an important aspect of your online marketing campaigns and certainly is something you should be actively keeping an eye on, as it can make or break your business.
Justin is the Founder of Rock The Rankings and has over 13 years of experience in the realm of SEO across multiple business ventures and agencies.
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