Handling negative reviews- 4 important tips

Frederik Hermann

3 min read Last Updated Dec 9, 2019

Negative reviews can involve significant risks. Therefore, handling negative reviews require some sort of strategical approach. Even a simple bad review can damage your online reputation and become viral on social media. Consumers resort to third-party review sites and are not necessarily looking for a perfect 5-star service provider. Customers look for a variety of factors that might include hours of operation, location, and services offered, as well as feedback on the business.

A wide range of  business professionals use social media channels like Twitter, Facebook, and Google+. Even the healthcare industry can use these channels to communicate with their customers.  Responses on these platforms can be positive and valuable to customers and businesses alike. Negative reviews won’t necessarily discourage a customer from using your services. They can provide insight into what the worst-case situation might look like. But when the negative reviews are affecting your business, here are some steps required in handling negative reviews:

Improve your services and products based on customer feedback

Listen to your customers’ needs and respond by making necessary changes. This can help you avoid future negative reviews and improve the growth of your business. Also, ensure you have a strong online presence with accurate listings and a high star rating. These features on your website can help attract potential new customers. Simultaneously, it’s important to encourage satisfied customers to leave reviews, as well. 

how to deal with bad reviews

Don’t leave a review unanswered

If your business resolves issues quickly and efficiently, 95% of unhappy customers say they are open to returning to your business. Acknowledging the reviewer’s concerns and apologizing, and at the same time promising them improved services in the future, is good way of handling negative reviews. This lets the customer know that you are listening. Therefore, this prompts them to stay with you.


Ask for an updated review

After addressing the customer’s concerns, ask them to remove the review or change the information. A customer may choose to update their review, remove it, or post a follow-up review that negates the effect of the original bad review. If you feel that the reviewer is only focused on maligning your image, it is best to let the issue go. This is one way of handling negative reviews.

Handling negative reviews

Requesting negative review removal

In the case of a fake or slanderous review on review platforms like Google and Yelp, you can request removal of the review. These websites have fraud detection guidelines and if your case happens to fall in line with them, there is a chance that the review will be taken down. Hence, you might get some relief in handling negative reviews in tricky situations such as these.

How to deal with bad reviews – If you come across a situation where the review appears fraudulent, use the review website’s tools to flag the review.


Comprehensive online reputation management solutions like BirdEye, come with powerful tools to improve your online reputation and customer experience. To try it out now, sign up for a free trial.