Right now, Google is the dominant review platform. Lots of your customers and potential customers are looking at your business’s profile to determine the quality of your services. That makes it more important than ever to pay attention to how your business appears on Google.
If you’re looking to stand out from the competition, there’s an easy way to make your business look great to potential customers: responding to reviews. A study by Bazaarvoice showed that 7 in 10 customers have changed their mind about a brand based on a review response.
Reviews also help your business rank higher on local search. Google has confirmed that responding to reviews helps your business with online visibility. If you want to make sure that your business is easy for customers to discover, be sure that you’re sending quick responses to your customer reviews.
The First Step: Claiming Your Google My Business Profile
In order to respond to your Google reviews, the first thing that you need to do is claim your Google My Business profile. This profile is the first thing that customers see when they search your business on Google, as it will be on the right side of their screen in the Knowledge Panel.
When you claim your profile, you’ll have the ability to respond to customer reviews. You’ll also be able to add high-definition photos, contact information, and hours of operation.
If you’re an existing business, chances are that you already have a Google My Business profile. All you have to do is find it and claim it. If you need to set up a new Google My Business profile, click here.
How to Respond to a Google Review
To respond to a Google review, follow this 4-step process:
- 1. Sign in to your Google My Business account at business.google.com.
- 2. Click the three bars on the left-hand corner and select the location
- 3. Click “Manage reviews”, then find the review you want to respond to.
- 4. Click “View and reply”, then type out a response.
Maybe you want to know how to most effectively respond to certain types of reviews. Here are some tips.
Responding to Positive Reviews
Your business has done a great job of providing your customers with value. As a result, an ecstatic customer goes to Google and gives you a glowing 5-star review. While this might feel like a win, your work isn’t over just yet.
Responding to a positive review is an easy way of showing that you care sincerely about the opinion of each and every customer. Make sure to show the customer you appreciate them taking the time to leave feedback.
Here’s an example of a template that you can use to thank a customer for a glowing review.
Thank you so much for your kind words, (Customer name). We really appreciate you taking the time to share your experience with us.
Responding to Negative Reviews
Even the best businesses get some negative reviews. Eventually, you’re going to get one too. Don’t stress. With the right attitude, you can turn this negative feedback into something positive for your business.
The first thing to keep in mind is timing. If you wait too long, the customer’s opinion of your business might become set in stone. On the other hand, responding in a timely manner shows customers that you’re willing to listen to problems.
When you get a negative review, the first step is to take a deep breath. If you respond out of anger, it’s hard to deal with problems constructively. Make sure that you’re polite and apologetic.
If you deal with the problem, you can politely ask the customer to edit or delete a review. Here’s a template that you can use for asking a customer to delete their review:
Thank you for helping us to improve our customer experience. We regret that your initial experience with us turned out to be a negative one. Based on your feedback, we have taken steps to make sure that this issue will not happen again for you or any other customer. If there are any additional issues you would like to see resolved, feel free to contact us and we will work quickly to fix them.
We do understand that your review of (Company) on Google was based on your initial experience. We hope that your opinion on (Company) has since changed. If that is the case, we would appreciate if you edited your review to more closely reflect your current opinion. We take all of our customer reviews seriously and we want to make sure that every review accurately represents the experience of our customers.
Responding to Fake Reviews
Occasionally, you might get a review that’s not from one of your actual customers. It might be a patient that isn’t on your patient list or a former employee. The first thing that you should do is report the review to Google. If Google believes that the review isn’t representative of an actual customer experience, they will delete the review.
Of course, there’s no guarantee that Google will actually do this. Luckily, there’s an easy step you can take to make sure that potential customers browsing Google understand that they’re looking a fake review: leaving a response that lays out the facts.
In your response, lay out the reasons why you believe the review is fake. Remember to still be polite and show that your business is committed to great service. See the example below to see a business response to a fake customer review.
How BirdEye Can Help You Stay on Top of Google Reviews
It’s hard to be quick when it comes to responding to customer reviews. It’s not like Google is the only site that you have to worry about. There are hundreds of different review sites across the Internet. A negative review on one can escalate into a problem. Though a quick apology could fix the problem, it’s hard to stay on top of every review on every review site where you appear.
An online reputation management service like BirdEye can help you know the second a bad review is posted on any one of the sites that you’re tracking. BirdEye sends you automatic notifications so that reviews don’t slip under your radar. You’ll be able to send quick responses and turn angry customers into satisfied ones.
If you’re getting lots of customer reviews, it can be difficult to keep track of them all. You and your employees have lots of different priorities, and responding to customer reviews might not be on the top of your list.
With BirdEye’s ticketing product, you can turn reviews into support tickets to ensure they receive the personalized attention they deserve. The BirdEye dashboard will show you how many of the tickets you’ve assigned are open and how long it takes for your employees to address them on average.
You might not have the time to send personalized responses to every one of your customers. After all, you’re working on limited time. That doesn’t mean that you have to give up on trying to respond to all of your customer reviews.
You don’t need to spend time coming up with personal responses for every review you get. Response templates can help you cut down on the time you spend on responses. BirdEye provides some default templates for responding to positive and negative reviews, and allows you to create your own.
Use BirdEye, the #1 Reviews Software
With BirdEye, you can stay on top of every aspect of customer feedback. BirdEye’s all-in-one platform enables businesses to get new reviews, manage and respond to reviews from over 150 sites in a single dashboard, automatically share posts on social media, and receive actionable insights through Natural Language Processing.
BirdEye has been named the #1 company in the reputation management industry by G2Crowd. The Americans Business Awards recently gave BirdEye an award for “Most Innovative Tech Company.”