Tag Archives: Online Reviews

Managing Your Web Reputation, One Review At A Time

As a Google Local Guide, I review every place I visit and every place I eat. With over 300 reviews and photos uploaded to Google, I am just one of many who are helping Google index local businesses, build reviews and improve the accuracy of Google Maps.

Google does not pay me for these services, but I do receive special Google branded products and other perks for being a Google Local Guide.

Here’s what I’ve found out as I travel my local area.

  1. Reviews really do matter.
  2. People actually look at the photos I post for about a business.
  3. Negative reviews mean I probably won’t visit.
  4. I am constantly evaluating my store or restaurant experience.
  5. If I receive poor service, I will write about it.
  6. Even for lower end restaurants food presentation is important.
  7. People actually read what I post about a business.
  8. I do not tell business owners I am reviewing them.
  9. I myself select who I trade with based on online reviews.
  10. Reviews are more important than a nice website.

The bottom-line is that you are on display and being rated with every phone call, every visit, every plate that is served. You may have the best website, but if your visitors do not receive the royal treatment when they call or visit, you’ll set yourself up for a negative review. Get several and they can damage your business and sales!

To get savvy help in writing rebuttals to negative reviews, contact us today.

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How to Rebut a Negative Review

Do You Worry About What to Do About a Negative Review?
Do You Worry About What to Do About a Negative Review?

This is the struggle for businesses and it is real – get a bad online review and how do you deal with it and move beyond it.

First, you should not ignore a bad online review. That does not mean that you have to respond to each and every one, but you definitely want to think about your strategy and what to do if and when you get one.

Consider the following…

1. Review the legitimacy. Should you change something you are doing?

2. Decide if you should respond. Not every comment about your business deserves and needs a response.

3. If you do respond, don’t respond in anger. Craft your response and sit on it for several days, read and re-read your response. Make sure you are not venting.

4. If you know who left the review, try to fix the problem and then ask for an update to the review they have posted.

Negative reviews can be very damaging to your business but sometimes your own response can make it even worse. You should be regularly monitoring your business reputation online and looking at what others are saying about you. Especially as Google and Bing are now highlighting reviews that they find around the web and meshing them with location specific results in the Knowledge Graph side bar on their search pages in the four pack of location specific businesses.

For help on what to do with a negative review, ask for a short paid consultation.

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Looking for a Few Good Customers Who Want to Be Guinea Pigs

Guinea Pig
I’m Looking for a Few Guinea Pigs!

I’m looking for just a few guinea pigs for a service test that I am strongly considering for my business. And I am willing to discount my typical hourly rate for my test program to identify if what I feel can legitimately be done to boost reviews and remediate negative reviews works.

If you are a business owner who has been unfairly targeted by a competitor who has posted illegitimate reviews about your firm in order to boost there own placement please kindly consider giving me a call.

What I am considering doing is only totally legitimate – no bogus reviews, no hidden IP posting to Yelp.

Here’s what I am thinking of doing:

1. Create a website online review form and encourage your team to put this link at the bottom of all emails to solicit reviews that can be put on your own website coded with Google’s rich snippets.

2. Create a testimonials page on your website and house the top rated reviews there.

3. Set up a BlogSpot blog to showcase your online reviews as blog posts.

4. Call customers for you to solicit quotes that can be used in marketing on your behalf.

5. Monitor your online reputation to see if these website and off-site tactics help to remediate a reputation problem.

I won’t take all comers and will be selective over who I take on in this test and I’ll drop my hourly rate for these services by 20% for this limited test. You will need to allow us to use your results in our next whitepaper is you are selected as a test candidate.

If you think you’d like to be one of our test subjects, please send me an email.

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Your Online Reviews Really Matter

Ostrich
Don’t Stick Your Head in the Sand When You Get a Bad Review

This is the struggle for businesses and it is real – get a bad online review and how do you deal with it and move beyond it. First you should not ignore a bad online review. That does not mean that you have to respond to one, but you definitely want to think about your strategy when you get one.

1. Review the legitimacy. Should you change something you are doing?

2. Decide if and should you respond. Not every comment about your business deserves and needs a response.

3. If you do respond, don’t respond in anger. Craft your response and sit on it for several days, read and re-read your response. Make sure you are not venting.

4. If you know who left the review, try to fix the problem and then ask for an update to the review.

Negative reviews can be very damaging to your business but sometimes your own response can make it even worse. You should be regularly monitoring your business reputation online and looking at what others are saying about you. Especially as Google and Bing are now highlighting reviews that they find around the web and meshing them with location specific results in the Knowledge Graph side bar on their search pages.

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Doctors and Online Reviews

I read with interest an article in the Washing on Post on Sunday about how Doctors are combating online reviews by requiring patients to sign that they will not review the doctor or their services online in exchange for keeping the patient’s email address private from third party marketing use.

I found the article troubling, as I have used online reviews to select a doctor before and routinely review a physician online before scheduling an appointment. Of issue was what almost appeared to me to be blackmail – “don’t share your experience or we’ll sell your email to spammers”. Worse yet, was the closing paragraph where one physician reviewed stated that he/she routinely goes online and writes glowing fake reviews about themselves.

The importance of legitimate online reviews for both physician review and even for Google Places simply cannot be downplayed. As reviews become more important for online businesses and localized search results become more predominant in search results on Bing.com and Google.com I am expecting the search engines to roll out this year an authorization tie in to one of your social profiles to afford legitimacy. In fact, I feel that in light of this article clear identification and legitimacy of online reviews is overdue.

As to businesses and the physician in this case requiring a patient to sign away review rights for services to be provided, is simply draconian and worthy of boycott.

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Responding to Unfavorable Online Reviews

Getting a bad review online can be maddening, but don’t make it worse by responding without putting in a lot of thought to how your own response will be perceived by other future customers.

I have a client who had a very poor review. When you are in business, you can’t please everyone, but in this case the office manager shot off a rebuttal that when I read it, I just cringed. It made a bad situation much worse. It portrayed the office staff as angry, resentful, argumentative, and vindictive. OUCH!

Sometimes a bad review can be a wakeup call. When you get a bad review, step back and look at it, could it be truthful, or have a grain of truth to it? It is very important to take a careful look to make sure that there is not a change needed on your part such as a change in office policy, customer service, or staff retraining.

If you feel that a rebuttal must be made. Focus on the positive, express concern for a problem, offer special attention from top management to repair the situation. Encourage the reviewer to recontact the office for a refund, redo, or credit on future service. Don’t write a hot rebuttal that trashes the reviewer or accuses them of being unfair or dishonest. This will only work to hurt you and make you look like the review was really true based on your hot angry response.

You can’t fight unfair reviews, but you can work to soften the blow and maybe even become better by taking the review as constructive criticism. Just be careful in your response and work to repair a poor situation not to make it worse with your own comments.

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