Customers have become more vocal about the service they receive and won’t hesitate to use social media, especially to vent their dissatisfaction.
With hundreds or possibly thousands of competitors in your sector, finding ways to differentiate and grow your business is more important than ever.
Customer reviews are probably the simplest and most powerful way to build a great online reputation quickly for any business.
“Past customer reviews help endorse a company’s product or service”
The simple fact is that reviews will help potential customers decide whether they should buy your product or service.
While in the past people would have relied on ‘word of mouth’ from family, friends or work colleagues, these days everyone searches online when they want to find reviews about a business they are thinking of using.
According to independent research, 82% of consumers reported that reading past customer reviews made the buying decision easier.
“Not having reviews for your business looks outdated and unprofessional”
Customer reviews are a simple way to not only build a good online reputation, but in this age of social media, they are a great way to attract new customers.
The downside of collecting reviews is that a bad or negative review will occur at some stage, they are a part and parcel of the digital world we live in. It is a consumer’s right to leave feedback and most people understand that a business will have the odd bad review.
“It’s human nature, you can’t please everyone”
Clearly, negative reviews will impact a potential customer’s buying decision, so there are positive and negative aspects to consider.
Firstly, by actively collecting reviews, your business will more than likely have a larger quantity of positive reviews, so if a negative review does come along, it simply gets diluted in among the good ones. That’s good planning.
If a bad review does occur, don’t panic and bear in mind why reviews are important in the first place, they help develop trust and demonstrate transparency.
“Customers are more likely to trust brands and businesses that aren’t afraid to be transparent.”
From a potential customers perspective, when they see a negative review, they will be more interested in how you have dealt with the problem.
So, rather than viewing bad reviews negatively or as a threat to potential sales, see them as an opportunity learn about how to improve your business. After all, a customer has taken the time to share some information about your product or service.
Consider the alternative – the customer could have gone away dissatisfied and not said anything. Not only would you lose a customer, you would not know the reason why.
As much as a positive review is reassuring, it’s equally important for customers to know that your business is listening and that if a problem occurs, you handled it professionally and openly.
Whatever you think about customer reviews they add to the authenticity of your business and are an important part of building trust with potential new customers.
Author: Gavin Mullins, CEO of Eooro.com
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