How to Respond to Negative Reviews Online

updated on 15 November 2020

+ Free Response Templates for Negative Reviews

5 tips for businesses and tradies

Negative online reviews can happen to any business or tradie, but don’t fear — there are ways to protect your business and reputation.

You should always respond!

A response — even to a bad review — is better than no response.

Just like a face-to-face business, if a customer complains you still need to reply. But online, rather than a few customers witnessing the complaint, thousands of people will. Make sure you don’t avoid bad feedback; this will reflect poorly on your reputation, and customers will lose trust in your brand or your services.

Always keep your cool

Bad online reviews for businesses or Tradies can be very frustrating; its best to put down your device and take a breather.

When you are ready, grab our free templates and begin constructing a professional review response that will calm your customer and gain trust and respect from future clients. A business or Tradie that takes criticism on board and uses it effectively will be respected by customers more than a business that argues or ignores them.

And remember, it has been found that nearly 50% of customers will still consider visiting a business if they have dealt with bad reviews professionally.

Here are some review response templates to get you started...

Free Response Template 1

Dear [reviewer’s name], thank you, we value your feedback. We sincerely apologise that your experience did not meet your expectations. It does not happen often, and we will endeavour to avoid this in the future.

We would be happy to speak with you, please reach out to us at [Insert contact details] and we can further discuss this incident. We are always trying to improve our [products/services] and we’d like another chance to provide a better experience for you.

Thank you [your name].

Based on the circumstances of the negative review, your response may be slightly different, but most importantly sympathise and show that you acknowledge and understand what they are experiencing. Denying that the poor service ever happened, or discounting their opinion is one way to enrage the customer, and the thousands reading it.

Free Response Template 2

Dear [reviewer’s name], thank you for bringing this issue to our attention. We take pride in our work and we sincerely apologise for your experience. We’ll investigate this problem further and we’ll strive to improve our [service/product].

Please reach out to us and contact [insert contact details] if you would like to discuss this further. Please feel free to come back and visit us again because we would love a second chance. Please ask for me, [your name] on your next visit, and I’ll make sure you have a pleasant experience.

How to respond to blank negative reviews

Blank negative reviews have no content, just a low rating, but make sure you still respond. You may not be able to include as much information in your response, but you can still appear understanding and professional.

Free Response Template 3 — for blank reviews

Thank you for taking the time to review your experience. We are sorry that we did not meet your expectations. Please contact us at [insert contact details], and we’ll be happy to discuss this further.

We hope you give us another chance to provide a great service.

Free Response Template 4 — How to deal with fake online reviews

Again, make sure to respond, but stay professional and brief.

Dear [reviewer’s name], thank you for your feedback. We are very concerned about your review and we are very sorry that you feel this way. We have been unable to locate your information in our client database and we wish to urgently address this issue, could you please contact us on [insert contact details].

If you’re using Google, and you’re sure it’s a fake review, you can press the three dots in the top right corner and press ‘Flag as inappropriate’.This allows you to tell Google that it contains incorrect content. It does not allow you to say it’s fake exactly, but you can choose an option that fits the best.

You could also try visiting the Google My Business Help Page, and report the review to the support team by email, chat or ‘request a call’ options.

If this fails, the next best thing is to contact Google My Business via their Twitter account and direct message them.

We know that bad online reviews are tough, your business is your baby, your livelihood, and all reviews can be hard to manage. If you would like some professional assistance to manage your online reviews and business profiles, contact us for some insider help. Click here to learn more.

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