Finding the Positive in Negative Reviews

Negative reviews for your business are hard to look at. You might just want to ignore them entirely, or stress over how you can fix it. Sometimes you can do something to fix things, but more often than not that review is here to stay. Some people are just negative and there is nothing you can do to change them or their review, but you can use that review to your advantage.

Even a negative review has a positive side for you and your business. This blog is here to help you find that.

Too Good To Be True

Lots of businesses strive to have all five star reviews, but achieving this isn’t necessarily a good thing. When reviews are all perfectly positive, a customer often looks at that and thinks it must be too good to be true. It makes people suspicious. Those negative reviews are what make you seem more authentic.

Of course that doesn’t mean you want a ton of negative reviews, just enough for your business to be real. Everyone knows that we’re humans and humans aren’t perfect, therefore if a customer wants a business that actually cares they know it’s not going to be perfect either.

You do want a few not so perfect reviews, but keep in mind that if you’re getting a really high number of negative reviews, then something else is going on with your business.

“Believe it or not, a certain ratio of good to bad reviews will actually increase conversions by up to 18 percent. The theory is that a few less-than-stellar reviews lends authenticity and helps you overcome “too good to be true” syndrome.” – Level343

Get Them Back

Negative reviews give you the chance to win a customer back instead of losing them forever. If a customer had a problem with a product or your business and didn’t share it, then that gives you no way to know what happened and therefore no way to fix it.

If a negative review contains a problem with your product and service, that review gives you the opportunity to make it right. If you do, you might win that customer back. If they’d never shared that in the negative review, you’d never have had the chance to fix things. 

Not all negative reviews are going to contain problems you can solve, but surely some will. Don’t focus on the ones that are purely spiteful and angry—often they’ll be nothing you can do to change those people’s minds. Instead, focus on the ones that are solvable and win back whatever customers you can.

Learn Whenever You Can

One of the most important things that negative reviews provide is learning opportunities. No business is perfect. There are always things to fix and negative reviews are the best place to find out what those things are, especially if the same things are showing up more than once.

“Sometimes negative reviews can offer major insights into how we can improve our business. Pay attention to what the review is about. Is it a specific staff member? Is it a product issue? Is it a technical problem? Is it a recurring complaint? Treat reviews as a learning experience and a way to get insights into your company that you may not have been aware of.” – Like A Voss

If the same problem shows up more than once or twice, that tells you that it’s a vital thing to fix. Without those negative reviews, you might have never noticed for yourself.

Not everyone is going to share their problems in reviews. A lot of people will simply stay quiet and stop supporting your business. Be grateful for those negative reviews. They give you something to learn from when silence does not.

No matter what, it’s important that you respond to all negative feedback. Even if you’re not going to change that customer’s mind, it shows to the people that see that review that you actually care.

In the end, you’re not going to ever be able to stop people from leaving negative comments, so instead of feeling bad over them, figure out ways you can use them. There is always a positive side!

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