How to respond to Google and Facebook reviews

If you run a small business, you’ve likely heard the phrase “the customer is king”, which emphasises the value of keeping customers satisfied. It’s an age-old sentiment, but one that’s especially true in the digital age, as customer reviews appear prominently on your Google My Business and Facebook pages. 

This can be a double-edged sword, depending on their experiences. However, business owners should always respond to reviews as consumers find businesses that do this 1.7 times more trustworthy than those who don’t. 

In this blog, we’re discussing the best ways to respond to Google and Facebook reviews – whether they’re glowing or scathing!

 

Where to see and reply to your reviews on Google and Facebook

To respond to Google My Business reviews, open your business profile first. You can then select the ‘Reviews’ tab on the left side of the page. This shows the latest reviews for your business, then you can simply click ‘Reply’ to respond to them.

When responding to Facebook reviews, avoid accidentally replying with your personal account. Instead, respond as your business by going to its Facebook page and clicking ‘Reviews’. Find the review you want to address – below it, you’ll see a box saying ‘Comment as (your business)’. Then go ahead and compose a suitable reply!

Responding to positive reviews 

As a business owner, it’s a fantastic feeling to receive a positive customer review. It’s even better to know that this review will appear on Google’s search results for all to see. 

Here are a few tips to crafting a polite and professional response:

  • Address the customer by their name, to sound more personal.
  • Be sure to thank the customer in a specific, tailored way. Show that you appreciate and understand what they’ve said – rather than just writing a generic (and rather lazy) “thank you”.
  • Respond in good time. It’s only polite, as the customer has gone out of their way to boost your reputation.
  • Include an authentic and helpful call-to-action at the end. For example, this might be asking if there’s anything else you can help with.

It’s also worth sharing these reviews on social media, as positive words from genuine customers go a long way towards building trust in your business.

Responding to negative reviews 

Negative reviews can be disheartening and frustrating to read. But remember, you’re judged not just on the review, but on your response too – so don’t simply ignore them. Always aim to “respond in public, resolve in private”.

The best approach is to reply with empathy and professionalism:

  • Take your time to understand exactly why the customer feels disappointed. Don’t respond in a rush leaving a snarky comment, and don’t just keep copying and pasting the same standard reply!
  • Reply in good time – this shows that your business is responsive and efficient. 
  • Thank them for providing their feedback.
  • Apologise for their poor experience – and own your mistakes if they’re genuine.
  • Reach out to the customer or ask them to contact you privately to further discuss their complaints (or if you already have their contact details, proactively get in touch).
  • Finish by including your name to emphasise that the response has come from a person and not a bot.

 

I hope this blog helps you write professional responses to online reviews. For more information on this topic, see Chapter 10 – Ratings, Reviews and Recommendations – of our Embrace the Space book – which delves much deeper into how to get them, and how to reply! 

For further advice with this or any other aspect of your digital marketing, get in touch at any time.

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