Today’s web is a vast universe of informational and promotional content. Businesses don’t have control over everything that is said about them. Before the existence of the web, consumers had two main sources of information related to the purchase of products: sales documentation and the opinion of their immediate entourage.
Online reviews now allow customers to choose a company based on third-party opinions. This source of external information allows them to be better informed to choose an organization that will meet their needs and expectations!
In this context, it is the role of companies to constantly monitor comments left on their online review platforms. An organization with an excellent reputation will benefit from many advantages!
How can you have good customer review management to differentiate yourself from your competitors? Follow our best practices to optimize your customer review strategy!
The importance of customer review management for businesses
Regardless of your industry, customer review management should be a concern for your business. This is a direct point of contact with your current and potential customers. When a company has good customer review management, it also keeps an eye on its customer satisfaction. Such proactivity puts your prospects in confidence, which represents a considerable revenue potential. Overall, implementing a good customer review management strategy is important. This is definitely a good investment of time!
Here are 6 benefits linked to a good management of your customer reviews:
- A better brand image;
- More online visibility;
- An optimized organic referencing (SEO);
- A better rate of customer loyalty, since you demonstrate a desire to improve your answers to online reviews;
- Greater ability to attract new customers, as your positive feedback proves you are a trustworthy company;
- The increase in your sales.
Steps to a good customer review management strategy
1. Optimize your presence on your profiles and online review platforms
To ensure good customer review management, you must first optimize your presence on your online review platforms. By updating your information, your customers will be assured that your profiles are still active, which will encourage them to leave you reviews online. This is definitely a must for acquiring a better reputation!
With that in mind, depending on your business, take the time to optimize your presence on the following platforms:
- Google Business Profile;
The more you are present on multiple online review platforms, the more visibility you will have on search engines. By being active across multiple networks, you can also get more reviews online. This will help you attract many prospects and build a community of customers loyal to your brand!
As mentioned earlier, when it comes to customer review management, it is important to complete the creation of your profiles. To help you, here are 10 tips to follow to ensure you have a credible and optimized profile, including on Google Business Profile :
- Update your company profile information regularly;
- Write a complete description of your business by promoting your mission and services;
- Have a visual identity similar to your website;
- Promote high-quality images to promote your services, products and the professionalism of your employees;
- Add your different points of sale on Google Maps;
- Include keywords related to local SEO;
- Answer all your customer reviews.
2. Send customer satisfaction surveys
When it comes to customer review management, it is crucial to know your clients’ overall level of satisfaction with your services. After all, satisfied customers will leave positive online reviews. Therefore, the very first step in customer review management is to send satisfaction surveys. With an online review software such as InputKit, you will be able to send automated and personalized satisfaction surveys (SMS or email) at the right time, 1 to 2 hours after the experience.
Through these surveys, you will be able to assess your clients’ satisfaction with your services and products. This will help you determine your clients’ Net Promoter Score (NPS), a key indicator to know if they would recommend you to their loved ones.
For example, ask, “How likely is it that you would recommend our facility to a colleague or family member?” , then propose a numerical scale response (0 = Unlikely and 10 = Very likely). With this question, you will be able to classify respondents into three categories:
- Ambassadors (score between 9 and 10): These customers are the promoters of your brand. Very satisfied with your services, they are likely to recommend you to their entourage.
- Passives (score between 7 and 8): These customers are rather indifferent to your services. You need to analyze their responses to understand how to turn them into ambassadors.
- Detractors (score between 0 and 6): These customers are dissatisfied with your products and services. You need to correct that quickly if you want them to come back to your company.
Based on the feedback received, you can then implement a continuous improvement strategy to create a better customer experience. This unique experience is completely personalized according to the real expectations of your customers and is a must to set you apart from your competitors. Such dedication to the well-being of your customers will create a WOW effect that will definitely make them want to come back to your business!
In addition, thanks to a good customer review management strategy, you show your customers that their satisfaction is your priority. In this way, you will create authentic and lasting bonds that will last through time.
3. Target your ambassadors and direct them to your online review platforms
Once you’ve targeted your ambassadors, it’s time to maximize their reach! What better way to do this than to invite them to leave you a positive review on your online review platforms? This will allow you to build a great reputation while promoting your brand!
How can this be achieved in practice? Via InputKit, after a positive score, automate the sending of an email or SMS invitation to leave a positive online review on the platform of your choice (Facebook, Google Business Profile, etc.). This avoids manual mailings that can be time-consuming. This feature will save you many hours related to customer review management.
To convince them to leave you a positive online review, tell your customers how important their opinion is to the community. This information-rich feedback will better inform potential customers so they can make an informed decision. This way, your ambassadors can help them discover your products and services!
Overall, today’s technology solutions allow you to target your ambassadors and then suggest they share their positive opinions on your online review platforms. Seize your chance to maximize your collection of positive customer reviews!
4. Respond to positive and negative reviews by following good practices
Whether they are positive or negative, it is crucial to respond to all your customer reviews. By keeping a regular watch on what is said about you, you can analyze the strengths and weaknesses of your customer experience. This will allow you to establish a strategy for continuous improvement of the customer experience based on the expectations and concrete needs of your customers.
In addition, this customer review management will allow you to establish direct contact with your community. According to a study conducted by Social Media Today, 52% of customers expect a response from the company on online review platforms. Responding to online reviews is a must to understand and build customer loyalty!
However, it can be complex to ensure excellent management of customer reviews. How do you respond to all your online feedback, both positive and negative? To help you, here are the best practices for customer review management.
Best practices for responding to positive online reviews
- Respond within 24 hours;
- Personalize your response with the customer’s name and the type of service received;
- Thank the customer for their time spent with your company;
- Highlight how important this positive feedback is and will be shared with the team;
- Encourage the customer to return to your company by promoting upcoming events or promotions not to miss;
- Sign your name to customize your approach.
Best practices for responding to negative customer reviews
- Respond within 24 hours;
- Personalize your response with the customer’s name and the type of service received;
- Thank the customer, then apologize for the poor quality of the experience;
- With empathy and professionalism, validate the customer’s emotion and do not try to contradict the customer’s feelings.
- Explain the reason behind the bad customer experience, if applicable;
- Stress to the customer that their comments are heard and will be used to improve the quality of your services in the future;
- Invite the customer to share details of their dissatisfaction with a more private medium (store appointments, email exchanges, phone calls);
- Summarize the situation to make sure you understand what the customer is saying, then propose a relevant solution;
- Follow up with the client to ensure that client dissatisfaction has been resolved;
- Sign your name so that the dissatisfied customer feels they are talking to a human and not a robot.
5. Act quickly with your detractors
According to CSM’s study, each dissatisfied client would deter up to 15 people from doing business with you. In this sense, a single customer dissatisfaction can damage your reputation! While it may be tempting to focus solely on ambassadors when applying customer review management, we strongly advise against this tactic.
To avoid negative word-of-mouth, show your detractors that you care about their well-being. In terms of customer review management, start the conversation with them proactively and seek to understand the reason behind their dissatisfaction. Take note of their criticisms and share them with your employees to prevent such a situation from happening again. Finally, offer them compensation to rectify the unpleasant experience. Discount coupon, exclusive promotion, VIP pass, a full refund of a product or shipping costs: this compensation will provide a WOW effect. This is a great strategy to apologize to them and show them that you are trying to correct the situation!
Such customer review management is a mark of empathy that proves to your detractors that their opinion is considered and listened to. By making corrections to your customer experience, you show that you are putting in place concrete solutions to improve yourself as a company. Your dissatisfied customers will therefore be more likely to give you a second chance and perhaps even change their opinion online.
Remember that if you quickly rectify the situation, you have a good chance of turning your detractors into promoters of your brand. Keep this in mind when thinking about your negative customer reviews management!
Finally, how can you improve your customer review management? Follow our best practices to build a better reputation online!
Optimize your presence on your online review platforms, especially by regularly updating your information. Then, send automated and personalized customer satisfaction surveys to assess your customer satisfaction. Target your ambassadors by inviting them to leave positive reviews on your online review platforms and then respond to all feedback, both positive and negative. Finally, quickly rectify the situation in case of customer dissatisfaction to avoid generating negative word-of-mouth.
With these tips, you can optimize your customer review management to maintain authentic and lasting relationships with your customers. A proactive company facing feedback will have a lot more credibility and will attract more customers!