Some agents are scared of online reviews because they fear negative feedback. Mistakenly, some agents think that bad reviews = bad business.
This couldn’t be further from the truth.
Clients, especially millennials, are accustomed to using the internet to search for reviews and feedback, and they understand that legitimate feedback will always be a mix of the good and the bad. In fact, a lack of negative feedback or the lack of any feedback (positive or negative) can often cause readers to doubt the credibility of your online reputation, much in the same way that too-good-to-be-true testimonials carry little weight for most people.
Additionally, a negative review is an opportunity if it’s dealt with correctly. By handling it (and the reviewer) appropriately, a negative review can have as significant an impact (or more) than a positive one. By engaging with a client who’s had a negative experience, you are showing others that you’re attentive, a good listener, and you’re interested in improving your service.
So, what should you do when you encounter a negative review left by a legitimate client? Here are four best practices for properly handling it to help you walk away with your reputation intact.
Before you even start addressing the issues at hand, put yourself in the reviewer’s shoes. Then, instead of discrediting their opinion, show that you’re truly interested in hearing their side of things and doing whatever you can to leave them satisfied. You’re being empathic towards them and it will likely be appreciated. To start, simply ask: “what caused you to feel that way” and ask why they felt the need to share a negative review’?
- Be Professional
One of the most damaging things for a business to do is to respond to negative reviews in a way that makes them look petty and unprofessional. Do not attack the reviewer or their credibility, and avoid arguing with them over their opinions.
- Present the Facts
Instead of lashing out at a past client over a negative review, take the time to set the record straight. Rather than using judgmental or derogatory terms to discredit the reviewer, present the facts of the situation and leave it up to readers to make their own analysis. In many cases, the best thing that you can do is to just acknowledge their dissatisfaction, thank them for providing you with feedback to improve your business, and take care to avoid the same type of problem in the future. If the reviewer does have a legitimate concern that you feel you can resolve, don’t be afraid to let them know that you’d love to speak with them offline in order to try to come to a solution
- Continue to seek out positive reviews
Having one or two negative reviews won’t be the end of the world for your business – as long as you have plenty of other positive feedback that portrays your performance and dedication to client satisfaction. If you’re really worried about the impact that a negative review will have on your reputation, your best approach is to increase the number of other ones that are positive. This doesn’t mean creating or promoting fraudulent reviews, but instead focusing on getting past clients to take a few minutes and leave an account of their experiences.
Learn more about RankMyAgent, an online platform that connects Real Estate Professionals to Homeowners by using the power of reviews to get them recognized, generate leads, and build their online reputation.
RankMyAgent has been embedded in the RE/MAX Launchpad portal, giving RE/MAX INTEGRA agents unparalleled access to user-generated reviews with a single sign-on. Head their now to easily access and start using RankMyAgent today.