negative reviews and comments in search results

As an online entrepreneur, business owner, ecommerce website owner, the most important thing is to build your brand to be trustworthy in order for customers to buy from you; right? One of the most common ways to earn trust is by always fulfilling and exceeding customers’ expectations and delivering a quality service that is exactly as promised on your website. In addition to that, encouraging customers to review your services either directly on your website or on social media can certainly help grow your business. Users who land on your website will more likely trust fellow customers and their opinion on your brand than your voice and what you state on the website.

But what happens when you get negative reviews and comments either on your website or on a third party website and social media? A lot of you may think that it’s better not to allow for customers to leave reviews as these may harm your reputation. However, this won’t really save your behind since if a customer wants to say bad stuff about you, he will. Customers will always find a way to state their mind either by going on their social media or by using third party websites which are all about reviewing brands and their services. And if you do get bad reviews, these will be easily found by any potential customer who googles your brand or a product associated to your brand.

For all the people who try to suppress negative comments by trying to erase or block these, Google will not help you at all. Bad reviews will always exist and will be shown in Google search results associated to your brand.

On top of that, if you consider that over 80% of people research online before buying a product and over 75% of users don’t scroll past the first page in Google, you may be well screwed.

Google negative search results

So here is what to do in case of negative reviews and comments in Google search results!

Why did you get negative reviews and comments in the first place?

negative online reviewsInstead of being angry at customers for not liking your brand, you should be thinking if they were right by any means. Was your service really bad? Was the product less than what you promised? Was the delivery time too slow? What made the customer unhappy?

After all, if you’re serious about your brand, making customers happy with the service you offer should be your ultimate goal. If your services are not up to standard, you should do something about it to redeem yourself. Talk to the customers who left negative reviews and comments and ask them what you could do to make their shopping experience with your brand more satisfactory. A customer that feels like a brand is actually listening to his complaints is a customer that may well change idea and start thinking positive about the brand, regardless of the previous negative shopping experience. If a customer changes his or her mind he may even be willing to delete the comment. WIN!

However, when talking to customers who were not satisfied with your services be very careful not to be too pushy in trying to change their mind as this may result in making your case even worse! Be patient and be polite, don’t use threats, don’t respond to negative language and don’t upset customers further!

If there is simply nothing you can do to make a customer delete the comment, let him or her be and try following one of our following tips.

Build positive stories about your brand on a long term basis

One of the most efficient ways of pushing down negative reviews and comments in search results is by replacing them with positive comments! Unfortunately Google never forgets so you will not be able to make negative comments disappear (unless the authors of these comments delete them). However, you can push them as far as the 100th page (so to speak), by encouraging your loyal customers to leave positive comments about your brand.

Also, do something newsworthy. Good online PR will get you positive mentions in online media and social media and these mentions are worth gold both to push down negative comments and generate more traffic to your website.

online PR

We can’t tell you what classifies as newsworthy when it comes to your brand as this depends on the industry and marketplace you’re in; however, launching awareness campaigns, products at amazing prices not available anywhere else, working with online influencers and sending them goodie bags are some of the examples that may generate good PR stories related to your brand.

Address the negative comments with a problem-solving attitudeproblem solving oriented

So you’ve received one or more negative comments and you tried everything there is to make that single customer change his mind. If the customer described an actual problem with your brand and the problem is real, you need to do something about it.

A great shopping experience is what every customer wants and that is exactly what your main business goal should be in the long run. Always look for ways to make your services better and always try to fix problems that customers are having with your services in a timely matter.

Once you find a solution, use your website to assure customers that your service is money worthy. There is no point in hiding you had issues if these are already known because of negative reviews. What you can do is build content on your website stating all the steps you took to make sure customers are satisfied when shopping on your site. They will appreciate the effort and and most of all, they will like a brand that is honest with customers and fixes things instead of ignoring issues.

Be more proactive on your social media

social media for businessSocial media accounts do get ranked by Google and if you are proactive and have a large audience, this will have an impact on Google search results.

Don’t make the mistake that many brands do by opening social accounts just to leave digital tumbleweeds roll all over them. The goal of using social media for business is to connect with potential customers and start building a long term relationship with them. Social media is a great way to promote your services, ask your followers what they like/don’t like, spread the word about your website and win over more customers and their loyalty.

Share entertaining content that is not always related to your marketplace but that does relate to your customers on a more personal level. Share informative content that customers will find useful in their every day lives. Share special promotions, price discounts, and competitions with prizes to be won in order to gain more followers interested in getting their hands on a product at a great price.

Start writing a blog and share your knowledge

When writing articles that are informative, relevant to your audience and anyone in your industry, this becomes a great tool to make your website rank higher in search results.

Regularly published quality content generate organic traffic (as quality content will contain long-tail keywords, keywords that match people’s Google searches), and organic traffic make your website more visited and important. Moreover, if your audience likes what they read they may well share the link to an article of yours on social media or even publish the link on their website/blog if they have one. These kind of links are worth gold to Google!

Create a page for positive mentions and reviewsecommerce positive reviews

Creating a page on your website where customers can leave their opinions, reviews and questions for you to answer is a great way to get positive mentions and earn the trust of users that land on your website and see you engage actively with your customers.

If you get a bad review left on the page that’s ok. Ask the customer how you can help him solve the problem and do so that other visitors can see the conversation. Your other customers will acknowledge your efforts to make all customers happy.

When getting positive reviews on other websites, either include these on your website or on your social media and let your audience know you appreciate being awarded and praised for all the work you do in making your customers satisfied.

For all of you wanting to contact Google and get rid of a comment

We’ve kept this one last for a good reason. A lot of you may want to do this right away; contact Google and ask if it’s possible to delete a bad article, comment, post. It is possible to do so but hold back your horses.

Such request will never be approved unless serious legal action is warranted and there is basis for it.

Finally, we would like to warn you against all those who promise to make you first in Google search results when customers search for services or products just like the ones you sell.  Also, steer clear of professionals who guarantee to fix all your reputation management issues in a few days. Nothing can be fixed overnight and most of all, nothing can be fixed unless you work hard on building a good relationship with your customers and audience on a long term basis.

customer relations

Save your money and rather than investing in some agency or person who promises wonders, invest in your business and making the shopping experience on your website a great one for customers!