Online Reputation: How to Monitor and Respond to Client Reviews

While considering writing this post about how to track your online reputation, I remembered a day when I was in the quad at Woodrow Wilson Jr.. High and Marnie James breathlessly asked me, “Do you know what Ben is saying about you?”

I needed to know.

While it turned out to be nothing, clients right now are referring to and submitting their testimonials about your retail shop to several online social networking networks.

Do you know what your clients are saying?

As you hope it is nothing, understanding makes all of the difference between competing and closing your doors. In accordance with Chatmeter.com:

  • 84 percent of Americans say online reviews have an influence in their decision to buy.
  • 97 percent of review readers locate the review they read to be true. A couple bad reviews can quickly drive away business.

And there are a whole lot of places they will talk about you and post their testimonials. The first of which is Facebook, where almost a billion people hangout during the day.

Your customers may be sharing their negative or positive reviews on Twitter, Angle’s listing, Foursquare or LinkedIn, – even making a video about their experience with your new on YouTube.

If you’re a hotel, TripAdvisor boasts 100 million consumers. Yelp, which was largely restaurants, now has testimonials from lots of companies and services.

In actuality, a recent study in Harvard Business School showed a direct correlation between star ratings on Yelp and earnings at a small business.

Why the upturn?

Mainly, new shoppers are going into the’net either on their telephones or other apparatus and assessing reviews before buying. Despite the fact that they might not understand the reviewers on Yelp or a few of the other networks – the more stars and positives, the more likely they are to shop with you.

That is a game-changer because only a couple years ago, shoppers would only expect the direct mailer you blanketed the area with. Now they will check before seeing .

That’s why you must monitor what they’re saying, bad or good.

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Monitoring Your Online Reputation

So you understand you will need to understand what posters are posting, but how to do it? Set up an automatic alert to be sent to you if your company is recorded or reviewed on the internet. I use Google alarms http://www.google.com/alerts.

As you can set it to send a set weekly or once every day, I would rather set it to”as-it-happens” as things can get out of control immediately and go viral. On a side note, you may even set one up for a rival, a shopping centre you’re contemplating getting a tenant of, or for a significant product line you take.

You also need to set up an alert on Twitter to allow you to know when your company is mentioned in a Tweet. Twitter is particularly important for your online reputation because people with smartphones use Twitter all the time.

Your customers are probably already using Twitter and you also wish to listen to what they say. If you use TweetDeck, you can simply add a column to the name of your company with a hashtag facing it. (For me it’s #theretaildoctor.)

A fantastic website for this, even if you’re not on Twitter, is Tweetbeep http://tweetbeep.com/ a website that could email you alerts.

Still not certain you’re monitoring as many websites as you should? Consult your shoppers what Web sites they use to find companies like yours.

Responding to Negative Reviews

Customers gripe for a whole lot of reasons. Maybe they did not get waited on quickly enough, or perhaps a coupon died and your helper did not honor it.

The fantastic thing is that when they do since you have set up the alarms – you can react with an internet message that those prospective customers can see.

And thwart their effect.

Posting a response shows you’re listening to your buyers and taking action. Write your post in words which directly address the whining poster’s concerns.

You also need to personalize your message with words such as,”I have the company with my wife Mary and we’re sorry to hear you had a bad experience, Joe.” Your post should also note that you thank them for their opinions and let them know how you’re improving whatever the reviewer deemed you unsatisfactorily.

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If it is actually serious, invite the buyer to get in touch with you and include your email address or telephone number. It shows you’re trying. Exactly like in your shop, a carefully written reply can turn a negative situation into a positive one. You can even turn an angry person into a raving fan.

Yes, there are”haters,” out there who simply love to port online. Since they have a free forum, they like to tell everyone they had been wronged. When you react to them, just tell those negative reviewers that you just took their opinions seriously and are working to make your company even better.

Do not encourage them. When you look at negative reviews as casual shopper surveys which enable you to identify and rectify company issues, you can welcome the opportunity to respond as opposed to sweat the review.

Make sense?

Responding to Bogus Reviews

Let’s face it, some testimonials could be coming out of a rival or someone looking to get a discount on their next product.

That’s why you will need to respond. But be considerate like one owner I know who ended his comment with,”I encourage viewers to read another 100+ testimonials who gave us five stars.”

Some people will offer you a bad review in hopes you will contact them with deals like half off a future purchase.

Do not take the bait or you’re going to be riddled with negative comments searching for the exact same deal. Instead, post a fair response that conveys the actions you’re taking to supply an exceptional experience.

Responding to Positive Customer Reviews

Like your employees, we often just notice what went wrong. But when fans rave about you, exactly like a worker who excels for you — you want to notice.

A simple”Thanks so much for the compliment” can do to get a general compliment, but take some time to address any particular topics the buyer has said to customize the response.

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Bonus tip: you can also use these strategies for responding to commenters on your site or Facebook Fan page.

Adding Juice to Your Client Reviews

Print out your great reviews and post them on a wall in your shop, possibly under a headline such as”Raving Fans of Our Company.”

Copy them to your site and to your Facebook page, also. Bonus tip: Do not be afraid to ask people to post good reviews in a followup email or even in the cash register.

Again, do not offer rewards such as this 1 from GAP for doing this.

Consumer groups, in addition to internet sites, are not keen on that. While Google Alerts is the one I use to track my online reputation as it is free, you might want to check out a number of these too: Chatmeter or Steprep.

See also, 9 Easy Ways How To Find Loyal Retail Clients To Write Reviews

In Sum

Managing your online reputation is not hard but it does require your focus when you’re looking for how to draw customers.