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How to answer reviews on Google (templates included)

How to answer reviews on Google - Templates included

Ever had a sup-par or outright lousy experience with a business? We know you have, because we have had them too! 

A bad customer experience is bound to happen at some point to any business with a customer-facing service or product, which is essentially every business out there. The service or product can and will naturally have days where everything does not go as planned and leaves a customer with a less than good experience. The key is to recognize this and actively engage in the discussions going on in your business listings and other social channels. 

A good review confirms that it is doing well and that customers are happy with the help they have gotten from the business's service or product. A negative review, at first might seem scary or daunting, could become the biggest reward in the long run. A negative review is an indication of a bad experience at any stage of the customer journey, pinpointing in which of these stages the customer has had a bad experience is crucial for concretizing the next steps.

Valuable customer insights from reviews

Establishing at which point of the journey the customer was left unsatisfied could be as easy as just reading the review. In these cases, you won’t need extra measures to get to the bottom of your issue. For example, if a customer has gotten an bad salad at the business and mentions this in the review, you would look twice when cutting up your next bowl.

The same goes for if the customer mentions impolite staff, uncleaned tables, or stale coffee, you’ll immediately know what to do. The challenge comes in when the customer leaves a one-star review and does not elaborate on the issues they’ve faced.

Should you answer these one-star reviews with no extra elaboration? Yes, absolutely! We compiled our top tips for answering bad reviews in this article, have a look at it.

We encourage you to seek insights from these one-star reviewers by replying to them and letting them know that you would like to hear what went wrong and how you could improve the experience in the future. Either you provide them with an e-mail address or phone number to where they can contact you for further discussion.

The other method is to request the customer to update their review with an explanation of what happened. Yes, you read that right, you can and you have been able to update your reviews on Google for a long time. Since your customer will get notified once their review is answered, you have the perfect opportunity to incentivize them to update their review and get you the knowledge you need to improve your product or service.  

We wrote about why review management is crucial to your business in this article, go give it a read.

Even though we encourage discussions with customers on Google, we do want to point out that incentivizing good reviews and replies are against Google’s content and review policies. Paying, incentivising or encouraging the posting of content that does not represent a genuine experience is going to get flagged and possibly suspend your business profile.

Now on to the concrete part of this article, the review templates. Review templates can help you effectively manage your reviews on multiple platforms and as long as you word them right you’ll get the necessary information to further improve your business.

Whats a good review reply? 

A good review reply should be thought out, semi-short, and structured in a way that both thanks the customer for leaving the review and further develops the discussion in case there needs to be one. Do not be afraid of making the reply personal, and tailored to the specific review. Although this might take up more of your time, we have a couple of features on our platform that you can use in every review to make them more personal.

When replying to good reviews, you first;  want to thank them for taking time out of their day to review your business, second; point out something that they mentioned and third; invite them back in. Oh and always add their name! You want the customer to feel acknowledged and heard, this is a small way to get the reply more personalized. In our platform, we made it so that the reviewer's name is included automatically in the reply.

Personalized, short and sweet, and adding a possibility to continue discussions elsewhere if needed, got it, now to the actual templates.👇

Good review replies

Here are examples of review replies to good (3-5 star) reviews:

Thank you for the review *name*! We are happy to hear about your pleasant experience 🙌

Hi, *name*! Happy to see that your visit was worth five stars🤩. Come back soon!

Thank you for the great review, *name*! We appreciate you taking the time for it. Hope to see you again soon! 😁

Thank you for the review, *name*! We love to see feedback from happy clients. We hope to see you soon again, make sure to bring your friends with you. 🤩

Neutral review replies

A neutral review can be either positive or negative, so make sure you read the reviews thoroughly to get a full understanding of the situation, what was good and what could have been done better. If there are neutral reviews with no elaboration to them, make sure you let them know you would like to continue the discussion, either via mail/phone or by them updating their review.

Examples of review replies to neutral (2-4 star) reviews:

Thank you for taking the time to give us a review, *name*! 😊 We would love to hear what we could have done to fill up those remaining stars. We hope to see you again!

*name*, thank you for the review! 🙏 We would love to hear what we could have done better, please consider updating your review with some feedback. We hope to see you again!

*name*, thank you for taking the time to give us feedback! It is always valuable to hear what we could have done better. We hope to see you revisit us! 😊

Negative review replies

Examples of review replies to negative (1-2 star) reviews:

For the negative reviews, you want to be extra cautious and make sure you understand the customer's issue correctly. Make sure you know what steps you are able to take based on the feedback before answering, this way you can ensure an honest feedback loop. Let them know that you are sorry and reassure them that steps are being taken to better improve the product or service. 

Thank you for the review, *name*! We are sad to hear that your expectations were not met. Your feedback is essential for us to improve our service. Hopefully, you can give us a chance to serve you again! ☺️

Hi, *name*! I'm sorry to hear that your experience did not go as expected. If you wish to discuss this further, please contact our customer service *email*. We would love to know how we could make up for your unsatisfactory experience. Hope to see you again in the future! 😊

Hi there, *name*! We appreciate the honest review. We are sorry that we did not meet your expectations this time. We have forwarded the feedback to the location’s staff and we'll be working to ensure that this doesn't happen again. Hopefully, we’ll see you back with us in the future! 😊

Thank you for the review, *email*! We are sorry to hear that our service left you unsatisfied this time. This is not the experience we want to give you. We take all feedback really seriously and seek opportunities to develop our service. Hopefully, you will give us a chance to serve you again!✨

Hi, *name*! Thank you for sharing your experience. 😃 We will discuss your feedback with the team and review what we could have done better. We hope to see you again!

Hi, *name*. We apologize for the bad experience you seem to have had with us. If you want, you could update your review and let us know what went wrong. This way, we know what to improve for your next visit. Fingers crossed, you’re able to give us another chance.

Valuable feedback

All feedback is good feedback, in one way or another. Obviously, if you’re getting bombarded with only bad reviews, you would seek measures to ensure that they stop. But do not be afraid of a couple of bad reviews here and there, they keep you on your toes and make sure you are reminded to sometimes have a check on your operations, maybe changing one small part of your processes changes the whole trajectory of your business.

Ok we’re not talking quantum physics, it’s Google reviews, but don’t leave them unanswered, you might lose an opportunity to learn, grow and connect with your customers.

Interested in further developing your review management? Perhaps wanting to scale your operations regarding business listings reviews? Get started on a 14-day free trial with Mobal.

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Automate your business listings management

Manage all your listings in a single sleek dashboard and easily update multiple locations with a few clicks

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Turn reviews on Google into in-store sales

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Learn how to increase discovery and sales on Google

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