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What should I do if I receive a negative review on my Facebook Page?

No matter what you do it is impossible to please everyone. Maybe you had a bad day, and the client was able to pick up on it by how you acted towards them or how service was? Or,  maybe the end result wasn’t what they hoped for and they were slightly inconvenienced and that left a bad taste in their mouth about the whole experience.

So, how do you handle that moment when you check your page and there is a less than favorable review? 

First things first, check if the review is legitimate. 

It’s no secret that there are going to be people in our lives who don’t want to see us succeed. It could be someone your business competes with, or it could be someone who really took your opposing opinion to heart. 

Unfortunately, negative reviews cannot be deleted easily.  Also, at this time, you can only report written reviews, meaning that if you only received a low rating, there is nothing you can do.

However, if the review simply attacks you and has nothing to do with your service or products, you can request that Facebook remove that review. These are considered spam reviews, which go against Facebook standards. Once Facebook reviews the report, they will decide if it should be removed, and, as long as it checks the boxes, this shouldn’t be a problem.

In the meantime, you can find a cordial way to reply to the Facebook review. State that you are sorry they have such a negative opinion of you or your business. Note, however, that in trying to remedy the situation, you have checked through your appointments/receipts and are unable to find when you serviced them.  You do, however, recognize them from a disagreement on another page. By making this statement, you are publicly pointing out that they have never been a client of yours.

The review was written by an actual client. What now?

You cannot just delete the review. This would not be helpful because people notice these things, and it makes you seem petty and untrustworthy. Clients appreciate transparency when it comes to a law firm they are looking to patronize or hire.

Saying nothing can speak volumes as well. Clients who leave negative reviews can post in other places, such as your local bulletin or other local groups.   Unhappy clients can bring their complaints to those pages to “warn” and get support from others to feel justified.

If the client has a negative experience, you must do your best to address it. How you respond can make or break the image of your business. Think of it as another opportunity to show that your professional attitude extends beyond the doors of your company and that you truly care about the client’s experience every step of the way. Even if the review mentions something that you disagree with, respond in a way that acknowledges how they feel. State that you wish to make amends or will take their review to heart so that you can do better with future clients. 

For Example:

“Hello XXXX. I would just like to respond and say, on behalf of the office, we are so sorry that you had a negative experience with us. We always strive to do what is best for our clients, and it troubles us that we left you feeling dissatisfied. We would love to have you back as a client, if we are needed, but we understand that you may have reservations about that. With this in mind, we thank you for choosing us, and letting us know that there are ways we can continue to improve.”

Of course, you can add anything that gives it a more personal touch, but this base response addresses their concerns and misgivings, while also giving you a chance not to lose any future business, and possibly even to turn this client into a return one. 

If you are able to turn around bad reviews, it can actually help your business.

Keep in mind that you may have to do more to make any amends. Perhaps the client was accidentally overcharged, or the service was not what they expected. What you do to acknowledge those grievances is left up to your own discretion. Still, whatever steps you take to remedy the situation will enhance your practice’s reputation.

What if I just disable my reviews?

If your Facebook reviews are bringing down your business and ultimately harming it, you can absolutely disable your ratings and reviews on your page. It’s not completely frowned upon; plenty of businesses do it. It may even be a good idea if you do not intend to monitor or respond to reviews.

You can still leave your page open to posts and comments from those who follow and address situations there, but it doesn’t damage your business when someone looks you up and sees your rating.

Bad reviews are never pleasant, but they don’t have to be the end of your business’s “good run.”