The one thing you’re doing wrong with your customer reviews

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Collecting reviews is so important as it creates ‘social proof’ – this is critical to growing our business online, being found and helping us reach our digital marketing goals, because it shows our would-be customer what other people think about us. So, assuming that you are collecting reviews, there’s one thing that I see loads of companies doing, and it’s a huge missed opportunity.

Getting reviews can be a hard enough task, but it’s the start of a beautiful thing – when someone takes the time to write feedback, this is your opportunity to engage with them – cultivating this relationship can be exceptionally rewarding.

So why don’t businesses respond to reviews?

This irks me. If I make the effort to provide feedback, but you ignore me, what message are you sending me?

What if I don’t see the feedback?

I’m really just talking about channels that you have available. If a customer finds a review site at then no one’s expecting you to be able spot that.

But if you’re just not ‘seeing’ the feedback, then it may indicate that you’re just not paying enough attention to your audience/brand. If you’re seeing it, but choosing not to respond, is it not just rude?

Imagine you’re in a restaurant, you’ve enjoyed your meal, had a lovely time. A staff member opens the door for you as you leave and you say “Thank you very much, it was great – have a great night”.

They just look away. Nothing.

How would you feel? Appreciated? Would it leave you with a lasting impression – a good one, or could it perhaps take the shine off of that otherwise positive experience?

Why do ‘we’ do it with online reviews then?

Best practise for handling reviews

Get involved – be a part of the conversation. I’m looking to provide my feedback – whether praise or constructive criticism – so I’m looking to at the very least be acknowledged. By ignoring the reviewer, you’re devaluing their contribution. This may, ultimately, put me off ‘bothering’ to provide positve feedback if I saw that you didn’t bother responding to them.

What can you do about negative reviews?

Generally speaking, people will want to make something better – so helping them to feel heard, listened to and taking their feedback on board is the key here. If the review is incorrect (fake?), then you can often report that to the platform for review and/or removal.

Thank you for taking the time to provide your feedback. It’s great to hear what you enjoyed, and where we could be even better – we’re going to take this forward and look at how to implement it.

But, just as with positive feedback, think about the experience of the individual who takes the time to let you know that their experience wasn’t perfect and to suggest a way it could have been – that’s gold right there; solid gold. Take that, learn from it and grow.

If you have any tips on how you deal with good or bad reviews, drop them in the comments below, I’d love to see them!

If you’d like, head to if you have had a positive experience and would like to share it with others who are looking for support with their digital skills and marketing.