5 Ways to Respond to a Negative Homestars Review

Posted in Tips by beamlocal1wpadmin on February 6, 2013

Reputation management isn’t a new concept, it’s just something that has become even more important with the internet. Homeowners and potential clients have more information at their disposal than ever before. Websites like Homestars, HandyCanadian and others have built businesses by reviewing contractors and tradespeople. They also now have the power to impact your business through these reviews.

Have you received a negative review on a website, and want to respond. Here’s 5 proven tips for how to respond to a negative review on homestars or handycanadian.

  1. Keep a cool head. The reality is the review is more than likely going to stay on the site. Getting mad won’t get it removed. Take a deep breath.
  2. Try to understand where the homeowner is coming from. Understanding exactly what they are complaining about will help you draft a rational response. This is important because most review sites publish both the original review and the response. This is your chance to look professional, and take the high ground.
  3. Apologize. Regardless or the issue… A simple apology will help make you look like you care about customers, even cranky ones. Don’t go on the offensive, you’ll just end up looking combative. Eat some crow here and it will save you lost business in the future.
  4. Reinforce your reputation. If a customer is complaining about a flooring job, mention that you take a lot of care and pride in your flooring work.
  5. Suggest a way to make good on the complaint. A simple note about getting in touch to try and fix any concerns will help. Remember the only thing people reading these reviews will understand is what they read. Keep it short and simple.

Here’s a great template you can use to help draft your response and protect your reputation from negative reviews on sites like homestars.

Chris, I’m sorry to hear you were unhappy with the job I recently completed for you. Refinishing floors is something I really take a lot of care doing, and have been doing for a number of years. Something must have gone wrong, and I’d love to find a way to make it right. Please give me a call and we can work something out.”

You can see how a response like that would be perceived compared to something like “Chris, you never paid me to install additional subfloor, I told you the floor would end up crooked. This isn’t my fault, it’s yours for not reading your estimate”.

If you have any tips, or would like advice on how to respond to a negative review please leave a note in our comments.