Generating online reviews is one of the best ways to spread the word about your business and attract new customers. Playing a proactive role in gaining positive traction on social media through knowing how to respond to positive reviews and 5-star ratings can take your lead generation to the next level.
Did you know that positive reviews will encourage up to 68% of consumers to use a local business?
It’s not enough to nail your review request and lead generation strategy. It’s also essential that you learn how to respond to positive and negative reviews to maximize the benefit of receiving such glowing customer feedback.
When replying to reviews, time is of the essence! As a business owner, you must promptly respond to the happy customer with a tone that conveys your brand identity and encourages them to do business with you again through a carefully crafted call-to-action.
Ready to seize the opportunity and capitalize on those positive social reviews?
Let’s get started.
Steps to Respond to Positive Reviews
What do you do when a customer pays you a compliment for your product or service in person? Of course, your natural response will be to say, “Thank you!” The same applies to online reviews.
Whether the review is on Yelp, Google My Business, or Facebook, responding personally to a happy customer’s review is a great area where you can control your online reputation.
Here’s how you can create that positive review response and multiply the perks of that good review you received:
Step 1: Respond Quickly
Think about the timing of the review you just received in relation to the customer that submitted it.
A majority of the time, reviews are left immediately after a purchase or service has been completed. Your brand and business will be fresh on your customer’s mind, and he or she may choose to give you positive feedback during this time.
You should adopt a similar practice when it comes to providing replies to reviews. Your customers’ opinions and feedback are valuable to you, and it’s time you show them that. Letting a 5-star review sit with zero engagement or replies from your side will make your customer think their review was of minor importance to you.
Aim to respond to reviews within one to two days of receiving them. The faster, the better.
You want your customer to feel appreciated and valued. If you want your business to remain top-of-mind for your customers, then you must extend the same courtesy and reply promptly.
Step 2: Use the Customer’s Name
The last thing you want to do after providing a stellar customer experience is to make your customer feel unimportant. That can sometimes even change their positive experience to a negative experience.
Shooting your customers a generic, impersonal reply is not a good way to turn that reviewer into a lasting brand advocate.
Remember: Your customer is a real person; he or she has taken the time to share a positive experience. Make sure you respond in a way that views them as individuals and not “just another customer.”
One of the simplest and most effective ways to do this is by addressing him or her by name in your response. Yes, that works!
Responding, “Mary, thank you for the positive feedback! We’re delighted to hear you enjoyed our service,” can go a long way.
Pro-tip: You can take it one step further and drop in a personal comment that tells your customer you remember their business and specific experience. Check out this Yelp review that accomplishes this below.
Don’t sugarcoat them or be too “extra” in your response, but make it a point to show your customers that you’ve read the review and not just skimmed through it.
Step 3: Thank the Customer
After constructing a personalized intro to the review response, it’s time to thank the reviewer for the kind words.
Customers are not obligated to leave a good review, but the ones that do can boost your local SEO and online reputation by way of social proof.
Thanking the customer is the first thing you should do in your review response. You want to show them that their feedback is invaluable to your business.
This can sometimes lead to additional reviews from other loyal customers or others who also want to provide positive feedback and help your local business grow. Replying to a positive review and thanking them can create this additional opportunity without your knowledge.
Here’s a sample template of how you can thank your customer. Feel free to customize it and make it more relevant for your use:
Hi [CUSTOMER NAME], thank you for taking the time to leave us such a fantastic review! We’re happy to hear that you loved doing business with us. Your satisfaction is our priority, and as affirmed by your review, we pride ourselves on our exceptional service. Thank you again for your feedback, and we look forward to seeing you again!
Step 4: Encourage Them to Share Their Experience
Responding to customer reviews is not just about making the customer happy and feel acknowledged. It’s also an opportunity for you to maximize the social proof you are receiving and build your company name and local brand.
If a customer has gone out of the way to write you a lovely review, he or she might be more likely to share this review on other platforms and review sites, as well as with friends and family. Incorporating this CTA into your response in a seamless fashion can lead to a two-fold impact of that one positive review, leading to future customers searching Google with your business name!
Depending on your goals, you could ask reviewers to share their feedback on social media platforms or simply by word-of-mouth. But remember to make this request in a way that is not too “sales-y.” Make it a natural request.
Example of text to add to your review reply
Would you mind spreading the good word about our business and sharing our services with your friends? We would love nothing more than to help other homeowners in our local community. Thank you!
Pro-tip: Don’t make your customers do all the work. If you’re asking them to share, you should be, too! Share the positive online review on your social handles, whether through a retweet on Twitter or a story update on Facebook.
Your existing followers on the platform will see the great review and may even choose to engage with it by sharing it themselves or write their own. Or, they may be reminded of your business and come back!
You can even add a positive review as a testimonial on your website, attracting more visitors and customers to your business.
There is no harm in sharing good publicity across multiple platforms. After all, isn’t that what social media is for?
Step 5: Invite Future Business
The final step is to view your reply as a lead generation opportunity.
Inviting happy customers to do more business with you in the future has the impact of:
Leading them back to your sales funnel and generating repeat sales offline
Showing potential customers that your business values customer loyalty
Muting the effect of bad reviews containing negative feedback
Of course, you don’t want to discount the gratitude you have for your customers. That should still be the primary goal.
To avoid this, make sure you craft the invitation in a casual but smart way. An excellent way to invite more business is by recommending another product or service you think this specific customer might like. By doing so, you are still keeping the focus on your customers and their satisfaction.
You can do this by including the following review response template in your reply:
We’re so glad to hear you loved the experience! Since you enjoyed [SERVICE], we recommend you schedule a follow-up with us in [TIME PERIOD]. We’re happy to help you again, whenever you need us!
Managing Reviews Made Easy
Responding to reviews, both positive and negative, is crucial. By responding personally to each positive review you receive, you take your business’s online reputation to a higher level and gain some valuable social backing.
However, if you have a large influx of reviews, it can be hard to review and manage all of them on time. This is where we can help.
Signpost’s online review management software can help optimize your review process and get the best out of every positive review you receive.