Negative reviews on Google Maps may cause customers to run away from your business. Even if they find your offer interesting, they won’t make a purchase from you. Do you know the principle of social proof? When people don’t know what decision to make, they tend to find out the reviews of others. Then they make the same choice as the majority of people.
A satisfied customer will draw more customers to you. One negative comment can make a potential buyer of your goods hesitate and start looking for alternatives. Therefore, it is in your best interest to remove reviews that damage your image whenever possible. Otherwise, you’re giving your competitors a big boost, which is unlikely to be your goal.
As the owner of a Google My Business profile, you are a customer of the American giant. This means that you have every right to demand high quality service. Google has to meet your expectations and guarantee you a safe use of its platform. Therefore, if a person posting a review violates the regulations, you are on the winning side.
Google Maps regulations clearly define what kind of content is prohibited on the service. It’s all about spam and fake reviews. As you can only post one review from one Google account, you can easily deal with unfair practices of your competitors. If you can prove that someone has rated you from several different accounts, all of that person’s ratings will be deleted. Likewise, you can deal with people who weren’t your customers or have false information in their comments.
Google also condemns reviews that are offensive, discriminatory, dangerous or even related to terrorism and comments with explicit sexual overtones. You can’t rate your own business on Google Maps either. Interestingly, this does not only apply to business owners. Also current and former employees cannot do so without breaking Google’s rules. On the one hand, this presents some difficulties. However, this rule effectively protects you from toxic people that your business no longer works with.
Reporting reviews is very simple. Simply click on the three dot symbol next to the offending comment and select the appropriate option. If the report has been successfully verified, the review should disappear within 4 days. After that time, you can contact Google support. Describe the problem in detail. Indicate which rule has been violated. This way you will show that you are sending the support ticket for a good reason.
Sometimes you might get a negative response to your form. You can appeal. If it is denied again, you will only have to go to court. But even this will not remove reviews that are true and comply with Google’s terms of service. You also won’t get rid of reviews with a small number of stars that don’t contain content. What to do in such a case?
You failed to remove a negative review. That’s okay. It happens. What matters in this case is your response. Potential customers pay attention to more than just the content of comments. They want to know what you will do if they have comments on an order. By insulting the person making the negative comment, you will deprive yourself of a chance to improve your image. Instead, you can approach the problem professionally.
Treat the response like a free advertising space. Understand why your customer is unhappy. Then reach out to him. Apologize for the inconvenience. Do it even if your company did an exemplary job. This is what separates the professionals from the amateurs. Offer a solution or compensation. Invite the buyer to contact your customer service department and wait for a message.
Remember: Respond to unwanted feedback in the comments. Do not use private messages for this purpose. Your answer should be seen not only by one customer, but also other people interested in your offer.