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Timing Your Review Response

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In the instance that a customer leaves a poor review on your shop, how do you respond? For some, its important to get a response crafted right away in order to solve the issue. 

With a large online presence in their area, shop owners Erich and Lauralee Schmidt at Schmidt Auto Care of Springboro, Ohio, believe it's key to have a plan of action in place when customers leave a review—whether it be positive or negative. 

"We'll watch [reviews] like a hawk," Erich Schmidt, co-owner said. 

With a customer rating of 4.98 out of 5, the shop has had maybe three or four negative reviews in the last five years, Schmidt said. If a customer leaves a negative review, the shop has a plan in place, he says.

"We immediately address that individual as soon as we see it," Schmidt said. "We apologize for any inconveniences and then go on about discussing how we can rectify the situation—can we get your car back in immediately, can we do anything to help you—what can we do to make you a believer in us and remedy the situation that's made you unhappy."

When a negative review is posted, it puts the business in the public forum, Schmidt says. Additionally, when customers post a negative response, it's likely that he or she is looking to be heard and also receives answers back about the situation.

"When they post [a negative review], they are looking for a response because they know they are putting you out in the public," Schmidt said. "I think it sets a lot of people's minds at ease when you come back immediately and you do everything you can, and people can say, 'Hey, they're really going out of their way to help these people,' whether the situation was remedied or not, we went above and beyond what we need to do."

After you respond, customers often take notice and may change their mind about the business, Schmidt says.

"99 percent of the people want the response and, 'let's take care of it,'" Schmidt said.

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