How to respond to reviews - with examples

Your reviews are a valuable asset when it comes to marketing your business. Collecting more reviews is a good way to improve your reputation online. Reviews also help influence consumer decisions. Consumer reviews can increase a customer’s trust and promote traffic to your company’s website, and have the potential to increase a business’s profits. To get the maximum benefit out of your new reviews, respond and add some content to your review page!

Why you should respond to reviews

Responding to reviews shows your reviewers how important they are to you. When someone leaves you a great review, hype them up even more by responding and thanking them! They did you a favour by leaving a review so let them know that you appreciate it.

Bad reviews may come your way too, and they can be a let down, but don’t panic. Responding to the bad review can show that your company has a commitment to customer service, if done the right way.

How you should respond to positive reviews

Thank your reviewers

One of your clients did you a favour and left a review for your company. Don’t let their efforts go unnoticed! Let them know that you appreciate them taking the time to leave you a review by thanking them by name. Read their review, and try to reference something specific that they mentioned in their review.

Thank you so much for your review, Penelope! We are so glad to hear you are doing well and have benefitted so much from your time with Dr. Wong.

Keep it short

No one wants to read a paragraph, so keep your responses brief and impactful. Make every response personal but also short and to the point.

Thank you for the great review Michael. We appreciate that you put trust in our care and look forward to your next visit.

Reference the product.

Hi Whitney,

Thank you so much for your feedback. We are really glad that you enjoyed our [product/service]. Thanks for the review and for being a great customer!

Provide incentive on future purchases.

Hi Lucy,

We would like to thank you for taking the time to write a review of your experience with [product/service]! To show our appreciation, we’d like to offer you a 10% discount next time you make a purchase from our store. Please check your email inbox for a discount code on us!

Thanks again!

How you should respond to negative reviews

While you don’t have to respond to every positive review, you should respond to negative ones ASAP. Negative reviews can really hurt your business if there are not enough positive ones to back you up, so make sure to protect your reputation with a good response.

Apologize gracefully

Even if you don’t think the customer is right, apologize anyway. Your customer is frustrated and just wants to be heard out. Saying sorry will provide them some relief. It doesn’t have to be complicated either, just a simple and straightforward statement

I’m sorry to hear that you were not happy with your treatment. Can you email me directly at  *** so we can ensure that we make things right for you.

Recognize the issue

Sometimes customers just want to know that they have been heard. Show them that you recognize their issue by starting like this.

Thank you for providing your feedback and bringing this issue to our attention.

Provide a reason, if you need to

A lot of the time, saying your sorry is enough to rectify the bad review. However, the odd time you may need to provide an explanation as to why a situation has occurred, and clear up misunderstandings.

Make sure to provide your reason in a respectful and professional way. Take responsibility for the event that occurred. Communicate clearly why there was a misunderstanding.

Hi Martha, we are very sorry that there has been a scheduling issue on our website. We have updated our technology so that this will no longer be a problem. We want to let you know that it is now possible to make an appointment with us through our website or by phone. We hope we have a visit from you soon.

Find a solution

Once the problem is recognized, it can now be resolved. Provide the reviewer with an email or phone number they can reach you at so you can talk more with them. You may even want to compensate them if the problem has cost them time and money. Offering them 20% off their next visit, may convince a lost customer to come back again.

Dear Amy,

Thank you for your review. We are sorry to hear you had such a frustrating experience. We always aim to deliver a great customer experience and we regret that we did not meet your expectations. In order to make things right, we would like to offer you 20% off your next order if you are willing to give us another chance. Check your inbox for details.

Kind regards,
[Company name]

Take the issue offline

Let’s face it, negative reviews can be embarrassing. In order to deescalate the situation quickly, provide contact information for the customer to further discuss their response. You may also want to offer a promotion in the form of a discount code for their returning service.

Dear Jeff,

Thanks for taking the time to share your feedback of [product/service]. We are very sorry that your experience did not match your expectations. We have shared your experience with our team and we’ll aim to do better in the future. Please feel free to reach out to [company email address] with any further comments, concerns, or suggestions you wish to share. We hope we can make things right with you and that you will have a more positive experience with us in the future.

General Tips

Use a review management platform

Time is money, and it takes a lot of time to manage all of the reviews coming in from all of your different channels. Use a review management tool like to manage all of your review content, as well as efficiently ask your current customers to leave you a review through text message.

Respond right away

Reviews are usually posted immediately after an experience with your business. A timely review, deserves a timely response. Don’t let your review linger for months on end - if you do, it will look like you don’t care, even though your customer cares a lot.

On May 11, 2018, Google posted on their Twitter page that they launched an email notification system to let customers know when a business responds to their review. Since customers are now notified when you leave a response, make sure to not leave them hanging for too long. If you respond months later, they will know, and it will make them feel like you don’t care about their review.

Be a friend, not a robot

Someone took the time to write a testimonial about your company, so the least you can do is take the time to write them a human response. Don’t copy and paste the same response, even though it might be easier. Your response doesn’t have to be over the top, just let the reviewer know that you read the review and appreciate their feedback.

Share your stellar review

You’re collecting reviews like a boss, so why not share it with more people? Take your positive review and share it on your Facebook or Twitter page. You can also include a testimonial page on your website with your latest reviews.

Record Their Feedback

Businesses can learn a lot from customer reviews. Whether they are positive or negative, analyze the review and record the customer’s experience. Make sure to share the information with your team so you can all improve a customer’s experience with your business. Negative reviews highlight problems that your company can work towards fixing. Positive feedback is good because it reinforces what your company is doing right and helps show your team what to continue doing in order to maintain your customers. 

Should you always respond to negative reviews? Yes! Absolutely! Studies have found marked financial impacts based on whether or not a company is responsive to negative reviews. A negative review, if left unanswered, can cause a decrease in revenue or loss of a customer. Being unresponsive to negative reviews is a lost opportunity to reverse the damage and let your company make a comeback. Don’t let this be you! Although frightening, do not shy away from answering a negative review! Most of the time a customer just wants to be heard, so acknowledging the customer’s frustration is invaluable. A little bit of sympathy can go a long way when defusing a bad situation. Make sure to be sincere and apologize for not meeting the customer’s standards, and attempt to find a solution to their concerns rather than providing an excuse. Show the customer that your company cares about the customer and attempt to make things right by them, when possible.

Even though it may seem like a lot of work, responding to your reviews is well worth the effort as it is a key piece in managing your reputation. Be proactive and take control of your reputation today.

March 2, 2023

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