As more and more people turn to their smartphone to find the products and services they want and need, businesses – of all

shapes and sizes – are having to adapt to the change. In fact, 54 percent of all smartphone users are accessing the Google

Map app to find what they are looking for locally.

With all this phone searching going on, it is not surprising that the conversation is heating up as well. A study by Google has shown that up to 55 percent of people who search on their phone start a conversation within one hour and 84 percent of these mobile searchers do so within five hours.

After a mobile search is completed, up to 55 percent of total conversions occur within the hour. With such high statistics and such a strong impact, it is puzzling why there are so many businesses on Google Local that have unanswered negative reviews.

Handling Negative Reviews

While this should be obvious, the negative reviews present on Google make it clear that many businesses are not aware that a simple response can stop these dead in their tracks. A polite and personal response can help to minimize the impact that a negative review can have.

Unfortunately, there are very few businesses that are doing this right. In fact, if you research this on Google, you will quickly find that there are thousands, if not millions, of unanswered negative reviews.

Not only can bad reviews hurt your reputation, but they can also cause penalties from Google – but that is not even the main issue here.

Did you know that up to 93 percent of all Millennials will read a review before they make a purchase? Also, only 77 percent of them will trust the reviews left on a brand website, while up to 97 percent will trust the anonymous reviews left on third-party sites.
This means that no matter the type of business you have or the niche you are in, people are reading the reviews about your business that are present on Google Maps. This is assuming that Google is even showing your business at all since it is getting much more difficult to even find the one and two-star reviewed businesses that are on Google Maps.

Why This Matters

The fact is, even the best businesses out there are going to receive a negative review once in a while. While customer service representatives can have bad days, you may experience supply issues or other bad stuff occurs – the fact is that you cannot ignore a negative review. Doing so is going to cost you money – in some cases quite a bit of money.

Brands that have low ratings are not going to be called by someone looking for the service of product they are


The Bad Behavior of Big Brands

While it is somewhat understandable that smaller businesses don’t always have time to respond to negative reviews, after all, when you have limited employees there is only so much you can do – what is the excuse for the bigger brands?

There are quite a few big brand names with quite a few bad reviews and absolutely no response to these. This simply does not make sense – you have the manpower and time, why not respond to and handle these bad reviews?

Removing a Negative Review

When a negative review is left, it is not the end of the world. In fact, with a simple response to the complaint or issue, the customer may go in and change their review completely. This can help your reputation and ensure that the negative issue is resolved.

The Bottom Line

The bottom line is that you have to respond to reviews. Never just let them sit and fester. You can take action to Remove a Bad Review from Google Local, but doing nothing is not the action you should take. Google Maps has a huge impact on what others think of your business – responding to negative feedback will show that you care and want to provide a positive customer experience.

For help managing your company’s reviews and online reputation, contact the social media experts at BlueHat Marketing.