Be it a salon or an IT company; Google reviews are an indispensable aspect of digital reputation. Google tracks the ratings and boosts the visibility of those businesses that have accumulated many high ratings.
Further, good Google reviews ratings can land your business in the Google Local Pack, a list where Google puts forth top businesses when someone searches for ‘near me’ results
Without a dilemma, Google reviews have made an impact on potential businesses trying to rank online. These days Internet users trust reviews as if they were personal recommendations.
What is the Impact of Negative Google Reviews on Your Business?
In a typical scenario, a customer has more than one choice when it comes to buying something online. So why would he/she go with a company that has a negative service experience when there are options available, right?
In a nutshell, the bad Google reviews can drive away your customers. Here are several ways in which negative Google reviews may hurt your business, and these are:-
Loss of Revenue
Taking from the above, every customer you lose because of a bad review would mean a loss of revenue. A study found over 200,000 small businesses across the US having one 1-1.5 star rating on Google revealed that their earnings were 33% less than the average business.
Loss of Online Reputation
Bad reviews can hurt your business’s online reputation in a big way. A survey discovered that approx. 50% of the potential customers will have concerns with a business having several negative reviews. In such cases, the online presence of a business gets hampered.
How to Delete a Google Review (Negative Ones) in 4 Simple Ways
Luckily, there are ways to remove bad Google reviews. Below, we walk through the four most prevalent ways to get rid of a negative Google review and strengthen your brand reputation again. So, let’s scroll down and find out:-
1) Removing Inappropriate Google Reviews
Here’s a step-by-step guide on getting rid of inappropriate Google reviews.
- First, sign in to your Google My Business using your official Gmail credentials.
- Second, you need to open the listing you want to manage and then click reviews.
- Then click More, and after that, flag an inappropriate Google review.
- The last step is to be patient.
Google may take several days to look into the flagged item and remove it if found not appropriate. Only the following content in Google Reviews falls under the category of being inappropriate:-
- Off-Topic Content.
- Offensive Content.
- Illegal Content.
- Terrorist Content.
- Conflict of Interests.
- Restricted Content.
2) Ask a Customer to Edit or Delete
Learning to respond to a negative Google review is an art and would take some time to master. However, this method helps deal with bad reviews and is highly beneficial in the long run as your business grows. Scroll down to check out the step-by-step procedure to ask a customer to edit/delete.
Whenever you notice a negative Google review, take a moment to carefully look into the customer’s point of view. You need to ask yourself these questions, what exactly are they complaining about? Is it something you already know about?
After thoroughly assessing the review, figure out whether it is fake or inappropriate. If you found the review legit, then the next step is to respond to the customer review on Google. People generally have different options, but the gist remains the same.
How to commence writing the response?
- The first step is to recognize the customer’s problem.
- Second, give a thought and determine whether you will be frustrated if the same thing happens to you.
- Finally, the response should be that you are ready to fix the problem humanely.
Once you have written the response, the final step is to wait for the customer’s responsibility. If your response is meaningful, you will hear back from them and start a dialogue on what went wrong, and from there on learn how to mend the customer relationship.
After the issue has been addressed, the next thing is to request your prospective customer to edit/remove their bad review on Google. Believe me, they won’t deny you and instead swap the negative review with a positive one.
However, if they still refuse to remove the review, you can reach out to Google to assess the situation and flag it. Google will see that as a business owner, you did your best to resolve the issue with the customer, so the odds of removal become higher.
Note: A slow response can make the customer feel ignored, which creates a bad reputation for your brand. It is advised to hire a digital marketing agency to keep track of customer feedback on all platforms. Consequently, people post bad reviews to gain your attention. Acknowledge the issue as soon as possible before it reaches other prospective customers.
If you are a business owner, you should be prepared to deal with such feedback. However, managing the situation appropriately can convert these unhappy customers into advocates of your brand. If you encounter such situations and are unsure what to do, then hiring an inbound agency is your best bet.
3) Tweet to @GoogleSmallBiz About Removing the Negative Review
A lesser-known way to remove google reviews is tweeting to @GoogleSmallBiz. However, you should not opt for this method once you have exhausted the above two means. This step has to be taken only if you have flagged the review as inappropriate several times but never heard from Google and you wrote a good response to the reviewer and still got no reply.
Then, in that case, the next possible step to get rid of Google reviews is to complain to Google over a public platform like Twitter. The Tweets to @GoogleSmallBiz are visible to Google’s Twitter followers, so Google takes appropriate actions to address the concerns.
Follow this account, so they can DM you about your problem. It would be best if you have the Screenshot of the review and your response, along with the short tweet description. This can help Google to understand the overall concern to deal with it promptly.
4) File a Legal Removal Request
Last but not least, you can always legally request the removal of the bad review. Google allows businesses to formally raise a legal removal request. However, this is possible in case of possible slander against your business, which is not legit in the United States of America.
For reporting an illegal review, you must navigate to the Content Removal Tool, and after that, you need to select your Google My Business listing. There, Google will ask you several questions related to the review.
One thing is for sure, Google takes such complaints seriously.
What You Can Do To Get Better Reviews To Rank For Local SEO?
Please understand as a business owner, you can’t afford bad reviews on any platform. Any kind of bad review is a bad review in the end.
If you’re a restaurant owner and have bad ratings on multiple restaurant review sites then that is gonna impact your online traction and sales in one way (or) another. Similarly, for other online businesses, reviews are important be it any kind of review. They impact your local SEO rankings and especially Google reviews are much important than all.
However, few well-written and appreciative reviews posted by authentic local customers can go a long way and help you find a new strand of local customers. So let’s divulge more on how local reviews can help you surge up your local rankings-
Create and optimize your Google My Business
Your business will not get the deserved attention on Google until you have optimized the Google My Business account. You simply need to spend a few minutes and complete the relevant information in the template given to you, including the company’s name, address, phone number, fax number, email address, or other contact information.
After you have filled in these details, Google will empower your customers to call you right from your online listing (or) give the customers directions to reach your business.
Not only this, if you have any new events or updates, you can easily edit the information on this page and inform your searchers regarding the same.
Work on Local SEO
If you have no specialist knowledge, you can advance your marketing efforts with some professional upgrades such as taking advantage of link building, using keywords, and other search engine optimization (SEO) strategies.
Focus on regular SEO too
When Local SEO Guide conducted its annual study, it concluded that customer reviews had a significant influence on the search engine rankings for local business search. There were approximately 200 factors that were analyzed in this study that were related to nearly 100,000 businesses.
Apart from reviews, it also explicated other local factors for organic rankings. It found that businesses that ranked well with organic searches also topped the local packs. This was evident with the websites that were not even leveraging the advanced SEO practices to rank on normal SERPs were missing out on traffic opportunities and decreased their chances of ranking for relevant keywords.
What smaller companies mostly miss out on is that Google gives a lot of credence to positive reviews. An authentic emphatic review indicates that the small business is doing well with the local customers lending it an excellent reputation.
Note: Google is employing crowdsourcing methods to analyze whether the website is a company with a powerful reputation. Google also has a specified format for the reviews, and it is hard for spammers to get through to damage the organization’s reputation.
So next time you get a negative review from the fakester, no issues. Google will spam down the hackers and unscrupulous means.
The four ways through which you can remove a Google review are as follows:-
- If the content/comment is inappropriate, then flag it.
- The second option is to address the customer’s concern and ask them to edit/remove the review.
- If both the above methods don’t work, then tweet to @GoogleSmallBiz.
- If the content is defamatory, submit a legal request to Google.
Do you have any other recommendations on how to remove a Google review? If you found any of these methods helpful, tell us by commenting below! Feel free to share it with us, our readers love to try it out.