Most local businesses operating in 2019 know the influence that online reviews can have in maintaining a successful bottom line, and we want to make sure you know the latest to stay on top of your reviews. From auto dealerships to hairdressers, restaurants, and more, gaining positive feedback from customers has never been more important. A recent study showed that 88% of customers trust an online review just as much as a personal recommendation. On Facebook, 1 in 3 people use the platform to look up reviews of a local business.
Here at LOCALiQ AUTOMOTIVE we’re committed to helping you achieve (and beat!) your business goals – which means keeping you informed when changes happen in the online landscape. Facebook recently updated the way they handle reviews, and we’re going to walk you through the changes and what they mean for you and your dealership online presence.
Auto Buyers rely on FB for Information
A recent survey (LOCALiQ AUOTOMOTIVE Survey, 2018) conducted with auto buyers showed that shoppers looking for their next automobile rely on Facebook for information throughout the research and consideration stages of the auto consumer journey. This means that the latest changes to reviews on Facebook are even more important for auto dealers to understand, in order to maintain a positive dealership online presence.
Facebook Reviews are now Recommendations
Effective immediately, Facebook is no longer collecting reviews on local businesses from its users. Instead, they are asking users whether they would recommend a business – a simple “yes/no” choice, followed by the possibility of adding extra endorsements and comments. For example, if your dealership offers great service, and multiple users recommend you for this aspect it will appear as an additional ‘bonus’ alongside your recommendation, boosting your reputation online.
The new Facebook review system also makes it easier for business owners to flag spammy or irrelevant comments, so your rating should be less affected by rogue comments, which will be dealt with more quickly than before.
Recommendations will appear alongside your other Facebook page info – opening times, location, etc. As always, it’s important to make sure that you keep this key local listing information up to date.
The volume of Facebook reviews might drop
With users now only being able to give a “Yes/No” answer, you may find that the volume of Facebook reviews drops slightly. Those customers who would once have left a 2 or 3 star review may not feel strongly enough to leave a resounding “yes!” or could even be tempted into a “No!” With less space for nuance, the playing field may shift slightly.
That’s no reason to panic – you can think of this change as a reminder to make sure you’re nurturing your prospective buyers. Remember, it’s also a good idea to ask your happiest new auto owners to leave you a positive recommendation – customers are often more than happy to support local businesses. And people who just bought a car are usually on cloud nine!
Additionally, customers tend to have greater trust for a business that has both positive and negative feedback, as it comes across as more authentic. Places with a 100% positive score can seem too good to be true!
How to respond to negative feedback
What should you do when you receive a “No” recommendation, followed by negative comments? First of all, take a deep breath and remember not to take the feedback personally. Next, follow the steps below to resolve the situation amicably.
Be Prompt. Leaving a negative comment unattended gives the impression that you’re not interested. Your customers want to feel heard, so make sure you respond while the feedback is still fresh.
Show You Care. Empathize with your customer and try to understand where they are coming from.
Move the Conversation. Once you’ve shown you’re listening, ask to move the conversation to a more private space if there’s a specific problem to resolve. That could be via direct message, phone or email.
Take Action. Let your customer know how you will try to resolve the incident and keep them updated as you go.
Did You Know?
According to a Harris interactive survey: 33% of customers who posted negative feedback and received a response turned around and posted a positive review of the brand and 34% deleted the original negative review.
Take the pain out of managing reviews
We know how hard it can be to keep track of your online reputation across Facebook, Google, Yelp, and more. That’s why we offer dedicated online review tracking across all the major platforms, including flagging spam reviews and alerting you to critical feedback so you can respond quickly and minimize the impact of any negative comments.