Angela’s tips for handling a negative review

Have you ever wondered what to do with a negative review? When researching a new business or product, as customers we often look to see what the one-star, or lowest-rated review says. It’s human nature to want to know what the worst experience was, and how the company responded to the problem. It allows us to form a much better overview of how the business truly operates and how satisfied customers have been with the service.

Therefore, it doesn’t matter if you’ve got 60 five stars and only 3 one stars; we guarantee (unfortunately) almost every customer that comes across you online will read those three one-star reviews!

As business owners, we must be mindful of this psychology (even though it can hurt to see)! So, here are Angela’s top tips for dealing with these not-so-great reviews in a manner that will help your business not be knocked down by it!!

1. Respond (quickly) to the complaint!

Address the problem with sensitivity and empathy. Your response should either ask the disgruntled customer to contact you directly (and provide contact information) or potentially outline the situation and how your business tried to rectify it. That will show people that you’re actively trying to amend the situation and have taken tangible action.


It’s tempting to delete the bad reviews, turn off or remove negative comments – especially on your social media pages. Doing so is actually a poor business practice, and customers may catch on and think twice about using your services. You should always respond and always allow comments and feedback to be seen.

3. Don’t get angry or defensive!

Not everyone can be reasoned with. If you stoop to their level, it will reflect poorly on your business, and potential customers likely won’t see both sides of the story. They’ll just see you, the business owner, attacking a previous customer (very uncool!) So like in most situations when you are feeling rattled… stay calm, cool and collected!

4. Report any FAKE reviews!

Yes, sometimes competitors will leave FAKE bad reviews. It’s deplorable business practices, but not everybody operates ethically. If you can, call out that you don’t have a record of them interacting with your business (this shows potential clients that this review is fake), then report the fake review quickly, and where possible, block them from being able to re-comment or rate again.

Customer reviews will not be going away, as the world becomes a digital one more and more, having a formulated plan for dealing with reviews will become a necessary facet of your business!

Click here to listen to our full podcast episode on how to best deal with a negative review (or two)!