How to respond to negative online product reviews

By |Updated Date : Jan 21, 2021 | 2910 views | Mar 09, 2016
  • How to respond to negative online product reviews

Negative product reviews on your online store ringing alarm bells in your ears? Troubled that these negative feedback will tarnish your brand’s reputation? Wondering how your prospective buyers are reacting to these negative reviews? 

Well, whether you have just ventured online or have an established brand, negative reviews are a matter of concern for your brand reputation. Since 97% of online buyers refer to product reviews before making a purchase decision, having too many negative reviews can be a matter of grave concern. Negative feedback from their peers creates a sense of uncertainty  and distrust among buyers resulting in lost sales. 

Why You Need To Address Negative Product Reviews

Do you know that a happy and satisfied customer tells about your brand to 3 of her closest friends. Any idea how many people an unhappy customer would contact? 

Well, at least 15! (source: Huffpost)

And this age of lightning fast connectivity and trends on social media, unhappy online customer review can spell disaster for your brand. 

Tense, aren’t you? Never know which disgruntled customer can go on a spree of posting negative feedback about your brand. 

We totally understand your predicament!

While you cannot compromise with the quality of your product and services, there is no need to have sleepless nights about negative product reviews once in a while!

Wonder why we say so?

Check this out!


Source: Womply, PowerofReviews, G2 and Heinz Marketing

Yes, the much dreaded negative product reviews have a silver lining, You just need to learn how to handle and manage them.

How To Handle Negative Product Reviews

While, there is no need to throw caution to the wind at the same time there isn’t a need to panic due the menace of impending negative feedback. You just need to be alert, watchful. Here on, we will guide you how to prevent negative reviews in the first place, manage the damage done tackle and finally learn how to turn these negative reviews into sales opportunities for your brand. 

Without further a do, let's check how to negotiate and convert negative online customer reviews into profitable business opportunities for your brand:

1. Prevention Is Better Than Cure

Cliched as it may sound but, nipping troubles in the bud is the best way to stop them from denting your reputation. Wonder how you can do this? Keep a vigilant eye on your social media pages, product quality checks, supply chain as well as customer service. If you keep these aspects streamlined and offer a customer-centric support policy there would be an automatic decline in customer grievances. Offer a memorable user experience on your online store and always keep on looking for new ways and means to keep your customers happy.

2. Agile Response

Be quick and agile to respond to a bad product review. Contact your customer as soon as possible and assure them that you are doing your best to address their grievance.Many times, just connecting with your customer promptly buys you enough time to handle the issue. Ideally reply to negative feedback asap or latest within 24 hours. 

3. Do Not Delete Negative Feedbacks

Nobody is perfect. Everyone commits mistakes and learns from them. So should your brand. Do not delete an undesirable comment. Take it in your stride and answer it in a way that it leaves a positive impression of your brand. Your replies should reflect that you are a customer-focussed brand and take your customer feedback very seriously.  

This approach will prove that your brand takes the accountability, is open to constructive criticism and takes steps to rectify errors.  Retaining a valid negative product review establishes you as a transparent brand and indirectly helps with your conversions.

4. Beware Of Trolls

Well all is not fair in love and war and off course business!

There are some people who might deliberately try to tarnish your image by  putting negative comments for your products. It can be your competitor spreading a rumour or your own dissatisfied employee spreading the false word. However, you need not engage with all such trolls. And if you decide to do, do it smartly so your response clearly underlines the fact that your brand is not miffed by trolling.

5. Be Polite And Professional

Negative online customer reviews can actually enrage you on many occasions. However, ask your team not to feel personal and maintain a highly professional approach. Try to explain the situation to the customer and if possible offer a small compensation(discount coupon or any other offer) for the inconvenience faced.

Perhaps, you can go a step further and send a small gift hamper and ask the customer to post their story on your social pages. This will showcase your brand as a customer-caring brand and is likely to win over more customers.

6. Understand The Customer’s Perception

A customer has a lot of hope when he/she buys a product from your online store. They could have chosen from thousands of other businesses but they chose yours. So when a customer posts a negative product review it simply means that they are utterly disappointed. Think from your customer’s viewpoint and try to help them out. 

Understand your customers’ emotions and feelings on not getting the desired service despite spending their money and waiting for the delivery. Empathize with your customers and try to do your best to plug the loopholes. This simple exercise and change of perspective will bring back lost customers to your brand.  

7. Take Responsibility And Offer Solutions

Own up for your mistake and take full responsibility for it.  When you receive a negative online customer review Say that you are sorry and you will ensure the experience is not repeated. Get to the heart of the problem and figure out what went wrong. If you are able to resolve an issue at your end itself, it will improve your operations, product quality, processes etc. 

Just in case you are not able to identify the reason for the problem, go ahead and discuss it with the customer. Try to address the issue and find a solution to the problem. Also, follow up with your customer and ascertain if the solution offered worked well or not.

8. Customer Engagement

Always be actively engaged with your customers. Keep a tab on their feedback, feelings and experiences. Send them emailers to apprise them of new features and offers. In fact, you can even ask your most happy customers to write positive comments about your brand on social media pages or third party sites. Having more positive feedback than negative product reviews automatically counters the adverse effects of bad reviews.

9. Take It As Constructive Criticism

One always learns from mistakes and there is always room for improvement. Negative feedback is actually a valuable learning tool for your brand. It helps to identify the problems and fix them before they go out of hand. Just in case you are facing too much flak, then it is time to reflect and resolve all the issues. Have a meeting with your staff and streamline your processes. 

This would help you fix the issues and plug the loopholes so that your customers do not face the problems. This approach would reduce negative product reviews and eventually earn you the goodwill of your customers.  


Customer feedback can help you build a brand that is loved by your customers. Isn’t this the sure-shot recipe for success. It definitely is. Want to use this as an effective means to build your brand reputation and boost your sales?

All you need is a support team and smart product review software. StoreHippo SaaS ecommerce platform helps you with this by offering an inbuilt customer review and rating software. You can easily publish, hide, upload in bulk or disable any unwanted reviews and comments. Also, you can easily upload comments in bulk.

Ready to explore the amazing features of StoreHippo platform and its powerful product review software? Experience it first hand by starting your 14-day free trial right away!

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