Answer Neg Reviews?

Almost Eden

Farm Hand
Messages
26
Do you guys read your online reviews? Do you ever respond to the negative reviews? I just had a customer leave me a scathing review because the shop was closed due to the coronavirus pandemic at a time when she needed flowers for her mother's memorial service. I want to be sensitive because I understand that grief makes us react differently than we usually would and I'm sure she's hurting over her loss, but her review makes it sound like the business was simply unresponsive. However, the automated answering system explained why the shop was closed, and she chose not to leave a message. She also didn't reach out through email or social media asking for help. The business was unresponsive because there was nothing to respond to. Although my business could be considered essential, I have no obligation to stay open. I felt like it was the right thing to do - closing up shop, paying employees to stay home, and maintaining my recurring commercial contracts alone. My heart goes out to her, but the review she left is really terrible. I'm torn between responding in order to show her compassion and to do damage control for other potential customers and ignoring it altogether since she makes it clear the shop closed due to the pandemic which most will see as reasonable.

If this wasn't about the business, I'd reach out to the reviewer privately because I have a great deal of empathy for her. It's awful to lose someone you love. Due to social distancing I bet she's not getting a lot of support.
 

RichZ

Farm Hand
Messages
73
WOW!!! You were given a bad review because you were closed due to the pandemic???? That's ridiculous!!! The post you just put in would be an excellent response. Just pretty much say what you just did, that you understand that the person was grieving, but they gave you no chance to help them. I think if you explain it as you just did, people will realize what happened.
 

Chickadee

Farm Hand
Messages
61
I've always heard that you shouldn't ignore negative reviews. Write her back, and thank her for her feedback and apologize that being closed was an inconvenience for her (even though you didn't do anything wrong). Offer your condolences to her for her loss. You could even offer her a discount or something on her next order and offer to discuss the situation more privately if she'd like.
 

Minty

Farm Hand
Messages
37
I am sorry to hear that. There are indeed a lot of people out there being not considerate at all and only think of themselves. I hope this single negative review won’t influence that much. It’s always hard to please everyone, even if you have already done your best...
 

OhSusanna

Farm Hand
Messages
33
I answer negative reviews when I get them. I admit it when I've made a mistake and I try to remedy it. You have nothing to apologize for though. You were trying to take care of your employees and yourself and family by closing up. Couldn't she have gotten flowers elsewhere? Some people are just looking for freebies and discounts, but I doubt that's what this was about. I think she's hurting, and she took it out on you. She's letting her grief do the talking. Would the funeral home have even let you in? I know around here, funerals were cut down to ten people only. I know you could drop the flowers off, but can you imagine trying to work that in with everyone else needing to be there too? No way! The funeral director, the preacher, the daughter, any siblings, a possible spouse - 10 fills up quickly. If I was in her shoes, why I'd grab some wild flowers off the interstate or in the park if I had too. Or I'd craft some out of cloth or paper. You make do.

Check her reviews. Does she leave them often? Did anyone cover her mother's funeral? Did she review that establishment?
 

Almost Eden

Farm Hand
Messages
26
WOW!!! You were given a bad review because you were closed due to the pandemic???? That's ridiculous!!! .
The problem is that she saw me at the hospital taking care of its interiorscaping, so in her mind, the whole social distancing thing was a lie. What she failed to notice was the time of day, which was the evening when people weren't in the lobby. I wore gloves and a face mask. I took care of those contracts alone, so my employees weren't being exposed. I'm not worried about catching the coronavirus myself, but it would kill me to have a worker catch it due to the job. I wish the reviewer had approached me when she saw me there since I could've helped her. I think I'll answer the review and keep it short and simple.

@OhSusanna, She didn't review the other business.
 

Sam Carter

Farm Hand
Messages
48
If I had reviews to read, yes, I would take the negative into consideration. You may be doing something wrong and not even know it until some random stranger point it out.
 

Birdie

Farm Hand
Messages
40
The problem is that she saw me at the hospital taking care of its interiorscaping, so in her mind, the whole social distancing thing was a lie. What she failed to notice was the time of day, which was the evening when people weren't in the lobby. I wore gloves and a face mask. I took care of those contracts alone, so my employees weren't being exposed.
Doing something alone is considered social distancing. You weren't told to isolate yourself in your home as someone who had been exposed to the virus or as someone who tested positive to the virus. You did nothing wrong. This woman is upset at the world because she lost her mother. A lot of times those parental relationships bring a certain amount of guilt with them but it has nothing to do with you. I would acknowledge her loss then respond factually to the rest. I wouldn't be surprised if she deleted the review once she's had time to think about it.

@Sam Carter, same here and I've learned more from the negative reviews than I have from those that are positive.
 
 
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