Should I Respond to My Auto Repair Shop Google Reviews?
May 22, 2019
The short answer is yes, but there’s more to it than just posting a quick response.
We talked about this in some detail during episode five of our Busy Bays Podcast – “What are your Google Reviews doing for you?”. It’s probably most helpful if we address this question by breaking reviews into three different groups – excellent reviews, bad reviews and false reviews.
Responding to excellent reviews
This is the easiest type of review to respond to and by going a step or two beyond just saying thanks, you can help your auto repair shop in a couple of different ways. A good way to do this is to mention something personal about the customer who left the review and to reference the service that you provided for them.
First and foremost, you should respond to thank them for taking the time to post a review for your shop. We all lead busy lives these days, so it’s important to show appreciation to a customer who is willing to take the time to help your auto repair shop.
Second, by including something personal about the customer, you are showing that you really care about them as a customer. This helps keep the relationship with the customer strong and also shows potential customers who will be looking at the reviews how much you care about your customers.
Finally, including something about the service you provided will help your Search Engine Optimization (SEO). This will help you show up in the Local Pack (the list of 3-4 businesses that shows up just below the map in a results page from Google) when somebody searches for that service in your area and it will also help your website search better as long as it is linked to your Google My Business profile.
Responding to bad reviews
It can be very difficult to hold your tongue when somebody blasts you in a review, especially if you feel strongly that they are wrong. But the important point to remember is that potential customers who read the review will have no way of knowing who is right and who is wrong. If you respond in a non-professional way, you are demonstrating to potential customers that you are not professional. As unfair as that may be, that’s the way it works.
Your best move is to respond very respectfully, with something along the lines of “we are sorry you feel that way about your visit to our shop.” Mention something about how “we strive to provide the best service in town to all our customers.” And follow that up with “I’d be happy to talk to you personally about your experience.”
In a case where you know that something went wrong with their service, it’s a good idea to be more apologetic. Almost all customers are forgiving and know that nobody gets it right 100% of the time. People reading the review and seeing your response will respect you more and be more likely to choose you if they see that type of response.
Responding with “our goal is 100% customer satisfaction and unfortunately we missed the mark in this instance. I’d really appreciate the opportunity to talk to you and discuss how we can make it right,” is a great way to demonstrate your care for your customers in the face of a mistake.
Responding to false reviews
Occasionally, we’ll see a review pop up for one of our customers that is either mistaken or blatantly false. An example would be if somebody writes that they visited your auto repair shop on a Saturday but you are not open on Saturdays.
In these examples it is totally appropriate to point out that they must be mistaken. Writing something like “we are sorry you had a bad experience, but you clearly didn’t go to our shop. We haven’t been open on Saturday in 20 years,” is a good way to address it. Asking them to remove the review because of the mistake is also totally appropriate. Feel free to also encourage them to stop by your shop for a much different experience.
Like with almost anything, there are some nuances to how you will want to respond to any review. But, if you use the recommendations above as a guide, and remember it will not be just the person who wrote the review that reads your response but many potential customers, you can further utilize reviews as a way to help you gain more customers.
You may also want to read: Should I Ask Customers to Post Reviews for My Auto Repair Shop?
If you’d like help getting more reviews and responding to them, please contact us at 866-665-1605 or Team_RSW@RepairShopWebsites.com.