How To Respond To A Negative Review On Amazon: Flipping the script on Amazon negative reviews
How to respond to a negative review on Amazon is a skill that every Amazon seller needs to have. Why you ask? Because regardless of how much you try to provide the best product and service to your customers, there will be one, or two, that will give you a bad review. Believe me, it’s not a question of “if”, but “when”. And when that happens, you need to know what to say, how to say it, and how to rectify the situation.
How to respond to a negative review on Amazon – and flip it to your favor – starts with you taking a deep breath, and keeping yourself calm. It’s not the end of things. And as the title above suggests, you can eventually use it to your advantage.
Let’s start with;
The Basics: Two ways you can respond to an aggrieved customer
There are a couple of methods that you can use to respond to a negative review.
- Send the customer an email
- Comment on the negative review
Messaging is best suited if the negative review involves sensitive information (be it yours or that of your customer) that should be kept private between the two of you. Though messaging a customer on Amazon may elicit a more personal touch, it doesn’t really work wonders with how the Amazon users at large sees you at large. So unless sensitive information is involved, don’t use this method.
Commenting on a negative review on the other hand can be deemed by the one who left it as confrontational. And why not, your comment is geared to contradict his/her statement (more on this later in the article)
But then again, it can also work as a public relations tool. It can show Amazon users at large that you do care about customer satisfaction, that you are open to any suggestions, or will try to find ways to address and resolve the problem.
Amazon calls this type of approach as Official Comments, and is defined by Amazon as;
“Customers can post comments on any customer review on Amazon to ask and answer questions or to share their own views about products. A person officially associated with a product, such as the manufacturer, has the additional ability to add a highlighted comment that is always displayed immediately next to the review. Official comments from creators of the product can add to the review by answering customer queries or clarifying information about the product. Comments are highlighted only if we can verify that it comes from an authenticated creator of the product or from an official Amazon representative. Once authenticated, posters are given badges that show their relationship with the product.“
NOTE: Official Comments should come from an official representative of the company involved. And that said action only applies to manufacturers/private labels of a brand within Amazon. 3rd party resellers/sellers are not allowed this option.
Now we go to the meat of things of how to respond to a negative review on Amazon….
The Approach: How to respond to a negative review
Yes, regardless if you feel that you have done nothing wrong, you should apologize. And yes, that’s the most effective way on how to respond to a negative review on Amazon. The point here is that you have aggrieved someone. And in business, the customer is always right, even if he/she is wrong.
Start your reply with something like, “I’m sorry that you had issues with our product (name of customer)”. This should set the tone that you are legitimizing his/her concern, regardless if it’s baseless or not.
You then move on to address the problem. Was the negative Amazon review about a defective product, trouble with operating it, is he/she asking for a refund etc? Again, treat each of these complains as initially “valid”.
Empathize And Offer A Solution
If the problem is about operating the product, then go send instructions. If it’s about a faulty model, then offer a replacement or a refund. If it’s an issue about inaccurate listing information, then resolve the issue immediately (if the customer is proven to be correct about it) and offer any compensation that is available to you.
You can say something like (if it is established that the fault is with you)
“Regarding your issue about (point out issue), this is the best solution that we can offer to you (provide solution). We hope that is enough to compensate for any inconvenience it may have caused you (name of customer).”
Now if it is established that customer is at fault, don’t be a douche and point it out right in his/her face. This will only lead to others seeing you as a self righteous prick, which will probably affect your sales in the long run. Rather, be sensitive in pointing out his/her error and send a message that points this out in a civil and professional fashion.
Here’s the rundown of things on how to respond to a negative review on Amazon:
Provide adequate information: Write comments that can help answer the issue. You can also use it as a way to provide potential customers with further information.
Be specific with your replies: Write comments that are tailored fit to answer and resolve the issue. Comments should be easily understood and straightforward to avoid escalating the issue.
Always act in a professional manner: Customers, regardless if they are wrong, are entitled to their opinions. Use your Official Comment option to maintain, and even enhance your relationship with them.
Amazon Negative Reviews: Why you shouldn’t worry too much about it
If you noticed, my approach (better yet, all of us at Sellerlift) on how to respond to a negative review on Amazon is to use real world public relation tactics to turn a bad review into a favorable one.
Some of you might be saying, “So long as the review is on there, wouldn’t it remain a stain on my reputation as a seller”. True, I’m not going to deny that. But then again, so is your response.
Amazon buyers, or people in general at that, can be very wary when something is squeaky clean. Answer me this, have you ever seen an Amazon profile without any negative reviews? Nope, I don’t think so. And why is that? It basically boils down to the fact that you can never please everyone.
A few negative review, if dealt with accordingly, can serve as a badge of honor for your account. It beacon that says, here’s a seller that is willing to address and resolve issues that his/her customers might encounter. In short, he/she is a good guy.
I dunno about you, but if you can effectively relay that image to customers, no amount of Amazon SEO comes close to it.
Business is all about perception. If consumers perceives you as a trustworthy seller, you will get conversions because of trust. And this idea of trust in the retail industry, be it real world or online, is the rock that every big business builds its brand on.
So unless you are indeed a shady seller, one that has no intention of providing quality products and service to consumers, then having one or two negative reviews is nothing to worry about.
I know I’ve been babbling again with business psychology and all, but I really do believe that having the right mindset is needed for any business to flourish. But if you are here to just read up on key points, then here’s how you are flipping the script on negative Amazon reviews with the use of effective responses.
- You’re using negative Amazon review as a public relations tool, telling buyers that you are a seller that is willing to address and resolve whatever issue your customers may have
- You are showing to the rest of the Amazon ecosystem that you are a professional seller, and more importantly, person
- Effectively addressing negative reviews, you instill, and propagate,the idea of trust between your brand and consumers
- Having one or two negative reviews proves that people are buying your product. And unless said negative Amazon reviews outnumber positive ones, it means that people are satisfied with your products
So, do you agree with everything I said on how to respond to negative a review on Amazon? Do you have questions or have anything to add this article? Or maybe, you don’t agree with everything I said and want to debunk my approach.
Regardless, I want to hear what you think, so do leave a line or two below on the comment section.
As always, have a great day, and see you next time.
Johann is a Psychology major turned online writer and branding/marketing consultant since 2008. He now happily calls SellerLift home, and is the person behind their blog content.
In his spare time, and to remind himself that there is more to life than his computer monitor, he throws himself down steep country roads on his longboard, takes black and white photos, and produces lounge music for an independent music label.