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Yelp Support Center

What should I do if I get a negative review of my business?

Taking a step back, reviews are feedback. Whether positive, critical, or somewhere in the middle, that feedback can help you learn more about your customers and make changes to your service. Every business has areas to improve, and no business can be perfect 100% of the time. What we’re trying to say is, the occasional critical review is okay. Pay attention to any bigger themes you’re seeing in those reviews to identify opportunities to improve. 

Also, having a mix of both positive and critical reviews is a good thing. It shows a wide range of experiences and helps consumers trust what they’re seeing. Research suggests that people trust reviews and star ratings more when they see a mix of critical and positive reviews, and Yelp’s own data shows that businesses with some critical reviews receive more page views than businesses with no critical reviews. 

While receiving a critical review on Yelp can sting, you might be able to mend a situation and/or change a consumer's perspective, by following these three steps:  
  1. Take a minute: Business owners who pause for a moment rather than responding immediately tell us their responses are less heated and more resolution based. Don't wait too long, though.
  2. Take the high road: Your business is your pride and joy, but a defensive or harsh tone might turn people off. If you’re worried about how your response sounds, let a trusted co-worker or friend read through it before posting.
  3. Take comfort: In the end, you can’t please 100% of your customers 100% of the time. Attempt to mend any valid issues presented, trust that you did everything you could, and continue providing the best possible service to potential customers.
For more details on responding to reviews, check out our blog post Dos and DON'Ts of Responding to Reviews on Yelp.