Are Yelp Reviews Important?
Before a potential customer walks into your auto repair shop, wouldn’t you like for them to feel like they can trust your business – even if it’s their first visit to your shop? This is especially important in the auto care industry, where consumers need to trust a technician to accurately diagnose their problem, recommend the best repair options, complete the work in a timely and professional manner, and charge them a fair and honest price once the work is complete. That’s a lot to ask of somebody who hasn’t worked with your shop before – after all, trust is earned over the course of any relationship.
Love them or hate them, websites that allow customers to share ratings and reviews – like reviews on Yelp or Google My Business – can help your auto repair shop start to build trust much earlier in the relationship, even before they call you to schedule an appointment or walk into your shop for the first time. For this reason, it’s more important than ever for your shop to request reviews from your customers – the happier the better – and also to monitor what customers are saying about their experience with your shop over time.
For all the good online reviews can do to help you establish or reinforce trust with your customers, there is also a downside – which no doubt many of you reading this post have experienced from time to time. No business has 100% customer satisfaction. With so many variables in play, somebody is going to be dissatisfied with their experience at your shop at some point – and in the heat of the moment, they’re going to whip out their smartphone and write about their side of the story for all the world to see.
In a factsheet released by Yelp on September 30, 2016, the company broke down the distribution of ratings (5 stars – 1 star) for all Yelp reviews:
Image Source: www.Yelp.com
As you can see from the chart above, your shop is not the only business that has received a bad review. In fact, 15% of all reviews on Yelp are “1 Star” reviews. If you don’t have any “1 Star” reviews, you are probably serving your customers even better than you think you are. When a bad review happens, you need to know about it and respond in a professional manner – this is one of the most powerful ways you can prove to current and potential customers they can trust you, regardless of whether or not you can win over the unhappy customer.
What Should You Do If You Get a Bad Review On Yelp?
CarCareCONNECT recently published an updated version of our free guide, “Yelp Help: Creating a Positive Online Reputation.” In this guide, CarCareCONNECT recommends a three-step process for consistently responding to the dreaded negative Yelp review. The guide also includes some bonus tips for dealing with Yelp reviews which may be helpful for managing your Yelp or other online reviews.
The best advice for managing negative reviews on Yelp? Get your most satisfied customers to post a review. Sometimes all you have to do is ask. It’s more likely an unhappy customer will post a negative review, but when you consistently get your happy customers to do this as well, you present a more accurate picture for your customers and minimize the impact negative reviews might have.
Follow this advice and the tips provided in CarCareCONNECT’s free Yelp guide to help your shop turn online reviews into a top source of new customers for your shop. If for some reason you don’t have any happy customers willing to post a positive review, you may have bigger issues to address in your shop. Use feedback from your online reviews to train and develop your team – and remember, the better you are at responding to feedback on Yelp, the easier it will be for you to establish trust with prospective customers early on in your relationship.