I got a bad Google review!

Do you read and listen to bad Google reviews?

I did, last night as it goes.  My Wednesdays are busy days at the best of times – I pick up my daughter from one thing, take her to another, wait an hour, then take her somewhere else.  Dad Taxi services!

The schedule has changed recently and if tied with a day of work it means I don’t really stand a chance to get a hot meal until after 8pm, which is way too late for me.

So I checked a couple of takeaways out online.  And I wound up going to the one that had the better average review on Google.  Way too easy.  I did, however, notice one review complained that the staff were rude and didn’t speak.  Not at all my experience, but I did tell them that someone had written that on Google and laughed with them about it.  (It may have got me a free drink too!)

Earlier I’m noodling about online, looking at Cornish businesses, competitors, potential prospects, just having a general update browse as you do and I came upon a Google review page for a firm that I knew had a great reputation but a low average score.

They, like me, had a bad review.

My review went like this;

“ “

In that it was completely devoid of words.

I did, of course, respond to it in a light hearted way, complaining that I only managed to get the same score as the local B&M, but also pointing out that I’d never met, nor done any business with, the reviewer.

But does it damage my company only having a 3 star Google review?

Well with me it did to the takeaway I didn’t go to.

Back to this other local firm.  They had a pretty rough review that only gave them 1 star!

The review was unlike mine, in that it actually contained words, and was well written but it very much gave only a single side to the story.

I actually got a bit of the other side too.  And I don’t think the rating is warranted on balance. We have a case of a company that tried to provide a service at an initial low price but then having to adjust that price because the work was underestimated.

I think we’ve all done that before.  I know I have, and probably still do!

Other issues mentioned point to a possible hiccup or two, and maybe an indication that communication might not have been as perfect as it could have been.

But can’t we all agree, even with the best approach, we can all let communication slip – it’s an incredible feat to be utterly on top of and perfect with your communication at all times, so again, not really an insurmountable issue.

My thoughts on communication are that if you don’t do it and become unhappy with how things are  being done for you then you should say something.  It’s only making things worse if you can’t be confident and communicate that you’re not completely happy about communication!

All in all what, on the surface, looks like a poor write up isn’t, in my humble opinion, necessarily a bad thing, there’s enough there to show up what problems there were and that’s just fine, we’re not all going to have perfect solutions every time, and what’s right for one might not be so for others.

Having said that, there is potential for damage to the casual browser, just as I did it, I chose one takeaway over another because of their average star rating, but I wouldn’t do the same with a business service provider I wanted a relationship with.  I’d do my due diligence in more detail.

Because I’m thorough like that.

But not everyone is.

So can I offer a solution?

Well, I am just a technology projects guy and not a digital marketeer.  But I’ve dealt with people and their reactions and expectations enough to know that they all have a brain.

The best suggestion I can make is to formulate a sensible response, giving facts and trust people to read and take it all in, and make a balanced decision.

Oh and the food was awesome by the way!

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THE PERSONAL BLOG OF CORNWALL-BASED COMPANY DIRECTOR // CHRIS RICKARD