How Contractors Should Handle Negative Customer Reviews

Bad customer reviews aren’t the end of the world – so long as you know how to respond to them.

PSA: online reviews have been shown to impact 67% of purchasing decisions. So, while good customer reviews can absolutely help your home improvement company thrive, bad reviews can be devastating for your business. And sure, you could have a sea of great reviews flooding your Facebook and Yelp pages, but one bad one can stick out like a sore thumb. For that reason, it’s very important that your company knows how to handle negative customer reviews.


Handle Bad Customer Reviews Like a Pro 

When faced with poor customer reviews, it’s easy to get wrapped up in the negative comments and come down hard on yourself. But the reality is: bad reviews happen at all businesses – not every single experience can be a 5 star one. In the instance that your company receives not-so-positive customer feedback, consider taking the following steps to minimize the damage and protect your online reputation:


handle negative customer reviews

1. Don’t Remove the Review 

Removing a negative customer review is the WORST possible approach you could take. Doing so will only make you look like you have something to hide and do anything but build trust with prospective customers and the customer who left the review.


2. Verify That Any Claims Are Valid

Sometimes – not often – people post fake reviews. So, before you respond to negative customer feedback, confirm internally that any claims being made are in fact valid. For example, if a customer complains that their project was delayed or the wrong materials were used, verify with your team what the agreed upon project start date was or what the agreed upon materials were. If a customer’s claim does prove to be false, respond and politely dispute the review.  


3. Respond Quickly, and Publicly 

Always, always, always acknowledge a negative customer review in a timely manner. The longer you wait, the more people you risk visiting your website, seeing unaddressed bad reviews, and assuming you don’t care about the issue. That being said, it’s also important that you respond publicly, as that will show others that you value customer satisfaction.


4. Include the Right Information in Your Response

When you actually reply to a customer’s negative review, the following tips can help increase your chances of turning an upset customer into a happy one:

        • Empathize and Apologize, Sincerely 

Even if you don’t agree with why the customer is upset, be sure to convey that you understand and are sorry for the role you played in their negative experience.

        • Don’t Go the Anonymous Route 

In your response, introduce yourself to the customer so that they don’t feel like they’re speaking to a computer screen. Including your name, your role in the business, and an email or cell number can help add authenticity to your response and make it feel more personal.

        • Ask to Take the Conversation Offline

End your response by asking the customer to reach out to you directly so that you can handle the situation. Doing this will prevent a long back and forth conversation on a review site, and it will show that you’re not just apologizing to apologize – you want to truly repair the situation.



How you handle negative customer reviews makes all the difference when it comes to customer satisfaction. However, while bad reviews are just a fact of business, you can reduce the number of poor reviews you receive by delivering a red-carpet customer experience in the first place. With MarketSharp, an industry-specific CRM software, home improvement pros can leverage all sorts of features – from appointment scheduling and project management tools to automated communications to integrations with payment processors – that will ultimately help maximize customer satisfaction.

To learn more about how MarketSharp can help keep your customers happy, schedule a demo with one of our team members today!