Six Tips on How to Respond to Self Storage Customer Reviews
As we've discussed in previous blog posts, getting customer reviews online play a big role in attracting new customers to your facility as well as aiding in SEO with online search engines like Google and Bing.
However, now that you're set up to get reviews, you'll need to make sure that you're monitoring and appropriately responding to those reviews as they come in. The goal is to stay very professional in all dealings with reviews, as this is a view into your self storage facility management to the public. Search engines like Google also give preference to reviews that also contain a reply from the business owner/management. Below are some pointers to keep in mind as you navigate the process of managing reviews for your self storage facility:
Make sure to reply to all reviews, regardless of whether they are good or bad.
Thank everyone for their review, regardless of length or quality.
Make sure you develop a system to reply to reviews within 5-7 days.
Be specific with your replies if possible. Generic responses can be seen unfavorably by customers. If you know the specific situation that's being referenced, speak to that in your response to show that it was a personal interaction for you as well.
Though negative reviews are bound to happen at some point, it's important to not accept blame. Rather, you'll want to acknowledge the issue and the customer's feelings even if they're not your fault or you don't agree. It's crucial to also offer a way for the customer to communicate with you. This is a great opportunity to show other customers or prospective customers that you care about solving customer issues and take feedback seriously.
If the customer who has left the negative review does contact you, MAKE SURE YOU RESPOND QUICKLY. It's important to listen to them and work with them to solve the issue if at all possible even if it's not necessarily one that you agree with. Also, if you offer to connect and they never reach out, you can mention that in a response. However, it's crucial to not come across in an attacking or vindictive way, but rather in a way that shows you're genuinely interested in working to resolve their problem.
REMEMBER: When all things are equal, it's much more common for a customer to post a negative review when things didn't go well rather than a positive one if their expectations were met. It's good to have a strategy in place to attempt to get customers to leave reviews. If your facility has an on-site manager, it can be good to incentivize them to ask for online reviews by setting monthly or quarterly goals. If you don't have on-site staff, it may be a good idea to send an automated email for the customer after their move-in date and ask for their feedback. One strategy to minimize negative reviews is to have two links in the email. You can ask something to the effect of "Did you have a great experience? Click here to tell us how it went" with a hyperlink that directs to google reviews. The second link could say "Is there something we could have done better? Tell us your thoughts now." with a hyperlink to the facilities email address. This can help direct self storage customers that may have had negative experiences to let you know directly rather than going to Google.