You don’t have the option of pressing a delete button to eliminate negative reviews on Yelp, Google+, and Home Stars, or any other third party review sites for that matter, but you have these options:
If you think you can reason with the reviewer, respond to their concerns promptly and professionally. If you go the extra mile to right the wrong, you have a very good chance of getting the unhappy customer to reconsider his/her statement.
Dealing with a potentially angry customer can be a delicate process, and people are far more aggressive behind the computer screen. So when you do respond, it’s important to stay calm, listen, be direct and follow through with your promises.
Don’t think of yourself as helpless in the face of Home Stars or any other third-party review sites. Don’t waste a lot of time fighting with these sites or worrying about them not wanting to remove the review. Worry about controlling your own SERPs, instead, by creating positive news in your name and sharing them on highly reputable sites and social networking platforms.
A negative review may be in violation of the review site’s Content Guidelines. In that case, you can flag the review to alert the admin. Such reviews may include slurs, comments on anything that is not relevant to the scope of business, or explicit statements that their review is a second-hand experience. If the review violates the site’s guidelines, it will be deleted in a couple of days.
Your final option is to sue them and to get a court injunction to reveal the name/IP of the person writing the review. A Yelp reviewer was once found guilty of defamation after posting a scathing review on a contractor’s Yelp page. So it can work. But of course, it’s a lawsuit, i.e. very time consuming and costly with no guarantees of a win/win solution. But is that the route you would like to take? Imagine the negative publicity you and your business will get in the process. We do not advise our clients to go through this step.
iRISEmedia.com is a web design, social media marketing, reputation management, internet law, and search engine marketing (SEM) firm in Toronto, Canada. Our team helps clients increase their reach and profitability by developing and implementing customized and targeted online and social media marketing strategies. We service clients in Toronto, Ontario, the GTA and throughout Canada as well as globally.