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4 Ways Your Car Dealership Can Overcome a Negative Online Review

August 17, 2012

Car dealerships already have a bad stereotype, and when that bad stereotype is coupled with a bad online review, a car dealership may find themselves struggling to earn business.

In order to combat the negative reviews, your car dealership needs to know how to correctly handle them so that they don’t adversely affect your company. When it comes to handling a negative online review, your car dealership needs to use the following tips.

1. Read it, and then walk away.

Having a negative review can put a knot in your stomach. It can make you so upset that you want to attack them back, but doing this will make the situation worse. When you notice a negative online review, read it thoroughly and then walk away. Do not respond to the review until you have had the time to process the information and had time to clear your head.


2. Read it again, and take notes.

The benefit of negative reviews is that it provides you with insight into your business and can alert you to situations you didn’t know existed. Carefully read through the review and make notes of the areas that the review claimed as a problem. Did they complain that your salesman was pushy? Did they feel as if your online ads lied just to get them to your dealership? Take note of this information and take a look at these areas on your own. Do you have a salesman that is pushy? Were your online ads outdated so they didn’t reflect current pricing? Take the information provided and use it to make the necessary adjustments to your dealership.

3. Apologize sincerely.

Get on the review site and respond to the negative review by apologizing. Let the customer know that you’re deeply sorry for their experience, and then let them know how you plan on making it right. If possible, you may also want to provide them with a special offer or perk as a way to apologize for their inconvenience. Offer them a free oil change or give them a discount on another service your dealership provides. This will help alleviate their issue with your dealership, and it will show other users on the site that you take your reviews seriously.

4. Be responsible.

Responding to negative comments is important because it shows that you’re taking responsibility. When you allow a negative comment to sit on your site unanswered, more complaints may come in through the site. Make sure that you answer each negative comment by taking responsibility. Not only will this make the customer feel better, but it will also alleviate any other customers from adding more complaints onto the initial complaint.

Taking responsibility for mistakes also proves that you’re not trying to cover anything up, and a company that can take responsibility is appreciated much more than companies who act as if they don’t make mistakes.

If your car dealership has a negative review, make sure that you use these tips to handle the situation in a way that will help promote your business and prove that you are trying to make your customers happy.

Julie Myers is a marketing agent for a car dealership. She also writes informational articles about online reviews and car dealership review monitoring.

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