How to handle a bad online review

It doesn’t matter how professional you are; it’s impossible to please everyone. If you get a negative review, here’s how to handle it.

Breathe
Before you “set that person straight,” take a few minutes to collect your thoughts and get over the initial anger.

Respond to everyone
You could reply only to some bad reviewers—maybe those you can resolve or that aren’t written in all caps with exclamation points. But would you rather be seen as an agent who ignores criticism or always tries to help people? By responding to every review, you’re showing that you work to satisfy clients—and you may turn the reviewer into a fan.

Keep it professional
Some reviewers cross the line with personal attacks, but you cannot reply in kind. Always take the high road, and you’ll look like a true professional when paired with an immature criticism.

Find the problem
Some people use the review to vent frustration without specifics. Others cite exactly what they disliked. Focus on those specifics in your response.

Check the facts
If the reviewer does mention specifics, respond with objective information about the transaction.

Extend an invitation to talk further—offline
You want people seeing the negative review to recognize that you care. However, you don’t want to publicly debate anyone.

Know when to disengage
If instead of contacting you privately, the reviewer adds a combative public response, it may be time to move on.

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About Texas Association of REALTORS®

The voice for Texas real estate
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