As of March 2017, there are more than 2.8 million apps on the Google Play Store and more than 2.2 million apps on the Apple App Store used by hundred thousands of users. Keeping this in mind, it wouldn’t be surprising if your app receives negative reviews or someone has a bad experience with the app. It just happens.
Of course, it is disheartening to see a stream of 1-star ratings and comments. Such reviews can also seriously affect your app position and discoverability. But don’t worry. With the help of a simple communication strategy, you can deal with all the negative reviews, along with driving greater customer loyalty and engagement.
Think of your users like a ‘plant’. In order to grow the plant, you need to nurture it, use fertilizers (whether organic or the one ridden with pesticides, it’s up to you), give enough sunlight, etc. Similarly, you need to attend to your users closely. The way you decide to respond to negative feedback or a disgruntled user is important and there’s always an opportunity to limit the damage.
Here we put together 5 tips that’ll help you deal with negative app reviews like a pro.
MAKE EMPATHY YOUR BEST FRIEND
The first thing to remember is that negative reviews aren’t the end of the world.
Sure, to see a review like ‘WORST APP EVER. DON’T DOWNLOAD’ is disappointing and can invoke serious doubts, but you can get on top of it by understanding what is it that’s bothering the user.
The ability to share or understand the feelings of your user will help you go a long way. Ask for specific issues and always use a tone that would display that even you’re affected by it.
LISTEN, BOSS. LISTEN
Even though this is mentioned ‘n’ number of times, it deserves another mention. The golden rule of effective customer service is to listen – with your both ears wide open. In communication, the most important skill has nothing to do with what you’re saying. It’s all about listening.
Hear what your users are saying. Understand the issues that they’re bringing up. Let your customers vent out their feelings and express anguish. When you truly listen and then ask questions to understand better, you might be surprised about the discoveries you make and the insights you get, which in turn can be used to update your app effectively.
IGNORE THE TROLLS
It is imperative that you reply to each and every single comment/feedback on your app. This shows that you’re concerned and ready to solve issues. But don’t waste your valuable time on feedback that is not directly related to the topic at hand. Trolls exist everywhere and you can avoid them. The attention that they are seeking out for, will necessarily draw you in an argument that might not yield any results. Continuous engagement with the trolls can be detrimental to your app and community. Draw the line where it needs to be drawn and move on.
According to StudyBlue, “9 out of 10 unhappy customers never say a word, they just never come back”
HONESTY IS ALWAYS THE BEST POLICY
If you are trying to state a clear roadmap for your users, there’s nothing like it. When you come across a comment with a specific issue, be clear in your reply. It’s ok to not have the answers at that very moment, but the fact that you’ve acknowledged their issue and working on a resolve will instill faith in the user.
Tell them when the next update will be available, what to expect and how their feedback has helped you in shaping the product. Always be realistic when it comes to timeline. Every user wants a quick solve and there’s no getting around to it. But sometimes, the issues at hand maybe more complicated than expected. Clearly stating the path will help users understand your point of view.
PRIVATE MODE ON
Though it is important to keep the comment forum open for everyone to understand what’s going on, occasionally it’s better to take the conversation private. When a user is facing very specific problems, back and forth discussion may not be much of a value in the comments section. Take conversation private, so that the user feels that he/she is being attended to with dedication. 1:1 conversation is great and goes a long way in fostering a meaningful relationship with your user.
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