In today’s world, reviews determine if a user will buy a product or ignore it.
The situation is no different when you are out in the market to purchase or download an app.
For the year ending December 2019, Statista reports that there are approximately 2.5 million apps on the Google Play Store, whereas the Apple App Store houses 1.9 million of them.
Reviews tend to be a mixed bag. Some of them will be good, and others will be the very opposite. We must handle them carefully if we want to excel at ASO or App Store Optimization, be it Google’s or Apple’s.
This brings us to the elephant in the room: how to reply to negative reviews?
In this article, we look at the best ways of dealing with customer reviews to ensure your ASO ratings improve. We have also added insight on how to reply to negative reviews.
Note: ASO can also refer to Amazon Store Optimization, which I wrote about in the past.
Why is it important to reply to reviews?
Reviews are an essential medium to understand consumer sentiment.
Most of the time, there is no direct contact between the manufacturer and the end-user. Reviews are the only source that informs the maker of the user’s sentiments.
Google’s I/O report states that developers reply to more than 100,000 reviews daily, and it results in a hike in their app rating by 0.7 stars on average.
How Often to Respond to Customer Reviews?
There are several stages in the life of your app, which may define the strategy that you employ for your Google App Store Optimization. In the initial days, it would be feasible for you to reply to every review and that too promptly, be it positive or negative.
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It will help you to understand the consumer whom your product is catering to and how you can improve your offerings. During initial days of app launch, it makes sense to run sponsored reviews campaign with platforms like AppReviews Ninja to boost Android app reviews.
Once your app has got ample traction, timely replying isn’t mandatory as before. What is more important is you read the reviews carefully and help them when they are in a fix.
How to reply to negative reviews to achieve perfect App Store Optimization?
An essential part of Apple or Google App Store optimization is dealing with the negative reviews. Responding to unfavorable app reviews has become an Achilles’ heel for the developers.
Many of them failed to tackle the issue, which led to their downfall and complete removal from the market.
Here is how you can master the art of how to reply to negative reviews efficiently and win the Google App Store optimization battle:
If there is a genuine problem, don’t shy away from accepting it
If there is a problem, you should not be shy about admitting it. The primary thing to understand is how to receive it constructively:
- Begin by communicating it to all the users
- There will always be some who will act hyper. Make sure you have them covered.
- The conversation must be such that the users feel that you are genuinely concerned and doing something to improve the situation.
Do not take any of it personally on yourself
Emotions can pop-up from nowhere, especially when you are in a difficult situation. Knowing how to reply to negative reviews can make or break the bank.
It will help if you don’t let them affect you personally. So instead of taking it all at heart, show compassion, and treat all the bad reviews with equal respect.
Prepare a recuperation plan and start working on it
Once you have seen a plethora of unwanted reviews, you know that there is a problem. The next step is to prepare a recuperation plan to get rid of all the nasty remarks.
Here is how you should plan your resurgence:
- Get yourself acquainted with the adverse remarks.
- Delve deep to understand the issues faced.
- After that, figure out if the issue is technical or general.
- If the issue is general, escalate it to the customer grievance department.
- If otherwise, ask your technical support team to handle it.
Turn negative reviews into user feedback.
One of the common traits of reviews is that people seldom forget after posting negative reviews. They won’t consider changing it even after resolving the issue. Even though the main problem remains replying to negative reviews, you must also know how to neutralize it in front of your viewers to achieve efficient Google App Store Optimization.
Here are the steps you can follow to achieve it:
- Ensure that you have a ranking mechanism in the app for the app store.
- After that, figure out the message that you would communicate while pursuing users to give a review.
- Place a mechanism that redirects the negative reviews to an internal feedback page.
- You must communicate it to the reviewer so that he is not confused about what just happened.
In this manner, you can convert the negative reviews into user feedback conveniently.
If it’s too complicated, take it offline and chat with the user direcly via email or a chatbox
Reviews and admin feedback is not a place where you would like to indulge in long conversations. If you feel that there is a complicated issue or the user is adamant to prove his point, it is better if you take it to a personal chatbox.
- Begin by reading all the reviews carefully.
- Once you complete the task, make a public comment addressing the common issues.
- If the issue persists, comment on the reviews individually to help them out.
- In the comment, make sure to add an email address or any other link which will help the users to reach you when in need.
As per the Apptentive report, 73 percent of people who took part in the survey claim to read at least one review before they download a free app. The number goes all the way up to 80 per cent when it is a paid app. It proves the importance of improving Google App Store Optimization if you want to reach more users. Hence, if you know how to reply to negative reviews, reaching more users becomes an easy task.
It is imperative to understand that it is not an overnight process and runs its course before yielding significant results.