Online reviews have a lot of power today. They’re found everywhere, from Amazon products to Yelp business listings and all over Google search results. Facebook has also gotten into the business reviews game, allowing visitors to your business Facebook page to rate your business and leave a review if they wish. Facebook reviews can be powerful tools for building your reputation. Let’s explore Facebook reviews and how any business owner can get started with them.

Turning Facebook Reviews On

First and foremost, understand that Facebook reviews are turned off by default. That means you do not have to allow your customers the ability to leave a review if you prefer not to. That might seem like the way to go, particularly if you’re worried about negative reviews, but it can backfire. Customer reviews are seen as social proof – they tell others that your business is on the up and up, what they might expect, and what others thought of their experience. If you have no reviews, it’s a sign that there might be something wrong, and it can turn people off from doing business with you. Step 1 is, of course, to make sure you create a Facebook Business page.

Facebook Reviews: Your Star Rating

Once you turn on reviews, your page will display a star rating, and your customers will be able to rate and review your business. The badge on your page will display the average of your customer ratings. So, if you have five customers leave reviews, and four of them rate your company at five stars, but the fifth one rates you at one star, your badge will show a rating of 4.2. As you gain reviews, the impact of each star rating will drop, but until that happens, expect every rating to carry significant weight.

Managing Your Facebook Reviews

It’s important to take an active role in managing your Facebook reviews. You cannot just sit back and see what happens. That’s a quick way to find that your reputation becomes tarnished. Even the most successful business have unhappy customers and it’s not uncommon to see more negative reviews than positive reviews on a business that isn’t paying attention to their online reviews.

Of course, it can be difficult to tell when you have new reviews that need to be addressed and you could waste a lot of time trying to keep up with them. You can easily set your notifications so that you’re alerted each time someone leaves a new review. You can find this under Settings -> Notifications -> Get a notification each time there is activity on your Page or an important Page update -> Edit your notification settings. Make sure that all notifications are set to on and decide whether you’d also like an email sent each time.

So, how do you manage your Facebook reviews? First, make sure you set aside time each and every day to respond to any review left by a customer. Yes, this can be time-consuming, particularly if you receive lots of reviews. It’s vital, though. Even if the review is positive, respond to it. This tells your customers that their thoughts are being heard and that you value their feedback. It can also help you mitigate negative reviews – some customers might even remove or change their negative rating of your business if you’re willing to work with them to change the situation. Many businesses will turn to online review management, which is a great option too.

With the right steps, the right mindset, and the dedication to reply to each review your customers leave you, it’s possible to manage your online reputation.