We all know the power of a good review. If you’ve had a bad experience with a company or product, leaving an online review can be a powerful thing. Other frustrated customers chime in with their own online reviews. Discussion ramps up and eventually the company either responds to make it right or your customer review has helped create a wave of frustration that warns others on the issue.
We have thousands of frustrated customers leaving a review on PissedConsumer every day. And for every excellent review on PissedConsumer, we see many that never seem to gain traction. So, what’s the difference between a powerful online review and one that goes nowhere? It’s not the worthiness of the complaint or the reviewer. It’s all in how to write a review that gets noticed.
5 Tips to Write a Good Online Review
So, what’s the best way to write a review that will garner the attention? It’s easier than you think. Here are the review writing tips from our team of experts here at PissedConsumer:
- Include as many details as possible
- Add images
- Review for accuracy before posting
- Consider a video interview
- Be mindful of personal details and attacks
Include as Many Details as Possible About the Issue
The first step is knowing how to write a review is simply knowing what to include. Your focus as you write a review needs to be on the issue – not your thoughts about the people involved or even your feelings about the issue. A successful PissedConsumer review is very specific about the actions involved. What happened that created a problem? Here’s an example of a review that includes specific details.
And here is a review that doesn’t include that same level of specificity:
Notice that the second review is missing key elements like dates, times, prices, or even what the actual issue was that led the consumer to make a review. In the second post, we know someone had a bad experience, but we don’t know what it was or when it happened.
When you go to write a review, you need to be very clear as the consumer was in the initial Hy-Vee post. In that review, the poster included:
- Specific details about time, date, and prices.
- A clear account of what the incident was and how it occurred.
- Images to provide evidence of the pricing issues he experienced with steak.
- As shown at the end of the review, the poster also included outside research to add relevance and information.
- And tips for other consumers about avoiding the same issue.
That brings us to our next key element in how to write a review. Include images to provide evidence and specifics. It’s hard to argue with a picture of a problem. Individuals who know how to do a review realize that when you add images to a posted online review, you’re not just telling about an issue, you’re showing it, too. Consider the Hy-Vee review posted above and the many images it included. There were pictures of the item in question. Pictures of the receipt, and even pictures of the digital screen to show the pricing discrepancy.
In the next review example, a customer’s order arrived incorrectly. She wrote only a short blurb, but she did explain the issue and included images of what she received versus what she ordered. While she could certainly add more details and more images, she can convey her meaning and show other would-be customers and the company the issue.
Review for Accuracy Before Posting
Your review is a public opinion of your experiences, so you want it to say what you mean clearly and include the right information. Be sure you have:
- Spelled the name of the store correctly.
- Added pictures to help show what you experienced.
- Matched the rating with your experience.
One frustrated customer did almost everything right in his review. This consumer included the specific details of what went wrong – an UberEats driver gave him the wrong order. A poster included an image of the food that arrived. The review clearly states the solution – a full refund. But when leaving the actual rating for the company, the reviewer clicked on five stars instead of one or two. So, it turns out to be essentially a negative review with a positive rating. This is not the way to garner a company’s attention to an issue.
Consider a Video Interview
The more details in an online review, the more effective it tends to be. Creating a video interview gives you an opportunity to include even more details about the incident, and a chance to show and explain items and images that relate to the issue at hand. If your complaint is about a complex situation or one that is ongoing, a video interview may be the best way to discuss the issue fully.
Be Mindful of Personal Details and Attacks
Finally, avoid digging too deeply into personal information – yours or anyone else’s. Avoid leaving a review that is a personal attack rather than an actual review. You may have had a bad experience with a particular customer service representative or salesperson, but your review is about the issue – not the person.
Consider how unhelpful this review is. It attacks an individual at a company but doesn’t explain what the issue was or offer any details.
On the other side of that same issue, avoid revealing too much about yourself. Online reviews feel personal, but they are about a situation – not someone else’s personal details or yours. You don’t need to leave your home address and phone number online to resolve an issue with a company. Make an account with a review site like PissedConsumer to monitor your reviews, and you can choose how to reply discretely to protect your personal information.
Why trust reviews? We know that 93 percent of consumers use reviews to determine if a local company is good or bad. Almost 95 percent of consumers read reviews before making a purchase. Every online review matters. But not every review is created equally.
Every consumer opinion matters. When you know how to do a review that gets noticed, it helps you find a solution to your issue, or at the very least, help others avoid the same problem. Make reading and writing reviews, quality reviews, a part of your online shopping patterns.
By Rebecca Garland
Business and Education Expert
Rebecca Garland, M.S. is a business and education writer. She holds secondary teaching certifications in six areas, has a degree in Business, and earned a Master’s degree in Library and Information Science. As an expert, Rebecca has been working with international clients since 2005.
*The company ratings on the PissedConsumer website are calculated using a mathematical algorithm that evaluates the information in the company’s profile. The algorithm parameters are: users’ rating, the number of resolved issues, the number of company responses and more. The PissedConsumer algorithm is also subject to change in the future.
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1. While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide any legal, medical, accounting, investment or any other professional advice as individual cases may vary and should be discussed with a corresponding expert and/or an attorney.
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