Every business owner can relate to the same sinking feeling when it comes to online review sites (Yelp being one example):
“Wait, is that ...(ugh) less than 4 stars...a negative review?”
Good Day — Sarcastic
“Well, today I received a negative Yelp review. Turns out that some people — who you have never seen before — get upset when you close five minutes early to attend your son’s championship game.”
OK Day — Bribery
“I keep a pretty close eye on my reviews, and whenever I see my number fall below four stars I just write out a few extra Adderall or Dexedrine scripts and it’s back up in no time.”
(h/t The Onion)
Bad day — Anger
“What. The. FUDGE. Who is this person?!? Aaargh!!!”
So, any way you cut it, frustration. But what’s at the root of this frustration?
What’s frustrating is that
can submit reviews that potential customers may read, but
(customers nor employees) has any idea who these reviewers actually are or how much stock to put into their opinions. Feedback might be from the best customers, who’ve recently spent thousands of dollars, but feedback probably comes from the worst, who’ve only visited once and based their “review” off of a trivial detail.
That said — feedback and review site reputation matter! For example, one study
a half-star improvement makes restaurants 19% more likely to sell out (and that’s just a half-star improvement!).
So, what’s a multi-location business to do? To tackle the review site conundrum, businesses have tied customer feedback to an individual person and ensure review sites reflect real opinions. The benefits are enormous:
Take back data control
Remember, the data on review sites belongs to review sites — that’s why it’s so hard to engage directly with customers. If businesses can collect their own review data — ahead of review sites — they get more control over what’s being written.
Engage your own customers
Review site “reviewers” are customers — first and foremost — of the review site! If a business engages its own customers directly, feedback becomes much more meaningful (by definition, review sites customers are
loyal to a particular business).
Tie reviews to actual purchases and purchase histories
A review on a review site is only that — there’s no other context that informs how a business should take action. Once businesses can tie a review to an actual customer, with a history of purchases, taking action from reviews becomes immediately clear.
Simplify and contextualize the process of collecting reviews
By making the process of reviews easier and more relevant for customers, the likelihood of receiving a useful response increases dramatically.
And that’s exactly why Thanx brings all of these opportunities directly to multi-location businesses.
With Thanx, customers receive a prompt to deliver feedback via their mobile phone (in addition to NPS) immediately following a purchase. Because the feedback request is relevant to a specific purchase, customers respond with actionable information.
The Thanx Merchant Dashboard immediately records this feedback and displays it in the context of each customer’s purchasing history. Businesses can thus easily respond to an individual customer and engage him/her directly. This functionality gives multi-location businesses (a) more reviews due to a more effortless user experience, (b) a record of their own review data, (c) the ability to communicate 1-to-1 with customers, and (d) feedback that’s tied to a specific person, location, and moment in time
Even better, Thanx captures reviews
after purchases — it’s literally impossible for a customer to post a review to a third-party review site before posting a review to Thanx. Since businesses capture their own data — before customers post to review sites — they can then do something about any negative feedback. As a result, would-be online negative reviews transform into glowing positive ones.
According to a data study of
hundreds of thousands of reviews,
customers who provide feedback in this way have 1.4X lifetime value — i.e. more visits, higher spending, over a longer period of time. In addition, using Thanx to respond to customer feedback has a dramatic impact on sales. By engaging customers in a 1-to-1 dialogue, sales grow 22% on average.
Here’s a specific (and real) example of the Thanx approach in action:
A multi-location business received rather scathing customer feedback from Max.
The business responded, albeit briefly, apologizing for the poor customer experience.
Max then responded back — again tearse — effectively saying, “That’s it? You’re not more sorry than that?!”
Normally, the business would write off this response — but with Thanx, the business first reviewed Max’s purchasing history.
Turns out, Max was the business’s single most valuable customer — he visited roughly daily and had spent thousands of dollars every month.
So instead, the business sent Max another apology and a reward for being so loyal.
The already-valuable Max further increased spending, and continued activity as the business’s most loyal patron.
Max also posted another glowing and highly-trafficked review to Yelp.
Cool, right? To be clear,
Thanx is the only marketing platform on the market that can achieve the above.
If you have more questions about customer feedback, reviews, and review sites, please
and we’ll get right back to you. We’re happy to help you figure out how to engage your customers in 1-to-1 dialogues in order to overcome the frustration of review sites.