Earning happy customers through bad reviews

Businesses may be afraid that negative reviews posted to online forums could tarnish their reputation, but new studies show that in fact, bad customer reviews can positively impact customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Businesses may be afraid that negative reviews posted to online forums could tarnish their reputation, but new studies show that in fact, bad customer reviews can positively impact customer satisfaction and loyalty.

A 2011 Retail Customer Report found that 68 percent of consumers who posted a negative review on a social networking site after a bad shopping experience received a response from the company, according to Right Now. As a result, 33 percent turned around and posted a positive review while 18 percent turned into loyal customers and purchased more.

On the other hand, many businesses are afraid of the negative responses and go through the forum, erasing bad reviews so other customers won't see them, according to Business 2 Community. This can actually be a mistake for brands because customers are suspicious when they see only positive reviews on a company's site.

It can actually cause distrust in the reviews, according to The Wall Street Journal. Hotel reviews have recently come under scrutiny as customers have realized that some businesses filter reviews or submit false testimonials to make the brand look good. In fact, a Revoo study found that 95 percent of customers become suspicious when they don't see any negative reviews, while two-thirds say they trust a company more when they see a mix, reports Business 2 Community.