We have featured some tips on how to handle poor reviews, but what about the things that you absolutely should never do when responding to holiday let reviews? When you see someone telling the world that your rental has not met their expectations, it is all too easy to respond in the heat of the moment. Many rental owners take reviews personally. It can be very upsetting to hear that someone has not enjoyed their stay. It’s even more upsetting when their share their views on a very public listing.
While some guests may be complaining for nothing, others may have valid concerns. Even if the bad review is not a genuine issue, it can still affect your rental’s reputation. Prospective guests use reviews to help them make a decision on where to stay. Needless to say, any holiday let that has built up a few poor reviews will not be as enticing as one with glowing reviews.
The Worst Ways to Handle Holiday Let Reviews
For small lets that rely on word of mouth for their marketing, a bad review can be devastating. Before you let your emotions take over, it’s vital to step back and remain calm before responding. Some of the ways that you certainly don’t want to handle bad holiday let feedback include the following:
- Blaming your guest. You may be angry – even rightly so. Even if you have done nothing to warrant a bad review, you cannot ever publicly blame your guest however. In a world of transparent interactions, you need to always give the benefit of the doubt. You don’t have to jump through hoops or offer free accommodation if you truly have done nothing to warrant a bad review. At the same time, you still need to stay diplomatic.
- Responding in anger. Remember that your response is every bit as public as the review. Bashing out a furious reply is akin to airing your dirty laundry. If you let your anger guide your response, you may end up swearing, insulting, blaming or even slandering your guest. This ultimately makes YOU look bad. How you handle reviews is just as important as whether you get bad reviews in the first place.
- Getting defensive. On a similar note, it is also best to avoid defensiveness. Defensive responses often come across as sarcastic (and more than a little passive aggressive). Instead of responding from a place of injured pride, instead try to put yourself in your guest’s shoes. Be humble, apologise and, if the complaint is due to an error on your side, offer to make amends. Even if you are not to blame, being polite is always the way to go.
The best way to handle poor reviews is to avoid them in the first place. Working with an experienced short term rental manager will ensure that your property is expertly managed on a day to day basis. Guests have the benefit of concierge services, while you have the advantage of marketing, management and bookings management. A good manager will help you get better reviews for your rental, while helping you get the most from your investment.
To find out more about working with a manager, contact the Totalstay team today for a free, zero obligation evaluation of your holiday let.