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May 25, 2023

How to Use Reviews to Manage Your Business More Effectively

Use reviews to identify operational opportunities and manage teams more effectively. With robust reporting metrics, it's easy to do so.

Every business owner wants to get feedback about their business. In many industries, asking for customer feedback is an integral part of the business process. Usually collected via private feedback surveys, leaders want to know how customers feel so they can improve and hit their performance goals.

Many business owners object to using public reviews as a way to get feedback because they fear they will stack up new negative reviews. 

Negatives happen but, in our experience, asking every single customer for reviews actually produces a much higher volume of positive reviews. (If you’re not already generating a large volume of reviews, check out Invite – automated review generation software). 

Once you’ve got a solid volume of reviews coming in, we want to demonstrate the innate value of those reviews and how, with the right reporting tools, they can help drive improvements that will help you better manage your business and boost its overall success. 

In this post, we'll outline 3 key ways you can use reviews to gain a competitive advantage for your business, improve your product/service offerings, and better meet the needs of your customers. 

How can reviews help you manage your business?

1. Recognize common themes

2. Spot areas for improvement

3. Track employee performance


1. To recognize common themes 

Reviews provide valuable and trustworthy insight from your customers. Are there certain products or services that customers consistently praise or criticize? Are there areas where customers are consistently unhappy? 

By taking the time to read and analyze your reviews, you can better understand what circumstances are actively affecting your business's performance. 

For example, let’s say you’re expanding your business and are currently undergoing renovations. By tracking how frequently terms like “renovation” or “construction” are mentioned, you can better measure the effects of this change on your business and your customers. 

You’ll gather a better understanding of how changes are received by your customers and the ability to make more informed business decisions moving forward. 

Essentially, monitoring common themes in your reviews helps you understand the customer experience from a new perspective. It will give you a glimpse of how your business is perceived in today’s competitive market - what your customers like, what they dislike, and what you could be doing to improve down the line. 

How Widewail Helps with this: Our expanded reporting helps you better understand common trends in customer feedback. Reviews are tagged and sorted by Topic to make it easy for you to glean insights into your business performance at scale. 

To simplify things, Widewail adds some topics to your review reporting automatically. For Engage customers, Widewail’s response team enhances reporting by adding additional topics as they respond to your reviews.   


2. To spot areas for improvement

Just as reviews provide insight into what your business is doing well, they shed light on areas your customer service could be improved. 

For example, if multiple customers are leaving reviews about slow and inattentive service, that may be a sign that you need to reevaluate your staffing levels or improve your processes to reduce wait times. 

Similarly, if people frequently comment on a particular product's low quality, you may need to review your manufacturing process or increase your quality control measures.

Whether it's addressing customer service concerns or improving the quality of your products, reviews can serve as a roadmap for how to enhance your business's overall performance. 

Further, actively monitoring and responding to your reviews can stop potential problems before they become major issues and better inform your decisions about how to adequately meet your customer's needs. 

How Widewail helps with this: The central Widewail platform lets you view both Representative and Topic ratings on a bar graph or scatter plot, making it easier to track your performance all in one place. You can see which areas your business is doing well in, which employees are delivering consistently positive results, and what aspects of your business need improvement. This feature is available for both single and multi-group locations. 

voice of the customer report promo in article


3. To track employee performance. 

Reviews can also help you streamline your employee management processes by informing how you measure individual performance. 

Employees performing well will be mentioned by your happy customers in five-star reviews. By monitoring this feedback, you can identify which employees consistently go out of their way to provide stellar customer service and give them credit where it’s due. 

On the flip side, employees who are underperforming will be mentioned by unhappy customers in your negative reviews. By keeping track of whose names are mentioned and when you can identify which employees may need additional training or coaching to improve in the future. 

Taking the time to analyze customer feedback surrounding your employees is one of the easiest ways to gauge how effective your management strategies are. It’s a direct line of feedback you can leverage to better manage your team, make necessary improvements, and create a positive work environment that benefits you, your team, and your customers.

How Widewail helps with this: Widewail users have the ability to tag representatives by name across all of their reviews. Our reporting tool keeps track of which employees are mentioned most and in what context, making it easy to check average ratings associated with each individual and to offer praise or appreciation for those who consistently offer exceptional service. 

To further save you time, Widewail automatically tags any name mentioned in a review for you as a “Representative Tag.” For those reviews that do not include mention of an employee, but reference a customer-employee interaction you are familiar with, you have the ability to add tags manually. 

In conclusion, reviews are a powerful tool that can be harnessed by business owners to stay in tune with customer needs and drive growth forward. 

By taking the time to listen to customer feedback, you can gain valuable insights into your employee's performance, identify areas where your business practices can be improved, and better understand how your business is perceived by current and potential customers. 

If you're interested in learning more about how reviews can impact your online reputation and are ready to start incorporating reviews into your everyday business strategy, check out Invite - our automated review generation tool.

Ultimate Playbook for Reputation Management

Emily Keenan

Originally from Scarborough, Maine, I moved to Vermont after graduating from St. Lawrence University, where I received my BA in English and Spanish. I have always been interested in writing and communication, which is what initially drew me to the Review Response Specialist position at Widewail. In my spare time, I can be found reading, playing electric guitar, or strolling/biking around one of Burlington’s many scenic trails. I always welcome the opportunity to talk about my work, and invite anyone with questions or comments to reach out or connect with me on LinkedIn.

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