It’s totally understandable if you read the title and thought it’s ludicrous that negative customer feedback on Amazon can possibly have any value. But as FeedbackExpress will show you, there are various ways you can find the silver lining in the cloud and really turn it into an opportunity.

Way #1: Your Competitors’ Negative Feedback Can Help You Avoid Potential Pitfalls

You know the saying “the best defense is a good offense”? It means finding your opponents weaknesses and exploiting them.

When it comes to negative feedback on Amazon, it means looking at the negative reviews on your competitors’ pages, finding common themes of complaints, then highlighting how you do the opposite. For example, if a lot of buyers for Joe’s Phone Cables complain that the cord ends fray after a couple months, you’d be smart to include the strength of yours in your product descriptions.

Way #2: Get the Negative Reviewers Together in a Focus Group

If you’re finding negative feedback on your page, why not go straight to the horse’s mouth and ask them what would make the product better? Or, in other words, get a focus group going.

Any private label seller worth their salt doesn’t go straight from 0-100; instead, they work in phases. Think of how many iterations Apple went through with their iPhone. The original one was a huge success, but they didn’t stop there and rest on their laurels (Blackberry, I’m looking at you).

What Apple did was evaluate how the market received the iPhone, listened to what users liked and disliked, then applied new features to the next iPhone.

You should do the same with the buyers who left negative feedback on your page. Create a custom email list asking them to check out your newest iteration and let you know what worked and what didn’t. Then, apply those changes to the next batch to minimize the amount of feedback on the next release.

Even if you don’t use this method, don’t ignore the negative reviews. Always respond to them so that they don’t feel ignored on top of feeling lousy for a negative shopping/product experience.

Way #3: Reach Out to the Masses With a Video

Sometimes it’s not possible to respond to each and every disappointed customer, so you’ll need to find a way to address them all at once. When the National Hockey League (NHL) in North America held their playoffs this past spring, one of the heaviest favourites to go all the way was swept in the first round. It was one of the most stunning upsets in league history, and the team wasted no time in issuing its fans an apology via Twitter.

In the past, Amazon sellers have written a paragraph apologizing for falling short of expectations, but we’re approaching a new decade now and so a new medium is required: video. Not only is it not as widely used as writing a paragraph of “I’m sorry”’s and helps you stand out, but it also puts a face to the label and personalizes your product.

In fact, you don’t have to get super fancy. Setting up your phone on a tripod will suffice, as well as help convey a sense of urgency and genuineness. Look directly at the camera and outline the ways in which you’ve fallen short, upload the video to YouTube, then send that link to the customers who left negative feedback.

Way #4: Get Feedback From Those Who Know You Best

You spend about a third of your time with your staff, so go to them when looking for ways to improve. It can be tough to see the forest for the trees when you’re right in the middle of something, but your staff can provide a fresh outside perspective to jolt you back on the right path.

A quick and easy way of doing this is to take a screenshot of a negative review, then circulate it through email among your staff and ask them to point out ways along the chain the problem can be avoided in the future. Maybe it’s something as simple as investing in a different kind of product packaging, or maybe it’s something more complex like negotiating a contract with a different supplier. Either way, be open to raw and honest feedback from your staff over how you can improve.

Final Thoughts

You know how we said in the second way that you should never ignore negative feedback? It can feel harsh to read those negative words and feel motivated to do something about it, but luckily FeedbackExpress can help tremendously. You can get phone alerts right when negative reviews are left, enabling you to immediately issue a template message and act on it the right way. But it only works if you’re using it, so sign up now and enjoy a free 30-day trial.

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