How to Get Rid of Bad Ratings on Facebook

And other options you should consider

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Despite your best efforts, there they are—negative, low-star ratings, a big blemish on your Facebook business page. When they pop up, every business owner is tempted to write a lengthy response or just remove them entirely. But what's the best way to handle them?

You have a few possible options, one of which is to try to have the bad review removed. But before you do, ask yourself if that's the best course. It's OK if you don't have perfect reviews. In fact, having only five-star ratings can look a little suspicious. After all, nobody's perfect. Still, there are plenty of good reasons to remove negative ratings from your Facebook page.

Reasons to Remove Those Bad Reviews

When your Facebook profile is public, you can't control who can post reviews on your page. Competitors who want to make your business look bad or people with an ax to grind have full access. These reviews aren't an honest evaluation of your business; they're intended to bring you down. 

You might have even become the target of negative social “crowdsourcing." This happens when people who don't know anything about your business and who have never used your services begin posting bad reviews simply because someone asked them to. Or maybe they saw something about your business on Facebook they just didn't like, so they're out to get you. There are plenty of people looking for someone to troll on social media.`

Maybe you're just tired of Facebook deciding what shows on your page. Whatever your reason, you have a couple of options for removing ratings on your page. 

How to Hide Star Ratings 

You can report specific posts to Facebook and ask them to be removed.

  1. Click the three dots at the upper-right corner of the specific review.
  2. Select "Report Post."
  3. Follow the instructions to report your reason why you'd like the post removed.

There's no guarantee that Facebook will comply with your request, however. The review must either be unrelated to your business, clearly fake, or in some way violating Facebook's terms. Your alternative is simply to turn off page reviews entirely.

  1. Go to your Facebook page as an Admin.
  2. Select “Settings” at the upper-right corner of your page.
  3. Select “Templates and Tabs" on the left.
  4. Scroll down to Reviews or Recommendations and select "Settings."
  5. Toggle the switch to "Off" and select “Save Changes.”

Bingo! No more ratings (good or bad) will appear on your page. Keep in mind, though, that Facebook is always adjusting its options and settings. It's still a good idea to check your page regularly for any changes to Facebook's policies.

Other Ways to Combat Negative Reviews 

If you're dealing with a problem user on Facebook, you can choose to permanently block them from accessing your page. This should be a last resort for users that continually publish spam or fake reviews to your page.

Perhaps the best option for dealing with negative ratings and reviews is to use them to your advantage. After all, many people use social media to learn about businesses they are considering. Instead of cutting off that channel, try using mistakes as a way to improve your business' public image.

Respond to the poster publicly, right there on your page. Ask what you might do to change their opinion and improve their experience. Go above and beyond the call of duty. If the poster reacts negatively rather than accepting your offer to make things right, that's a public admission that they are the problem, not you.

You can also counteract the weight of low-star reviews. Ask happy clients and customers, as well as friends and family, to give you positive reviews. Eventually, this will bring your average up. Just don't overdo it—you don't want your brother Bob posting 25 great reviews or a multitude of five-star ratings inside of three days. Space out your requests and allow positive ratings to build over time.

A thoughtful social media strategy is a key part of any business marketing plan nowadays. Think through how you'll handle negative reviews before they happen, so you're ready when they do.