July 1, 2024

How to Write Good Review Responses Fast (Without AI)

From improving customer retention to boosting your SEO, there are numerous ways that businesses benefit from responding to customer reviews. With the recent explosion of AI tools for businesses, such as ChatGPT and Copilot, more and more businesses are now turning to AI to generate review responses.

With AI tools, businesses respond to online reviews quickly, courteously, and professionally, but alongside these advantages, they also have some potential drawbacks. For example, not all AI tools can produce branded review responses. Another area where AI can struggle is dealing with complex or mixed reviews.

The good news is that you can overcome these challenges and provide high-quality responses to your customers — without sacrificing speed or the level of detail.

In this guide, we'll explore some of the best strategies for creating good review responses without AI, like using review response templates for negative, neutral, or positive reviews. 

We'll also demonstrate how to quickly create engaging, highly personalized review responses by editing AI-generated text. Last but not least, we'll answer some of your FAQs about responding to positive reviews and provide five key elements to include in your responses. 

How to craft a good review response fast 

Time is of the essence when it comes to review responding — especially when you're responding to an unhappy customer's feedback.

For example, one survey found that approximately 12% of consumers want businesses to address customer complaints and issues within 15 minutes, and 46% want them addressed within four hours.

With such an emphasis on speed, businesses need a highly efficient approach to review management, especially multi-location brands that must manage numerous listings. 

Several ways, such as customizing response templates or editing AI-generated text, can speed up the response process without diminishing the detail or quality of your responses.

This approach streamlines the response writing process and gives you an opportunity to tailor your response to the reviewer, your business, and your industry without the cumbersome process of writing responses completely from scratch. 

5 key elements of negative and positive review responses

Whether you're writing original content, using AI to help you generate text, or modeling your reply on a pre-written template, there are certain elements that you should always try to include in your review responses. For example, it's best practice to include the customer's name in your response instead of using a generic title like "Valued Customer" or "Dear Customer."

Before we start diving into our review response examples and templates, let's begin by going over five key elements that you should always aim to include when replying to online reviews:  

  1. Gratitude for the customer’s feedback
  2. Personalization elements
  3. A sincere apology (if responding to a negative review)
  4. Emphasis on customer satisfaction
  5. An invitation to return to the business or continue the conversation

Let's take a closer look at each of these elements and how to incorporate them into your review replies. 

1. Gratitude for the customer’s feedback 

When someone leaves your business a 5 star review or rating, it's important to show gratitude by providing a fast and friendly response, which builds on the reviewer’s positive experience and helps establish customer loyalty. For example, you can use phrases like:

  • "Thank you for taking the time to leave us a comment, [ Customer Name ]!"
  • "Thank you so much for your kind words, [ Customer Name ]."
  • "Thanks for taking the time to leave us feedback about your experience at [ Business Name ]." 

Learn more about ways to thank customers for a positive review

2. Elements of personalization 

Whether you're responding to positive, neutral, or negative reviews, personalization is always key. 

Salesforce calls out "proactive, personalized service" as one of the must-watch customer service trends of 2024, and suggests "responding to customers with personalized, relevant answers" on review sites and social media. 

Here are a few examples of personalization in response to a review: 

  • "Your positive feedback about our new and improved cocktail menu means so much to our bartending team!" 
  • "We take pride in providing some of the best beachside dining that Miami has to offer."  
  • "Thank you for leaving us such a great rating after your recent visit to our [ Town or City ] location, [ Customer Name ]!"

3. A sincere apology (for negative reviews) 

When the customer experience is mixed or negative, it's important to offer a brief but sincere apology, and emphasize your commitment to addressing the customer's concerns. Here are a few examples of ways to phrase an apology to a customer after receiving a bad review or rating:

  • "We're deeply sorry to hear about your negative experience, which doesn't reflect the high standards we always strive to meet for our customers."
  • "We truly apologize for the misunderstanding and any inconvenience that you experienced as a result."
  • "We're so sorry to hear about this issue, [ Customer Name ]."
  • "Please accept our sincere apologies for the issue involving your [ order, meal, payment, appointment, subscription, vehicle, etc. ]." 

4. Emphasis on customer satisfaction 

Each time you reply to a review, you can promote your brand for free by educating new and potential customers about your brand's best qualities..

Here are some ways to show that customer satisfaction is your organization's top priority in your response to a negative or positive review:

  • For a negative review response:some text
    • "At [ Business Name ], we're committed to ensuring that all of our customers receive a 5-star experience."
    • "Please be assured that our team is here to get your [ maintenance request, subscription issue, concerns about noise, etc. ] resolved as swiftly as possible."
    • "Our goal is to make sure that all of our guests enjoy a comfortable and peaceful stay."
  • For positive review responses:some text
    • "We can't wait to provide another great experience at your next visit!"
    • "It was our pleasure to provide you with the high quality service that [ Business Name ] is known for."
    • "We were so delighted to read your kind words about how easy and stress-free [ Staff Member ] made the [ rental, check-in, check-out, application, etc. ] process, since providing a great customer experience is always our highest mission." 

5. Encouragement to return or reach out 

Keep the conversation going with a friendly sign-off encouraging the customer to reach out or return. Here's how to close out your response with an invitation to follow up:

  • "We hope to hear more from you soon!"
  • "We hope we'll have another opportunity to serve you again soon!"
  • "We're always here to help if you ever have questions or need assistance, so please don't hesitate to contact our customer support team!"
  • "Please don't hesitate to contact us at [ phone number or email address ] if you need further assistance or would like to share any additional feedback with our team."
  • "Please contact us at your earliest convenience so that we may better assist you."
  • "We look forward to speaking with you more soon, [ Customer Name ]." 

Using AI vs. response templates to respond to positive reviews

You don't have to write your responses from scratch when you reply to customer feedback. Modifying existing text's typically faster, easier, and more efficient.

There are two basic ways to implement this approach:

  1. Editing AI-generated review responses
  2. Editing review response templates

How to edit and improve AI responses to reviews 

Even if you don’t plan on using AI to generate your review responses, it can still be a useful tool for creating “rough draft” content. 

For example, you can use ChatGPT to generate a generic positive review response and then improve on its content by adding details specific to the review. 

chatgpt for review responding

Using this method allows you to avoid repetitive phrasing, one of the primary drawbacks of using AI to respond to positive reviews. It also enables you to work keywords and branded language into your responses, which helps search engines — and potential customers — find your business more easily.  

Let's examine two examples of how to revise and improve a typical ChatGPT-generated response to positive customer feedback. 

Positive review response example #1 

First, we must provide ChatGPT with a relevant prompt, which can be formatted as a statement or a question. 

For this example, let's ask ChatGPT a question: "What is a good response to a positive review from a customer?" 

good review responses positive reviews

Here's how ChatGPT replies to the prompt in the screenshot above: 

respond to positive reviews review response examples

We can also phrase our prompt as a statement instead of a question — for instance, “Generate a positive review response example” — which yields similar results: 

responding to positive reviews customer relationships

Based on our two ChatGPT prompts, we now have two AI responses to work with. 

Let's start by revising the first response, which originally reads as follows: 

"Thank you so much for your kind words! We're thrilled to hear that you had a great experience with us. We work hard to ensure our customers' satisfaction, and it's always rewarding to receive such positive feedback. If you have any more feedback or need further assistance, please don't hesitate to reach out. We look forward to serving you again soon!" 

As you can see, this response already incorporates many key elements we discussed earlier in this guide, like thanking the customer and welcoming them to reach out or return. 

However, we can improve it even more by adding relevant details that make the response sound more personalized: 

"Thank you so much for your wonderful review, [ Customer Name ]! Our team is thrilled to hear that you enjoyed such a positive experience [ dining with us, visiting our senior living community, touring our studio apartments, scheduling your pick-up time, booking your storage unit, etc. ]. We work hard to ensure our customers' satisfaction, and it's always rewarding to receive such positive feedback. If you'd like to share any additional comments or need further assistance, please don't hesitate to reach out. We look forward to [ serving your family again soon, welcoming you back for another delicious meal, welcoming you to your new apartment, having another opportunity to host you, etc. ]!" 

Positive review response example #2

Let's repeat the process with our second positive review response example. 

Here's the original text supplied by ChatGPT:

"Wow! Thank you so much for your fantastic review! We're delighted to hear that you had such a positive experience with us. Our team works hard to ensure every customer receives top-notch service, and it's incredibly rewarding to know we hit the mark with you. Your satisfaction is our priority, so if there's anything else we can do to assist you further, please let us know. We can't wait to welcome you back again soon!"

By making a few minor tweaks, we can create an even stronger reply, showcasing the brand's personality while educating potential customers: 

"Thank you so much for your positive feedback, [ Customer Name ]! We're absolutely delighted to hear that you had such an outstanding experience [ with, at, while visiting, etc.] [ Business Name ]. Our team works hard to provide all our customers with nothing but the best service, and it's hugely rewarding to know we were able to deliver 5 star quality for you! Your satisfaction is our priority, so if there's anything else we can do to assist you, please don't hesitate to let us know. Thanks again for taking the time to share your positive review, and we can't wait to welcome you back to [ Business Name ] soon!"

How to use review response templates 

A review response template is a pre-written reply that can be copied and pasted to different review sites, like Google and Yelp, saving you time on writing and proofreading.

Like AI-generated review responses, template-based responses usually benefit from some light editing. For example, you can incorporate details from the customer's review into your response, which increases personalization and provides a more satisfying experience for the customer.

Along with boosting personalization, editing the template also gives you a chance to:

  • Insert keywords you're trying to rank for (like "late night pizza delivery" or "jeep wranglers for sale")
  • Eliminate or reword repetitive phrasing
  • Incorporate your brand's unique messaging, voice, and personality into each response

Below, you'll find a mix of negative, neutral, and positive review examples and modifiable response templates. You can use these templates to help you reply to your own reviews, which should increase your efficiency by decreasing your writing time. 

Positive review response example #3

negative reviews positive review response customer feedback
respond to positive review response examples

Positive review response template: "Thank you so much for sharing your positive experience with us, [ Customer Name ]! Our entire team was delighted to read your great review of [ Business Name ]. We're pleased to know that [ Staff Member ] was able to provide excellent customer service for you and [ install your new HVAC system, reschedule your appointment, resolve your maintenance request, help you find the right storage unit for your needs, etc. ]. If there's anything else we can assist you with, please don't hesitate to [ contact us, reach out, give us a call, etc.]. We look forward to serving you again in the future!" 

Positive review response example #4 

positive review response examples customer feedback
positive review response templates repeat customer

Positive review response template: "Hi [ Customer Name ], thank you so much for your 5 star review! We're so happy to hear that you had a positive experience with [ Business Name ], and your kind words about [ Staff Member's ] [ professionalism, attention to detail, friendly service, etc. ] are truly appreciated. It was our pleasure to [ help you find the right choice for your budget, welcome you to your new apartment, provide you with information about your warranty, serve you and your family, etc. ]. If there's anything else we can help you with, please don't hesitate to contact us! Thanks again for your great review, [ Customer Name ], and we look forward to serving you again soon."

Here are even more positive review response examples your business can use. 

Mixed or negative review response example #1 

It’s equally important to manage negative reviews, which can damage your online reputation and discourage potential customers. By responding to negative feedback on review sites like Yelp and Trustpilot, you can resolve issues sooner, improve customer retention, and provide a more positive experience for your customers.

positive review response examples
positive review response example

Negative review response template: "Hi [ Customer Name ], thank you for taking the time to leave us a review and rating. We sincerely apologize for the misunderstanding about your [ type of product or service ] and any inconvenience it may have caused. Your feedback helps us improve, and we're eager to make this issue right with you. Please reach out to our [ dealership, front desk, customer support team, patient representatives, etc. ] at [ contact information ] at your earliest convenience so that we can better address your concerns. We thank you again for your feedback, [ Customer Name ], and are looking forward to hearing more from you soon."

Mixed or negative review response example #2 

customer's feedback repeat customer 1 star review
positive review response templates

Mixed review response template: "Hi [ Customer Name ], thank you so much for taking the time to leave us a review and provide valuable feedback. Please accept our sincere apologies that you had to experience this issue and [ didn't receive what you ordered, didn't receive the communication you were expecting from us, weren't completely satisfied with your installation, etc. ]. At [ Business Name ], our mission is to deliver outstanding customer service, and we truly regret missing the mark on this occasion. Your feedback is being carefully reviewed, and we encourage you to contact us at [ phone number or email address ] if there's anything else we can do to assist you. We thank you again for your review and hope to hear more from you soon." 

For more templates, check out these additional example responses to negative reviews

Get fast, personalized responses to all of your online reviews

Review management is essential if you want to grow your business — but trying to do it manually is tedious and time-consuming.

Stop wasting precious bandwidth on inefficient review response strategies. Instead, upgrade to a done-for-you review response service that automates every step of the process.

Whether your business is large or small, ResponseScribe makes it effortless to manage your online reputation. We respond to positive, neutral, and negative reviews on over 50 platforms, including Google, Yelp, Apple Maps, Trustpilot, Tripadvisor, the Better Business Bureau (BBB), and industry-specific platforms like Zocdoc.

We respond to your customers with human-written replies or AI-generated text, depending on what strategy you prefer. ResponseScribe gives you the freedom to choose — and the flexibility to change plans any time, without any fees or long-term contracts. 

ResponseScribe also includes business reports and review sentiment analysis, giving you real-time insights into what your customers value most. 

Optional alerts keep you updated on the status of every review, ensuring every word meets your standards and aligns with your messaging. If you aren't satisfied with a proposed response, you can request revisions until our team perfects it. 

Combining the latest AI technology with more than 10 years of experience responding to millions of reviews, ResponseScribe is the simplest and most reliable way to boost your reputation. Learn more about how it works, then get started with a free trial period. 

Start your free trial of our done-for-you review response service  

ResponseScribe is the easiest way to generate fast, on-brand, personalized review responses. Simply connect your review sites with our intuitive platform, and our team of experienced content creators will immediately get to work replying to your customers. 

Boost your brand reputation, improve customer satisfaction, attract new customers, and earn repeat business — all without writing a sentence. Start your free trial of ResponseScribe today and discover why over 10,000 brands trust our done-for-you review response service.  

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