Reviews are everywhere. From online shopping to restaurants and beyond, you can pretty much review everything these days. Reviews are important to consumers as they (ideally) give you the important details before you make your purchase. This is why seeing the whole picture, the good the bad and the in-between, is so important. Writing a review is only helpful if it is an accurate depiction of what happened on the job/how the food tasted/if the product worked.

You may have noticed that a lot of online reviews are extremes. Either the job was the worst in the world or the best experience to have ever taken place. In a world of extremes, it’s hard to find the middle ground. This is why writing a review that highlights both the highs and the lows of the project/meal/product are beneficial to everyone involved — the reader, the writer, and the company.

Benefits to the reader:

Picture coming across a review for a company you’re considering hiring that simply looks like this:

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It’s not very helpful and you’re left with a lot of questions: What exactly did the company do? What was so great about the job? A review that leaves the reader with more questions than answers is the sign of an unhelpful review.

As a reader, you want a review that describes the whole story. It’s important to read details but no so many you feel like you’re reading a novel about the person’s experience. Ideally, the review will describe not only the good but the less than perfect aspects of the job performed.

A review that describes the situation as accurately as possible is the best kind of review. While HomeStars has systems in place to check the authenticity of all reviews, we can’t tell people how to rate their experiences. If you’re looking for an easy way to know if you’re writing an effective review, check out this article.

The below review is a good example of an effective positive review.

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We know what the company did for the home, we know a price, and we know what the client was displeased about. This review lets the reader know they should check for level pictures should they decide to hire this company. It also lets the reader ask themselves if this is something that matters to them.

Benefits to the writer:

You might think that reviews really only benefit the company and others reading them. What you might not have considered is that reviews can also really help out the reviewer. This is their chance to tell their story and let others know what happened, especially in the case of negative experiences.

Reviewers can feel intimidated to leave a less than perfect review. While they may be less than happy, they may also be warry of the repercussions of a negative review. Ideally, letting the company know how you truly feel about the project helps everyone in the end, and they will try their best to make your experience a positive one.

Take a look at the below review. At first, this customer had a terrible experience, but after leaving this review the company was able to come out and correct their mistakes, making the customer’s experience a positive one.

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The benefits of writing an effective review here are clear to see. If the author of this review had written a generic review saying they were happy with the project when they really weren’t, or worse not written a review at all, the company would not have had the opportunity to come back and correct the situation. This review is a win-win for everyone.

Benefits to the company:

If you’re a company and you receive a less than favourable review, it’s normal to be upset. Sometimes people are over critical of your work, and their constructive criticism can seem like an attack. Remember, you can’t please everyone. Try not to take it personally and learn from the missed opportunities of previous clients. Here’s an example of a review where the client was less than pleased. The company saw the review and came back to right the situation, making the customer happy in the end.

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Ideally, the work is perfect the first time around, but when it’s not, how the company deals with the situation really says a lot about them. It’s also important that the review itself is written in a way that does not attack the company, but instead clearly states why the client is upset with the quality of work. The specifics and reasons why are what will help get the situation resolved.

If you are considering writing a negative review for a company, take a look at our review guidelines to make sure your review will be published and the company will see it.

Whether you’re reading, writing, or receiving reviews, it’s best practice to make sure your review is as effective as possible. Be honest and write about what you did and didn’t like. As long as the content of your review is helpful to those reading it, there is no reason why it should not aid others in hiring the best home professional for their next job. In the case of a glowing positive review, remember to explain why you are pleased with the service, and give details about what exactly made your experience so memorable. We also like seeing mediocre reviews, so don’t forget to submit those as well. Sometimes a job is just so-so, but it’s still useful to know.

HomeStars’ goal is to help Canadians connect with and hire home professionals, and the best way to do that is to get effective, helpful reviews from the community. So, the next time you go to write a review, consider the greater impact it’s going to have on everyone and know you’re going to being helping someone hire better.

Have a review that needs writing? Submit it here. Happy reviewing, everyone!

Posted by Jessica Greaves