Damage to your online business reputation causes more harm to your business than offline damage. It’s true, and here’s why – the vast majority of people searching for your business, products, and services discover you online first.
What happens if your business’s name comes up with the words “ripoff” or “scam” when people are typing a search term into Google?
The effects are devastating!
Now that I have your attention, you might be wondering how online reputation management works. Fortunately, there are many things you can do to make sure you have a great reputation, or to make those nasty results disappear.
Steps You can Take to Restore a Good Reputation
1. Bury negative results. If your site ranks highly for a negative search term, the best thing to do is to bury the result past the third page of Google. Why? 98% of all searchers click on results on the first page of Google. Ranking on the fourth page is little different than ranking on the 1000th page.
This takes a ton of work – creating good content and then getting it to rank. It’s rarely something you can do on your own, and instead, you will need to hire the services of an SEO professional.
2. Responding to negative mentions. If someone says negative things about your business on your social media accounts or one of the many business directories like Yelp, respond to it. But, make sure you respond to it constructively. By demonstrating your professionalism and sincere concern for customer service, you can turn that negative mention into a positive one.
3. Monitor your site’s name for mentions. Believe it or not, monitoring your site for negative mentions is easier than you think. Simply go to www.google.com/alerts, and type in your company name. Type in some misspellings/variations of your name, and also include a geographic region if you are a local business. Whenever Google indexes new content regarding your company, you will receive a notification automatically.
If you haven’t checked your site for negative search results already, you can do so by Googling your company’s name. Search through the first 5 pages of the results, and see what comes up.
4. Encourage customers to post positive reviews. For some reason, it’s much easier for people to post and say negative things about any company than it is to post positive things. When you’ve really pleased a customer, they’re typically more than happy to do anything you ask. Ask them to post a positive review about your company on Google Places, or other reputable business directories where you are active. People are likely to take a positive action when pleased, but they’re much more likely to take one when you tell them exactly how.
Gain Leads & Increase Conversion Rates with Reputation Management
The whole reason to do online reputation management is to keep growing your business. And, if you follow these simple steps, you will cover the most essential methods for giving your business a great reputation. Keep them in mind as you move forward!