Managing Your Business Reputation Online
A Guide to Online Reputation Management for Businesses
Are you aware of the things that show up in Google when you type your business name? In this search-happy world, business owners should never take their online footprint for granted. Research shows that a 20% loss is likely whenever potential customers find even a single negative article on the first page of the organic rankings. Just imagine how much money you’d lose if there’s a ton of negative reviews. Before things take a turn for the worse, take control of your online reputation by following these tips.
1) Assess and fix your current situation
Your first order of business is to Google your brand and see what appears on the first page. Aside from your business name, you may also want to look up your own name as well as those of the familiar figures in your company. Before potential customers do business with you, they’ll make a quick Google search. What they see has a great influence on whether they’ll choose you or head elsewhere.
You’d want to get rid of old party pictures, embarrassing status updates, and any controversial content that could harm the reputation of your company. Do this for all your online properties, especially on your social media accounts.
2) Optimize your business website
It goes without saying that any business wanting to succeed should create a business website. For most businesses, a website serves as the go-to resource for all information about their products or services. What’s great about building a website is that you have total control over it. Take advantage of this by controlling your digital narrative, highlighting your credentials, and showcasing why you’re better than the competition.
When it comes to adding content on your site, take note that you may have to diversify a bit. What you post on your blog might have a different tone compared to your social media posts. See what kind of content best resonates with your target audience on each platform you’re using.
3) Conquer the top 10 search results
Feel satisfied when you see your business website ranking on top of the results when you look up your brand name? Keep in mind that the first page of Google shows 10 results, which means you need to make sure that the other 9 results should be related to your company as well.
As much as possible, you’d want to claim all of these positions. You can do this by creating accounts on multiple social channels. If you’re already using Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter, then branch out to less popular options such as Quora, LinkedIn, and Slideshare.
Even if you feel like you wouldn’t have an excellent use for a particular social media platform, it doesn’t hurt to create an account just for optimization purposes. You can even try creating videos and uploading them to YouTube, which could generate more interest in your business.
4) Encourage customers to leave reviews
As noted earlier, prospective customers will read online reviews before deciding to avail of your products or services. Most people would hesitate to choose you if you have less than 4 out of 5 stars. For this reason, it’s imperative that you encourage customers to leave honest reviews.
Bear in mind that you need to claim and verify your Google listing for this to work effectively. After searching for your brand name, people will see important business information such as your business name, address, and contact number. But they’ll also see your average star rating and how many reviews you have. The more positive reviews about your business, the more customers will be willing to do business with you.