Cole Dalton
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Online Reputation Management: A Guide

Have you been putting off launching an online reputation management and marketing program for your company because you’re afraid of bad reviews? It can be nerve-wracking to solicit feedback, even if you’re sure you’re delivering the best customer experience possible. Many small business owners hate online reviews and don’t want to deal with them and the other aspects of online reputation management. 

Even if you’re actively managing your reputation within your local community, managing your online reputation is equally important today, especially with the prevalence of online business review sites. The bottom line? Not only do you need to know the ins and outs of reputation management, but you also need to have a strategy in place for your business.

What Is Online Reputation Management?

If prospective customers search for your business name or prime keywords associated with your business, what perception will they have of your local business? Will they find no trace at all of your business? Are they going to find bad reviews?

What they do find can be totally within your control as a business owner, and that’s where online reputation management comes into play. Online reputation management ensures that you stay on top of your reputation, getting your name out there positively, and dealing with any negative reviews as they show up to minimize their damage.

Start With a Search

If you haven’t already, take the time to do an internet search for your business name. What do you see in the search results? Does your business even show up? If it does, do you see any poor ratings that could hurt your reputation? Remember, your online review star ratings appear in multiple search results, such as Google maps, organic results, Angi, Facebook, Yelp, Houzz, and more.

Your search engine isn’t different from your customers, and if you see bad reviews and negative conversations surrounding your business, so are they. All it takes is one bad review to tank your sales. Online reviews are today’s word-of-mouth marketing; if people see one bad review about your business, it’s often enough to keep them from becoming customers. It is possible to deal with the damage that comes with a bad review, but you have to know a bad review is there to deal with it effectively. 

Make Time for Monitoring

Knowing what your customers are saying about you in real-time means you’ll be able to respond quickly to negative reviews. This process is known as social listening and can make a world of difference in keeping up with your business’s online reputation. First and foremost, claim your business listings on Google and other review sites and watch the reviews posted. You can also stay notified by setting up Google news alerts by business name or industry keywords. 

Beyond that, it truly takes an experienced online reputation management professional to keep a close eye on things. By building a full-fledged reputation marketing strategy for your company, you can harness the power of what your happiest customers have to say on your behalf. Getting great reviews and knowing how to use them is how you leverage your good reputation and help more prospects get to know, like, and trust you – and ultimately recommend you to their friends and neighbors, too.

The Bottom Line

Reviews can be scary, but the fact is that reviews are highly visible online, and bad reviews can tank your lead generation efforts. Simple strategies, software, and reporting that get you results. We help you get great reviews on any site that’s right for your business. Ready to increase your leads and take control of your online reputation? Request an Online Review Management Consultation today!