A business with a poor reputation won’t last much longer in business. Regardless of if you have a local store or an online one, the fact remains that somewhere somehow people are talking loudly about your business and the voices of every dissatisfied client rings the loudest.
Your online reputation is directly linked to the reviews and ratings left by customers. These reviews directly influence other prospects’ perception of you and even influence a search engine’s decision about your brand. It is dangerous indeed to leave such a vital factor in your business success to chance.
How to strengthen your online reputation?
- Build one
The first steps involve developing a professional and responsive website. State what you do and let your prospects feel your online presence.
- Optimize listings
Optimize your listings on Google, Yelp, and third party sites. Make yourself seen and provide the perspective you want prospects to have.
- Don’t forget social media
Social media is a thriving marketplace for every business and having live pages to represent your brand on these networks is a crucial step in strengthening your online reputation.
- Monitor and manage
After setting up, you move to the next stage of online reputation management, which largely includes monitoring and managing reviews.
Positive reviews are what every business owner prays for. Most times when you offer the best services, it’s easier to get positive reviews. At the same time, it can be tough because customers are often reluctant to talk about their great experience. And when they do, some owners do not respond to them. This is not surprising because as humans we tend to focus on negatives.
It is essential to respond to positive reviews. Your response should be professional, welcoming, and displaying gratitude. It is the perfect opportunity to highlight your success, seal a good business relationship, and reel in more clients.
Statistics show that about 53% of small business owners respond publicly to negative reviews. 48% respond privately while 7% ignore them altogether.
It’s common knowledge that negative reviews do more damage than good to your online reputation. This is why reputation management is so important. It helps you prioritize all reviews about your company and minimize the effect of the negative ones.
Responding publicly to negative reviews shows other clients that you acknowledged and handled a complaint about your service. It serves to control the situation and increase conversion rates because prospects can see you care about your customers’ experience.
Fake reviews exist and they can cause even more damage than negative ones. Bots, competitors, customers who mix up similarly named companies, and much more can leave fake reviews. Respond promptly to such fake reviews by:
- Flagging them
- Contact the platform or third-party site and the reviewer to have the fake review removed
- Respond publicly in a professional but clear manner to let people know the review is fake or has nothing to do with your company.
- Seal the deal
Follow up with your clients and encourage them to leave positive reviews. Share and promote positive content about your business. It can get tough to handle all this monitoring on your own and getting professional assistance could be your best bet. Reach out to us at The Review Generator to learn about your options.