For any brand with an online presence, maintaining a good online reputation is an essential part of marketing and growth. Today, a good number of people search for information online before making purchase decisions. The information they find helps them to form an opinion about a brand, a perception that could either be positive or negative. Mostly, the first thing that customers are likely to find is negative feedback. These reputation issues could be as a result of a bad review or mudslinging from the competition. Search engine reputation management helps you monitor and repair your business’s online reputation, which subsequently reinforces your business’s credibility.
What is Search Engine Reputation Management?
Search engine reputation management is a part of online reputation management that involves constant monitoring and influencing the general public impression that your company has online. The process helps to repair your online reputation so that people find positive information when they search your business. There are three main areas of manipulation: reputation issues caused by Google autocomplete, negative search results on the first SERP, and negative connotation related to Google suggestions at the bottom of SERPs.
One of the most important aspects of SERM is to start early before you find yourself in a crisis. This form of reputation management involves search engine optimization, a lot of content and blogging, press optimization, paid search marketing, and social media.
5 Important Aspects of Managing One’s Reputation (Business or Personal)
In this era of business on the internet, a solid online reputation is of great importance. Search engine reputation management comes with many benefits. Here are some of the reasons why you should consider these services.
#1 Develop Credibility Among Customers
Applying the SERM strategy is a great approach to develop the credibility of your brand. Making sure you have positive reviews and feedback will help you to inspire trust in your customers.
#2 Abolish Negative Publicity
Negative reviews and comments about your business can hurt your online reputation. Search engine reputation management helps you to get rid of these reviews, effectively ensuring you abolish any negative publicity. Creating positive links and publishing authoritative content will help in dealing with the negative advertisement.
#3 Improved Search Engine Rankings
Search engine reputation management helps you to gain the necessary recognition from potential customers. By optimizing your website for search engines, this practice contributes to higher online visibility. Since more people will search for your business online, this will naturally boost your website traffic.
#4 Increased Profitability
One of the main aims of any business is to improve their bottom line. A good search engine reputation attracts more business and customers to your company. Managing your reputation will increase your chances of getting conversions, ultimately leading to increased profitability.
#5 Lower Risk of Further Reputation Damage
Search engine reputation management will benefit your business both today and in the future. When you have a bad reputation, people who see negative comments will share it with others who will also do the same. Reputation management helps to address negative comments and minimize the damage caused by negative feedback.
5 Ways Reputation Potentially Affects Rankings
There is a close relationship between your reputation and ranking. Since search engines strive to provide searchers with great user experience, websites with a good reputation are likely to rank higher among search engine results. One of the factors that search engines will rely on when ranking your website is what people say about your business.
#1 User Reviews Sentiment
The total number of reviews you have will have a direct impact on your rankings. When you have more review sites featuring your company, your website will attract more backlinks that will give it credibility. By spending more time responding to reviews, you will not only be communicating with customers but also promoting brand mentions. In the end, user reviews sentiment will have a positive impact on your search engine rankings.
#2 Mentions Sentiment
When people mention your product in various online platforms, it encourages conversations about your brand. Customers will express their opinions of your brand and business, a factor that will shape your online reputation. Today, social media buzz is a popularity measure that can affect how your business ranks among search engine results. Brands whose websites contain links to active social media pages and have a high number of positive mentions are likely to be more visible online.
It is already clear that a good online reputation will help your business to attract more customers. Customers with whom you have a healthy relationship, as well as those who rely on reviews, will be interested in doing business with you. In essence, a good reputation will improve your click-through-rate since more people will visit your site when you come across as trustworthy and credible. Since CTR is an integral part of a website’s Quality Score, it will also improve your ranking.
#4 Accurate Business Information
Part of managing your online reputation involves making sure that your business information is consistent across various online listings. Consistent information, including business name, physical address, and phone number, will help you come across as a valid company that is open for business. Search engines will rely on this information to make it easier for customers to find and locate you. In a nutshell, accurate business information will affect your reputation, which will, in turn, affect your ranking.
#5 Site Architecture and Content
Optimizing your website will go a long way in influencing how customers perceive your business. Some of the factors that will shape your online reputation include the site speed, ease of navigation, relevant content, and the structure of your web pages. When online visitors have a good user experience, they will talk positively about your business, which will further help you to attract more potential customers. By leaving positive feedback, such visitors will help your business to rank higher.
How Do I Manage My Reputation?
Online reputation management and repair is an integral aspect of online marketing. In a world where customers can leave online reviews for the world to see, you need to keep an eye on what people are saying about your business. Here are some tips to help you manage your reputation.
Tip 1: Maintain an Active Social Media Presence
Managing your online reputation will require that you have a presence in all the relevant web properties. In addition to building out your social media accounts, you will have to develop an audience on them. Regular interaction with your customers will be a great way to increase your influence and shape how customers perceive your brand. Through social media, you will also give customers a platform to comment, raise concerns, ask questions, and submit complaints.
Tip 2: Blog More & Focus On Providing Value
Consistent blogging is one of the best ways to provide relevant and useful content to your target audience. If done properly, blogging will provide you with great content for your social media accounts and help with the site’s rankings. When it comes to managing your reputation, your blog will provide you with a solid foundation through which you can respond to major assertions made about your business.
Tip 3: Collect Feedback From Customers
To improve and maintain your online reputation, you will have to keep an eye on conversations touching on your business. Providing your customers with a platform through which they can leave reviews will make it easier for you to know what they think about your business. Encourage happy customers to leave reviews to minimize the risk of negative reviews. Even as you do this, take time to track mentions of your company so that you can respond appropriately and in good time.
Tip 4: Respond to All Reviews
Naturally, your business will receive both positive and negative reviews. Make sure you respond to all reviews, regardless of whether they are positive or negative. Listen to what your customers are saying while taking advantage of the opportunity to make the necessary changes in your areas of weakness. In case your company does something wrong or fails, you should own up to it and apologize genuinely to come across as a company that listens to customer’s concerns.
Make the Investment, Hire Pros & Get the Job Done Right!
If you are to develop and manage your reputation, you will have to invest both time and money. Managing your reputation is a serious activity that will have a huge impact on various aspects of your business. Without the necessary experience, you may not do a good job or may end up making some issues worse. If you do not know how to manage your business’s reputation online, you should consider hiring someone to do it for you.
Businesses around the world are constantly working on ways to ensure that customers have a positive perception of their brand and products. Reputation plays a critical role in influencing how customers view your brand, a factor that makes it important to maintain a good search engine reputation. At BizIQ, we help small businesses attract new customers and grow by providing effective marketing solutions. Contact us today to learn more about our quality search engine reputation management services.