So, your business is thriving, and you’re finally starting to get a flow of interest that turns into steady customers and in less time than you thought, your grand vision is coming to life! Stack the ‘as seen on’ credentials to your once empty media page.
But you wake up one morning and everything you worked so hard to build is suddenly not what’s being talked about in the media…
Instead, it’s that offensive costume you wore 10 years ago. Those two nasty reviews are trumping your hundreds of positive ones. Now, your 20-something tweets are being combed through and your family and friends who were just congratulating you, are calling to confront and crucify you.
Does this story sound familiar?
Some of the most successful and noble businesspeople have gone from hero to zero because they did not proactively consider that the internet is FOREVER. Every post, review or picture shared online can quickly be resurfaced if someone is determined enough to dig.
So how do you avoid risk after working so hard to create a name for yourself in the industry?
The answer is online reputation management.
The Impact and Importance of Online Reputation
Your digital reputation consists of a couple of different factors. First is your own personal reputation online, but also your business reputation (reviews) to draw in more customers.
Your brand’s online reputation is often the deciding factor on how audiences will react when bumping into you on the internet. And since the top three listings in a Google search get 70% of the clicks, it’s essential you climb the ranks for sales and long-term success.
An excellent reputation and positive online reviews will appeal to more people, meaning the business will have more sales and eventually, more customers.
So even if someone has never interacted with your brand before, if you appear positively and with a good reputation in their search, it immediately starts to build trust among total strangers. This is important for conversion since many people can visit, but most won’t be intrigued enough to make a cold purchase unless they feel a sense of trust in you delivering quality and value. After all, if others see enough people raving about something, natural social instincts to be part of the herd will kick in and lead people to want it too – and that’s why reputation management is so important for your conversion!
So how do you get there?
Deliver continuous value and results every time – never think ‘well one bad job out of thousands won’t really make a difference’. It could in fact be that ONE negative review that acts as a thorn in your side for years to come.
Secondly, be proactive in your business growth. Factors such as hiring the best people (not the cheapest) can play a great factor in your sales and customer experience translating into your growth and positive review potential. As an online page/website receives more traffic and positive reviews, they are bumped to the first page of Google search results. And the reality is, that most people don’t look past the first page of Google for products and services, so your only option is to have a sparkly reputation to increase your revenue!
Though starting on the right foot and delivering quality continuously is the best way to go, you can make a comeback and repair your reputation if your business is not currently doing so well.
If you’ve been hovering around the same sales figures and Google ranking for months on end because of a few poor reviews without a clue or strategy to change that, reputation management and review management is what you’re in need of!
When thinking long term about your business vision and goals, it’s also important to think backward about what exists that could hinder your current reputation. Taking the right steps to mitigate risk is always good business, as well as knowing the right tools and options you have to repair a bad reputation should it arise.