Having a positive online image is vital for any size and type of business. Millions of people are using the internet every day, searching for entertainment and information on goods and services they are interested in. Along with your own website, there’s Yelp, Google, TripAdvisor and Facebook, just to name a few, that people could be using to read online reviews about your business to help them decide whether or not to purchase your offerings. According to the American Marketing Association, 90 percent of consumers trust peer reviews, while 70 percent trust online reviews, and when making purchase decisions, internet users trust recommendations from people they know and opinions posted by unknown consumers online more than advertisements on TV, radio or in magazines.
So, what can you do to sustain your business’s positive online image, even if someone posts a negative comment on your website or social media channels?
1. Add fresh and educational content to your site on a regular basis. Blogging is the easiest and most effective way to showcase your expertise and ethical values. If you follow best practices for blogging, this will generate a lot of positive comments on your website and social media, and give you a big boost in SEO.
2. Make it easy for potential and current customers to contact your business. There’s nothing more frustrating for a potential or current customer than wanting to get into contact with you and not being able to find your phone number or email address anywhere. Offering several customer service channels is a good idea. If a customer can easily get in contact with you to report a concern or complaint, they are more likely to contact your organization directly instead of leaving a bad review on another site.
3. If someone posts a negative review, don’t ignore or delete it. Address it immediately! In the case of your online image, out of sight does not mean out of mind. This is especially true for sites other than your own like Facebook, Yelp, Google and Trip Advisor because it’s not possible to delete negative reviews. All of these reviews, both positive and negative, become a part of your virtual reputation, and will most likely show up in search engine feeds. So make sure that you are handling each and every review in a positive, professional way.
4. Have an attractive, SEO-optimized website that is easy to navigate. The online appearance of a business website speaks a lot about its legitimacy - it could be the first impression people have of you! You want to combine an attractive layout with accessibility and all of the proper SEO and meta-tags set up internally so you will appear in the search engines.
5. Actively monitor everything that is being said about your business online. This is a basic tenet of good review management. Check your social media channels on a daily basis and regularly google your business’s name and other keywords associated with your offerings. You can also set up a Google Alert to let you know whenever your business is mentioned online. Take all comments left about your business seriously, and be sure to thank customers for their positive reviews!
Whether you need more reviews to increase your online presence or you’re overwhelmed trying to track and reply to all of your feedback, our review management software is designed to do the hard work for you. It brings all of your reviews from hundreds of different websites like Yelp and TripAdvisor into one place for easy management. Schedule your free consultation right now to see how we can help you grow your business grow!