Know What People Are Saying
Today, everything that ever happened to you, or that has ever been said, can be found online. Even if a site is removed, sites like the WayBack machine save it, so it can be viewed forever. The easiest way to monitor your reputation is to use Google. Simply Google your company name along with words like ‘scam’, ‘rip-off’, and ‘horrible’, just to name a few. If nothing comes up, you’re good, for now. Then, you can set up Google alerts to report to you every time your company name shows up online for any reason. This will alert you to a problem immediately.
Explain What Happened
If you do find anything negative about your company when you do your Google search, don’t panic. This is actually a golden opportunity to shine. Instead of getting mad at the reviewer, consider what was said. Is there validity to the complaint? Has it been fixed? If the complaint was about a temporary situation, then explain how sorry you are and why it won’t happen again. If the customer misunderstood some kind policy, explain, calmly, what went wrong, and why. Above all, apologize and stay calm. While this might not appease that particular review, it will show everyone else reading the review that you are a conscientious company that cares. This will help people choose you, even if you have a few bad reviews.
Own Google’s First Page
Google has 10 slots for any keyword. You want those ten slots to belong to online properties you control. YouTube, Amazon, Squido, Hubpages, and others are all considered high-ranking sites that will easily show up on the first page when properly SEO’d with your brand name. These sites often overtake review sites or private defamatory webpages. You brand name should be everywhere online. Few people search beyond the first page, so if you can control those slots, you will be in good shape online.
Ask Customers For Reviews
No matter how great your product or service is, very few happy customers leave reviews. Most often, reviews come from angry customers. This can ruin any business. Take a proactive stance when it comes to reviews and ask your customers for them. You can make this easy for them through the use of QR codes, reminder cards and other marketing techniques.
Managing your online reputation is crucial to having a thriving business. A few things left unsaid or allowed to snowball out of control between a successful business and one that isn’t. Internet entrepreneur Michael Fertik can help you manage your reputation online.
Managing your online reputation is hard. You shouldn’t have to do it alone.