The 5 Best Ways To Improve Online Reputation
Maintaining a positive online reputation has never been more important. That’s because consumers increasingly turn to the Internet to determine if businesses are trustworthy, affordable, reliable, and provide good customer service. If your business does not have a great reputation, you could be losing thousands of prospective customers each year.
These stats clearly show how much your online reputation matters:
- 97% of consumers search online for local businesses, with 12% doing it daily
- 90% of people will read online reviews before they visit a business
- 85% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations
- A study by the World Economic Forum found that 25% of a company’s market value is directly attributable to its reputation
- 41% of companies that experienced a negative reputation event reported loss of brand value and revenue
So, how do you improve your online reputation? Read on to find out.
What Is Online Reputation?
Online Reputation is the reputation of a product, service, person, or business on the Internet and other digital platforms. It is created and impacted by various forms of online content and interactions between Internet users, including:
- User reviews
- Discussions on web forums
- Social media posts
- Video reviews
- News stories
- Interactions between users in chat rooms
- Interactions between your business and consumers
- Content on your website
Why Does Having a Positive Online Reputation Matter?
Here are just a few of the ways that having a positive online reputation can affect your business.
Consumers are far more likely to trust a business with a stellar online reputation. It changes how they perceive your brand and how they interact with your business.
Businesses with many great reviews, high ratings, positive links, and excellent online visibility enjoy more credibility. This means customers, influencers, stakeholders, employees, and peers will be more interested in engaging with your business.
Job seekers often consider a businesses online reputation before deciding if they should apply for a job with that company. It can also impact their decision to accept a job offer. One survey found that 69% of job seekers are likely to reject a job offer from a business with a bad reputation. Conversely, having an excellent reputation will help you attract high-quality candidates.
Better brand awareness
Having a strong online reputation means your businesses brand will be more visible. This leads to many significant benefits.
Business with an excellent online reputation attract more customers, which quickly translates into more profit.
How To Improve Online Reputation?
1. Encourage users to leave reviews
Consumers often read online reviews to determine a businesses professionalism, affordability, and reliability. This makes reviews one of the most critical components of your online reputation.
The simplest way for your business to generate more positive reviews is to ask your satisfied customers to write them. Most satisfied customers are more than happy to do so.
There are several ways to request a review from your customers including emails, newsletters, in-person conversations, on your website, and via social media. You can also use various enticements used to encourage customers to leave reviews. For example, you could offer your customers a 10% discount if they leave a review. Alternately, enter customers who leave a review into an exclusive competition.
We Love The Guys has developed a wide range of innovative techniques which make it easier for customers to leave reviews and encourage to do so. Contact us to learn more.
2. Improve Your Current Website… Or Create a New One
The quality of your website plays a major role in determining how consumers perceive your business. If your website is attractive, packed with functionality, and easy-to-use, it will make your visitors look favourably upon the business.
On the flip side, having a poorly designed or difficult-to-use website will make consumers think your business is poorly run. They will assume that you are not technologically savvy or that the business does not make enough money to update its website.
Invest some time and money into making your website as good or better than your competitor’s websites. Consider spending some time or money on creating useful content for your customers and integrating your website with social media. A small investment can pay huge dividends when it comes to improving your online reputation.
3. Create a Strong Online Presence
Your online presence refers to all of the web platforms where your brand can be seen by consumers. The most important platforms for boosting your online presence are popular social media sites (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc.) and large review websites (Yelp, Yell, Google MyBusiness, TripAdvisor etc.).
The first step towards building a presence on these platforms is to create or improve your profile pages. Ensure that your details are correct, add images, and make your pages look more professional. You may also need to perform some search engine optimisation and general improvements to your website so it is also contributing effectively to your online presence.
4. Manage Customer Conversations
Engaging with customers in a positive way is a great way to improve your online reputation. That’s because every time you communicate with someone on a public online forum, potential customers will observe those interactions. They will be used to form an opinion of the business.
When you receive a positive review or comment, be sure to thank the customer and tell them that you have taken any feedback on board. You can also share this positive review on other platforms to highlight the success of your business.
You have two options when it comes to negative reviews. Either ignore them, or engage with the customer. For most businesses, engaging is the better option. Apologise to the customer when you were to blame for a bad experience they had and make a concerted effort to deal with the issue. This will show potential customers viewing the exchange how much you care about your customers and their experiences.
5. Make Reputation Building a Core Part Of Your Business
Reputation building takes time. It will involve engaging with customers, creating high-quality content, making a great website, establishing a strong online profile and much more.
It also requires excellent customer service — particularly in the real world. After all, the reviews and comments that form your online reputation often come from customers who visited your store in the real world. Keep a strong focus on customer service and your online reputation will grow in leaps and bounds.