Once in a while, someone will make a positive or a negative comment about your business online. Unhappy customers are especially known to vent their frustrations online for anyone who cares to listen. There are also unethical competitors who will say all kinds of negative things to discredit your business. This means that you need to act fast to salvage the reputation of your business or brand.
Here are some tips which will help you manage your business’ online reputation.
1. Build an optimized site
When anyone searches for your business name, your site should appear as the first result. When it comes to optimizing your site, start by using your business name as the domain name. Make sure you include other important keywords such as city, state and address in your metatags and web copy. In addition, find ways of getting other reputable sites to link back to yours. Such backlinks will enhance your rankings in search engines.
2. Establish a social media presence
It would be wise to establish a social media presence on leading networks such as Twitter and Facebook. Check your Facebook business page wall and Twitter profile often to keep track of the conversations going on about your business. If you come across any negative comment, reply immediately in a courteous way. Ask the person to share their email contacts so as to facilitate further follow up. Once the problem has been sorted out, you can then request the complainer to delete the initial comment.
3. Create search alerts
A search alert will enable you to spot any negative comment posted online before many people have read it. You should therefore consider creating search alerts for your own name, your business name, as well as other words related to your business on Google Alerts. In addition, you can also keep track of what people are saying about your business on Twitter using Twilert. Whenever you come across an unfavorable comment about your business on a site, get in touch with the site’s owner and ask them to remove it.
4. Monitor consumer review sites
Though alerts are beneficial, Google cannot detect everything. Therefore, it would be advisable to look out for leading consumer sites such as TripAdvisor and Yelp for reviews on your business. Anytime someone gives a compliment, take time to appreciate it. Similarly, when you get an unfavorable review, offer a public apology if the claims are valid. However, if the review appears malicious, ask the owner of the site to remove it.
5. When push comes to shove, take legal action
If someone makes totally false and damaging allegations about your business online, you may need to take legal action against them. However, before engaging a lawyer, give the commenter a chance to remove the offensive content. If they decline, go ahead and take them to court.