Have you received a bad review on Google or online? Are you unsure on what to do next about it? It’s becoming ever more important to make sure you have a great reputation within the online world. One bad review can potentially lose your business customers, which means in the long run it could affect your whole business. Many businesses don’t feel that this is an important issue to combat and they are more focused purely on what money is coming into the business. In this article I will be discussing what Reputation Management is, and how you can help improve it whilst responding to bad reviews.
What is Reputation Management?
Reputation Management is how you manage your online business reputation. It is so important to make sure your business has a great reputation online. As a whole, a business’s reputation is what can make or break them. You want to make sure that you are doing everything within your power to make sure your business reputation remains at a very high standard. There are small steps you can take to make sure your reputation does not slip down. Maintaining a good reputation will also help the status of your business ‘brand’. By this I mean the more you look after your reputation and grow it positively, the more your business will grow into a trusted brand. Once people start seeing your business online and start seeing all these good reviews, you will soon see the benefits. Even dealing with the bad reviews in a good way, can in fact have a positive impact on your business.
When Do You Need To Manage Your Reputation?
You need to manage your reputation every single day of the year. The reason why you need to take so much time managing it is because if you allow one or two bad reviews to be left about your business and you do not take any action, before you know it, there are more. It only takes a few bad reviews to put buyers off completely. Everyone that searches a product or service online will look at reviews and see what experience other people have had with that business. If a new potential customer looks on a review website and sees that your business has 5 reviews and all 5 are bad then the chances of that new potential customer using your business are very slim.
How To Manage Bad Reviews & Your Reputation
There are many ways in which businesses manage bad reviews and most of them are not the correct way to go about it. You will hear of cases of businesses just totally not responding to bad reviews and just leaving them. You may have even heard of cases where the business then respond to a bad review by slating the person who has left it. As you can imagine this is not the right way to respond and manage bad reviews. There are so many review sites out there now that even the thought of trying to manage your reviews may cause you to panic. The first step that I recommend is to just type in your business name then and then put reviews after it in Google. This is a great way of finding out which review sites seem to be active about your business and the most important thing about doing this is you get to see a massive range of review sites and what customers are saying about you!
There are many review websites out there where you first need to create a business profile so that people then can find your business and leave a review. This would mean that you should receive an email notification through saying that someone has left a review about your business. This means you would already have a good idea of what reviews have been left about your business.
The next step I would take would be to then see what customers are saying and read every single review you can find. Once you find and read reviews you can now start and do the most important step! The most important step and best way to manage bad reviews is to respond to every review. If you receive a bad review then address them with a response. You need to make sure you address every point they make with an answer which not only explains their questions but also gives them confidence in your business. If you are a business owner who responds to the bad reviews then put some contact information where the person can contact you directly with their problem or issue. This would not only give the person writing the bad review confidence in your business but it would also mean that other people who see that review then see that as a business you are trying to tackle this problem.
Another great thing to do is encourage all your customers to give their feedback on your review websites. You would certainly want to aim to do this to all customers you know will give you positive feedback. This means not only are you gaining positive feedback but if you do receive bad reviews your review page will get flooded with positive reviews, meaning people are less likely to take much notice of the bad reviews.
One of the biggest places you want your customers to leave reviews is on your Google Local page. This is a massive one because Google Local is something Google takes into account when displaying local searched terms. The more reviews on your page and the more activity Google sees on it the better it will be and look. Here is a link to another article which explains ‘How To Get Reviews On Your Google Local Page’.
The overall point I want to get across is no matter how busy you get within a normal working week you need to make sure as a business, you are putting time aside in order to be able to handle your online reputation and to help build this. You can start very small and just start searching your business reviews once every two weeks. Then as you get more experienced in finding and responding to reviews you can move it to once a week. Before you know it you will get into a regular routine of this and it will become part of your everyday working routine. You don’t need to spend full days doing this but an hour will be a good place to start. You need to make sure as a business you understand the overall impact reputation will have on your business and the better your reputation, the more business you will find coming your way! Remember to always act and not react to bad reviews!
Article by: Adam Jones