Ways to positively Impact Your Business Reputation Online
The importance of maintaining a strong business reputation is obvious to most business owners and members of management. However, implementing real change to your business reputation is more challenging than simply understanding the risks of a poor reputation. This article will highlight some changes that you can implement to improve your business reputation.
The first step that a company should take is to have a person dedicated to reviewing your online reputation. The review process can be as simple as performing a quick search of your business in a search engine and finding out what comments are present on the company when this is done. Many companies also task someone to read through the major review websites like Yelp or TripAdvisor and see what others are saying about the company and their products. In addition, it may be worthwhile to also have an employee check the major industry blogs and message boards in order to see what those closest to the industry are saying about your company.
Once you have a firm understanding of what a customers’ views on your company are you can start to work on improving it. Sometimes there is a product or process within the company that can be improved on in order to better satisfy your customers. Over a longer period of time, implementing positive changes to your business can help to make your customer base happy. Well, satisfied customers will tend, over time, to make your reputation better through word of mouth. Other times, more immediate change can be engineered.
Start by taking an active web presence and promoting interactions with your customers. Many customers want to have an option for reaching out to your company and provide them with several different ways to do so. By having open communication channels open between customers and your company you can handle complaints directly and in private before they result in negative commentary online which can further damage your online reputation. Having an active social media account that customers feel comfortable reaching out through can be a great way to positively interact with your clients. Having an active presence on a message board on your website or on a third-party website can be another option for interacting with your customers in an effective way. Further, be sure to respond quickly and with great concern to your customers making them feel important when you do so. Your business wouldn’t exist without your customers, after all.
Next, find how and if you want to respond to comments from others on your business. Some companies will simply ignore negative reviews and try to make sure that the good outweighs the bad. Others will respond in professional ways to negative reviews and offer ways to remedy the problems that the customer experienced. Either way, a business should make sure that they are professional in their dealings with customers and that they don’t take the poor commentary too personal. In addition, be aware that you will never be able to satisfy all clients and customers and that most people realize this. Simply try to make sure the good outweighs the bad online.
Finally, consider obtaining outside help if needed by retaining a third party reputation management firm. These firms are experienced in assessing, repairing, and monitoring your online business reputation and can enact quick and significant change to your online business reputation.