Do You Know Your Reputation Online?
In today’s marketplace, online search and social media has an ever growing impact on how your customers view your business. According to Oracle, in 2012, 80% of global consumers researched products online every week. Sadly, as far as social media, perception, rather than fact, is often taken as truth when information is shared. While that is impossible to control, it makes it even more vital that the ‘good stories’ about your business are seen and heard.
Recent changes in how Google show business information online, mean that most of the time, your reputation reviews are prominent along with your business listing. This makes it very easy for consumers to view your rating and compare you with your competition. And if they find one bad review, you could lose their business.
Customer reviews are a major factor in almost every type of online marketing because reviews show up in Google maps, and your Google plus listing. They show up on Pay Per Click. They show up on website rankings, and organic rankings. They show up in local directories like Yelp and City Search and Bing and Yahoo, and in Yellow Pages. This means that it is near impossible for your business to hide from bad reviews.
According to a survey by the well-respected firm Nielsen on what forms of advertising people trust the most, 70% trust opinions based on online reviews.
More to the point, they trust consumer opinions posted online more than a newspaper editorial or article. That means that an article written about you and your business is not as trusted as much as an online review.
And the number one story is certainly your reputation. Without a good reputation, your business isn’t trusted. Buyers don’t trust your marketing or even third party stories about your business as much as they do reviews. Are you managing your online presence (reviews) to win trust and gain more customers?
Good reviews may help your Google rank. According to a study by Bizible.com in 2012, having five or more Google reviews was associated with an almost two position improvement in rank in local search results. The study also proved that not having any Google reviews on your Places page or having an average review score of 1, can actually hurt rankings.
This makes sense as Google are trying to display high quality results in search. Companies that have low ratings are obviously deemed poor quality, therefore Google will actually penalise these listings. That’s why it is important to have as many positive 5-star reviews as possible, not just in Google but anywhere where customers can leave reviews for your business, such as Yelp, Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare and more. And while it is true that Google can change their ranking algorithm at any time, the question must be asked: Are bad reviews hurting your Google ranking?
Reputation Marketing — the Most Important
It is clear to us that the evidence points to reputation marketing as being the most important marketing that you can do for your business. If you don’t get this right, any money you spend on marketing will likely be wasted. It will simply point people to your reviews – the good, the bad and the indifferent.
Of course, before you can fix anything, you need to get a complete picture of what you are dealing with. That’s why we’ve created leading-edge systems that enable us to discover a good ‘slice’ of what people are saying about you online. It will also show you what top directory sites feature information about your business, and whether or not you have claimed your listing. Enter your phone number below and pick your country to get your FREE Reputation Report with no obligation on your part.