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Online Reputation Management is an integral part of businesses today. People prefer online shopping more than ever now. In this scenario, maintaining a spotless business reputation and building a brand is paramount to your business and the success level. Most importantly for the local business, managing its online reputation includes monitoring, reviewing, and responding to what is said about your business online.

There is no doubt, if you are doing a business online, it is oblivious that you will be subjected to both good as well as bad ratings. We all strive for good ratings for our business, but let’s face it you have to be up against negative comments at some point of time. How you deal with both is going to have an impact on your success.

Monitoring your business’s online presence includes certain mechanisms to get alerted when anything is said about your business online. As you will find out, one bad review, or a negative blog comment about you, can ruin your brand’s reputation, and impact the sale of your product.

The first step to start with is to build your reputation is to get your business listed at the major reviewing sites such as Google, Yelp, Yahoo as well as Bing, and make sure you monitor them daily. Also make sure your business also have a presence on social networking giants like Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and all other social media sites.

The next part is to monitor the comments that you get on your page. Blogging will also help your business get recognition from people.

Reviewing to make your business better

When you receive these alerts, you can find out what is being said about your business online. You should know that every single alert doesn’t require a response from you. Blog regularly with rich content and you will get many loyal followers, make sure to participate in local blogs. Most of these don’t require any response from you. Just use your common sense and decide which reviews you should respond to.

Responding to reviews

All is well when people say good things about your business. There is absolutely no problem on responding to those good reviews. Just make sure you respond quickly to these good reviews and let them know you appreciate their opinion and value the fans. This will encourage them more to participate in word of mouth advertising for your business.

But the crucial part is to deal with the negative comments. There will be negative comments too. You cannot appease to everyone, there are going to be unsatisfied customers. In this case you need to be more careful. What you need is first place is to answer quickly with a personalized response. Just make sure you respond to their negative comments positively and solve their issues.

You can find instances when customers may not be right, but if you tell them they’re wrong, you will certainly lose their business. In such situation you need to be understanding and empathy without blaming the customer, and be apologetic about the less-than-ideal experience. If possible ask them for a second change and review about the final outcome.

Do not avoid negative reviews; respond to them as many potential customers read the reviews before making decisions. When a negative review remains unanswered it conveys that you don’t care about what people are saying about your business.

Responding to a negative review

If the customer is unsatisfied, don’t argue with them and explain briefly about what steps you have taken to make it right. If possible consider refunding that customer that will show you truly care about your customers and build a trust factor among your audience.

Again, don’t just post your review immediately, take a second opinion make sure that you don’t sound too defensive on your part. This will show that you are not confident and weak. Avoid argument or getting personal with your customers as far as possible, it is tempting, but it also makes you look unprofessional to say the least. Make your response brief and positive.

Online reputation management for a local business is becoming increasingly important as more and more businesses are reverting to Internet to do business. Invest in online reputation management for your business to have a proper system in place to handle both good and bad reviews of your business. This will be without a doubt, very crucial to your business’s success.

Thanks for your time here. If you have some different points, please feel free to use the comment section to share your thoughts.

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