This does affect your online reputation, however, and you have to make sure that you respond to it properly. If someone spots negative information about you, they are 80% less likely to come to you with your business. This demonstrates the importance of online reputation repair. So what can you do?
What Is the Source?
First, you have to find out where the negative information is coming from. You can use social media and search engines for this, simply by entering your name. Do also look for any social mentions, however. Now, you’re ready to get started to repair your reputation, for which you have a few options.
- The DIY Method
Before a customer will trust you, 70% of them will need to see a minimum of six positive reviews. So, anything negative has to be removed. You can choose to physically delete it, for instance if it is on your own blog, and then actually remove the URL. This won’t be appreciated, however, and there is a chance the reviewer will come back. If the comment isn’t on someone else’s site, you can ask them to remove it. It is unlikely that they will do this.
What is a better option is to respond to the negative comments. Do so in a positive, professional manner. Make sure you don’t become emotive, in other words. Apologize for their bad experience, even if it isn’t your fault, and put forward ideas for improvement.
Next, make sure you make it harder to find the bad comments by posting lots of high quality content yourself. Add a new blog post to your site, comment on a few forums, post some social updates and so on. This means that, when people search for you, they are more likely to find those things, rather than the negative comments.
- Hire a Professional
The very best thing to do is to hire a professional to manage your reputation. In fact, you should consider working with these before you spot any negative reviews. Reputation management and search engine optimization go hand in hand so, as soon as you hire the company, they will start to get you hire rankings in the search engines. They will also monitor the internet for any negative reviews about you, and address these in professional, appropriate manners straight away. Essentially, it means that you can sit back and let them deal with it.
However, make sure that the company you hire truly is professional and that they know what they are doing. Because online reputation management is now so popular, a lot of companies are marketing themselves as “experts” when they actually have no idea about what they are doing.
Whether you choose option 1 or option 2, what matters most is that you do something. Ignoring negative reviews is never an option, as it will destroy your business.