In this 5-minute read:
- Provide a memorable customer experience
- Improve your website
- Get regular online reviews (and respond to them)
- Engage in local SEO strategies
- Get active on social media
- Use tools to track and manage your online reputation
Your online reputation is a huge part of your brand’s identity and a proven marketing tool in this digital age. Online interactions are often the first impression a customer has of your business.
What are you doing to manage your online reputation? Are you watching your online reviews? Keeping up with your competitors?
When a customer leaves a negative review, do you have a strategy in place to handle that?
There are several ways to improve your online reputation, and we’ll show you a few proven methods.
“Delight” your customers and provide a memorable experience
The first step to ensuring your business has a good online reputation is to provide a great customer experience. Without customer satisfaction, your business won’t succeed and your online reputation won’t be great either.
However, the sad truth of it is, unless you go above and beyond to delight your customers, they will usually not leave you a review or mention you to their friends. Just providing “good” customer service isn’t enough. You need to find ways to truly make their visit exceptional.
There are several things that you can do to enhance your online reputation independent of your customers, but genuine words of recommendation from your customers, like testimonials and reviews, add an real layer of credibility to your business.
Beyond reviews, customers can help spread the word about your business in other online spaces. When you have customers that are delighted with your offerings, they are going to tell others about it.
Social media is a powerful tool that almost all of your customers use every day. When their friends post on Facebook that they are looking for a new hairstylist, auto mechanic, or other product or service, your customers that enjoy their experience with you will recommend you in the comments.
These mentions of your business can have a huge impact on your online reputation by helping spread brand awareness and trust.
Improve your website function, layout, and performance
Your online reputation won’t take you very far if you don’t have a good website. As web design trends change and new technologies emerge, it’s important to make sure your website is improving and adapting with these trends.
That’s not to say that you need to implement every little trend or software that is new and interesting, but you should make sure you take the time to review your website on a regular basis and improve it.
Review the content you have on your website to make sure it is still relevant. Remove any outdated content like broken links or old discounts, events, or employees.
A modern and attractive website with relevant content gives your business more credibility and increases conversion rates, especially if you are running paid advertisements that direct more traffic to your website.
- Are you losing customers and sales because of broken website links?
- Why every small business still needs a website
- 5 signs your website is behind the times
Work to get more online reviews (and respond to them)
We’ve touched on this briefly, but online reviews are imperative to improving your online reputation. It’s not enough to get a few good reviews one time or any time you get a bad review. You need to be continually working to get more reviews for your company.
Womply’s data shows that businesses that get more than the average number of reviews earn 54% more revenue.
Every small business should implement some kind of review management strategy to help them get more online reviews and monitor any new reviews that do come in.
Some ways to get more online reviews:
- “Delight” your customers (see above)
- Ask your customers to leave you a review
- Post links to your Yelp, Google, Facebook, or other review channels on your website
- Put up approved signage in your store or office
- Remind customers with review management software
When you get a new review, always respond to it. Whether the review is good, bad, or neutral, every review deserves a response. Not only does this show potential customers that you are engaged and responsive, but it’s also a good signal for Google, and improves local SEO.
Still not convinced? Businesses that regularly reply to their reviews earn up to 49% more revenue compared to those that don’t respond to any. So get on that.
Learn more: How to get more reviews
Engage in local SEO strategies
How visible your business is online largely impacts your online reputation. If a potential customer hears of your business, either from you or someone else, but they can’t find you online, that doesn’t bode well.
You’ll lose credibility with them and they might just go somewhere else.
SEO (search engine optimization) will help your business show up on Google and other search engines for your business name and your offerings. This is a long-term strategy and may not provide immediate results, but the impact it has down the road will more than pay for itself.
A few ways to start getting a boost on your SEO:
- Provide well-written and engaging content about your company and offerings on your website and blog
- Ensure that your website has a good user experience (mobile-friendly, easy to navigate, all links work, proper keywords and H1/H2 tags, etc. See links above)
- Add your business to free online business listings, including Google My Business, Yelp, and Facebook
- Work to get other websites and news outlets to link back to yours, and other PR methods for small businesses
Check out our guide: Local SEO: 15 free tips for better search rankings
Get active on social media
Having a social media profile for your business is one thing, but actually getting active on that profile and taking advantage of its various capabilities will take your company much further.
Part of improving your online reputation is using the tools that you already have at your disposal. And social media channels are huge!
How many of your customers are on Facebook or Instagram every single day?
Think of the impact your business could have if it was reaching your customers and potential customers on their social media feeds multiple times each week.
Social media can help increase your brand awareness and acquire more leads and, ultimately, customers.
Create a social media strategy for your business to improve your online reputation.
Want to learn more? Check out our articles:
- The complete guide to Facebook marketing for small businesses
- Why every local business should be on Instagram
- How to promote tweets on Twitter for small business
- Which social media site matters most for small business?
- The best types of social media posts for small businesses
Use tools to track your online reputation
You can’t be in multiple places at once, and thus, you can’t possibly find every reference of your own brand on the internet, at least not on your own.
There are several tools that you can find to help you monitor your online reputation, from how many times your brand has been mentioned to notifications any time you get a new review.
Womply’s reputation management software is a great resource for review tracking. You can read and respond to all of your reviews on multiple review sites right from Womply dashboard, and you’ll receive alerts whenever a new review comes in. Plus, this solution allows you to automatically reply to reviews with customizable responses if you so choose.
Learn more, plus get free reputation monitoring and customer insights when you sign up for Womply Free!