Online Reputation Management: How It Can Boost Your SEO
By: Thomas B. Varghese
Updated On: March 10, 2023
Every business owner cares about their online presence and wants excellent search visibility.
This helps the business to build an awesome reputation on review websites as well as social media platforms.
Maintaining a positive online reputation is not an option anymore. Successful search engine optimization (SEO) as well as online reputation management (ORM) companies generally help the clients to achieve good results by proactively coordinating the websites, content as well as the search engine results pages (SERPs).
This article will talk about how to do online reputation management and how ORM can impact the search rankings.
What is Online Reputation Management (ORM)?
ORM is about being aware and controlling the public conversations that users have about the business online and managing the business profile on different channels. The main goal that the business should have is an overall positive sentiment from the people that have worked with you before.
Social comments and comments from existing customers can have an important role in getting more business. According to research done by Critical Research in 2017, 91% of the customers take further action on a product or service as a result of reading positive reviews about a business. Hence, it can be valuable to know what people are saying about you.
Advantages of Online Reputation Management
ORM has become an important and effective tactic for exposing the business in the online world. To understand it better, various online reputation management benefits have been enumerated below:
Develops credibility among people:
An ORM strategy is a wise approach to build trust between a business and the customers. The positive feedback and reviews on online platforms ensure brand credibility. ORM tends to give complete information about a product or service. This helps people to easily connect with the business. Thus, ORM helps in developing reliability in the customers for a business.
Helps in abolishing negative publicity:
Having negative reviews and comments can hurt the reputation of a business. This is one reason that the ranking of a website might decline in the search engines. For eradicating such negative reviews and comments, you can hire an online reputation management firm for looking after such an issue. These forms can create positive links that help in removing the negative advertisements from top SERPs.
The best part of hiring an ORM service for your business is that this can be budget-friendly. One does not need to spend a huge amount of money on PR or advertising activities.
High online visibility:
An ORM helps in boosting the visibility of a website in search engines naturally. It helps in creating positive and authentic reviews on different online platforms. This also helps in getting more customers.
Enhances transparency and customer engagement:
A website overview in the search engine tells whether the website is reliable and if it can grab the attention of the customer or not. It also maintains transparency about the products or services of a business.
Improves the search engine rankings:
If a positive review about a business goes viral on the internet, it tends to get recognition from the customers. Having positive online recommendations would improve the search engine rankings of your website naturally.
Online Reputation Management Strategies
No one can hurt the reputation of your business as much as you can. Thus, you can consider the below online reputation management SEO strategies to proactively manage the online reputation of your business.
Broaden the online presence of the business
Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are generally considered the best social media platforms. However, in case you run a business, many other social websites can expand your digital footprint. It is important to find out which of the social media platforms are used frequently by your target customers. This will help you in establishing your online presence on the media platform where your customers usually visit.
B2B businesses can benefit from LinkedIn, where one can make professional connections with other businesses. On the other hand, B2C industries can consider displaying their products on visual platforms such as Pinterest. The businesses that are targeting the younger population have to remain up to date with new and emerging social platforms like Snapchat. Expanding the business reach to social media would allow the business to connect with the target audience and help in keeping control of the search results associated with the business.
Keep a check on social media accounts
It is not enough to just have multiple social media accounts for the business. One also needs to manage the online reputation of the business. The social media accounts need to be regularly maintained to garner an organic following. Filling the social media feeds with interesting and relevant content helps in increasing influence, boosting the engagement level as well as helps you interact with existing and potential customers.
In case you do not keep the social media accounts active or engaging, you might make them too weak to outrank any negative postings or reviews about the business.
Enhance the online visibility of products or brands
In case a business owns brands or products that have name recognition outside the business name, it becomes all the more important to build an online presence as well as social profiles. You can start by developing websites, social media accounts as well as other forms of content that the customers might search for. In case you neglect to claim the ownership of your additional brands or products, you would not be able to gain control over their online usage.
Secure the key employees
Developing a powerful social media presence for the key employees of the business is a good way of managing the business’s online reputation. It can become a part of your employee onboarding process where you show the way you build trust with them.
Keeping a low profile on social media platforms makes it easier for others to hurt your reputation. It could also tarnish the online reputation of the business. In case the identity of a business is associated with its executives, whether directly or indirectly, it is essential to create a solid online reputation management strategy to ensure ongoing success.
Create and respond to online reviews
An effective way to build up the online reputation of a business is to encourage happy customers and clients to write online reviews for your business. The 2018 Local Consumer Review Survey states that 86% of the users tend to read online reviews about a business prior to making a purchase. You can thus ask your customers to review your business on Facebook, Google My Business or Yelp as this will help in generating a positive online reputation.
Additionally, online reputation management also includes responding to negative reviews about the company. You should apologize for the bad customer experience and come up with a solution immediately. Many reviewers tend to update the original feedback after their concerns are addressed with a resolution.
Update your blog regularly
Another effective strategy to maintain a reputation is through blogging. Firstly, it allows one to indicate expertise in the field. Secondly, it also provides the opportunity to gain loyal followers. Also, blogging provides a ranking boost to the local SEO and helps in creating content for sharing further across different social media platforms.
Pay attention to the customers
While responding to any negative feedback from the customers, one should consider validity to the comments that are made, especially if one receives frequent negative feedback about a particular concern. You should not disregard online complaints; instead, you should make sure that you address such concerns professionally while improving the business operations.
Businesses should treat their customers with respect and convey the message that you value their feedback. The way you respond online can help in driving existing as well as potential customers towards or away from your website.
Make genuine restorations
Although human error is an inevitable part of life, it can become detrimental to the business in case you do not handle it efficiently and quickly. In case the company makes a mistake, you should own it up and apologize to the affected customers. Make a sincere apology and offer unconditional amends. This can work wonders while diffusing a situation or repairing a professional relationship.
Stay away from online arguments
Engaging in online arguments comes across as unprofessional. In case you react to a criticism emotionally, you might end up doing or saying something that can tarnish your online reputation. One great way to avoid this is by moving the public online argument offline to fix the problem.
Always stay professional to win more customers rather than being always right in an online argument. In case you find the business being pulled to a digital dispute, you should try to step away till you make a professional strategy to address the dispute.
Try investing in online reputation management
It requires time, money, and efforts to establish your online reputation. Most small businesses tend to neglect to manage their online reputation proactively until there arises a specific problem. Today, online reputation management has become an essential part of a digital marketing strategy.
In case you do not know how to manage the business’s online reputation, it might be frustrating and time-consuming to do it yourself. Properly managing the online reputation of a business is worth the investment. In case you don’t have time or are not sure where to start, you can always avail the services of an ORM firm.
How Online Reputation Management Can Help SEO?
ORM can help in boosting the SEO ranking of a website in several ways. SEO reputation management can help in the following ways:
Listings help in establishing an online presence
Provide a good experience to the users ensures that they come back time and again. Search engines tend to cross-check the information about a business with its listings across the web for making sure that a website is trustworthy and is giving out the right information. Thus, one should ensure that the email addresses, phone number, postal addresses, map pointers, as well as the opening times of the business are correct across all online listings.
Ensure positive user-generated content
Although individual reviews might not give the same boost to your website as another type of content formats such as blogs or videos; however, ensuring positive reviews on trusted sites such as Yelp or Trustpilot can your website SEO in a similar way. Building a business profile with high-quality reviews can help you in gaining fresh, genuine, and relevant content for the business. This can be through neutral third parties or trustworthy review websites. Such valuable content gives the search engines enough contextual information about the business.
Locate New Long-Tail Keywords
Have an in-depth look at the language being used by your customers. Familiarizing your business with your customers’ lingo can turn out to be highly powerful and insightful. These can turn out to be a good source of keyword inspiration. Customer reviews help in providing several useful long-tail keywords that can be used to optimize your website.
Acts as social proof
Most search engines tend to rank the websites with positive reviews higher than the websites which have poor or non-existent online ratings. Take, for example, Google tends to look at the reviews from Google My Business platform as well as from trusted partners such as Yelp, Facebook, etc for establishing the social standing of a business.
Boosts the “Local 3-Pack” presence
When a user searches for a business online, they tend to come across “local 3-pack”. These results are shown with the help of a small map, which indicates the location as well as contact details of the best three suitable results. In case your business is not registered with Google My Business, it is advisable to do so and help the business in ranking higher on Google.
In case you are new to online reputation management, it can be daunting to open yourself to reviews or feedback. However, to enhance the customer experience, it is important to invest in ORM and reap its benefits.