Research shows that a brand’s reputation accounts for 63% of its market value, making it a critical factor in business success. Small and medium-sized enterprises spend up to $7000 annually on proactive online reputation management (ORM) to avoid a reputation crisis. While a proactive ORM policy can reduce the risk of crises, it’s not foolproof. Therefore, it’s crucial to have a reactive ORM program in place to mitigate damages and maintain a good SERP ranking in the event of a reputation crisis.
The Relationship between ORM and SEO
Your search engine ranking is directly linked to your brand’s digital reputation. For example, if negative publicity concerning your business remains unresolved, the search engine results may show negative reviews or articles to clients in their searches.
After seeing your brand in an unpleasant light, most customers may abandon your services and shift to competitors.
Your brand’s digital reputation directly impacts your search engine ranking. Negative publicity left unresolved can result in search engine results displaying negative reviews or articles about your business, potentially causing customers to turn to competitors.
Research shows that one negative article can lead to a customer loss of up to 22%, while three negative articles in the search query can increase that loss to 59.2%. A drop in website traffic can also further decrease your ranking. To make sure your search engine ranking is not affected by a reputation crisis, you can implement techniques used by professional SEO services to restore your digital reputation.
What Is a Reputation Crisis?
A reputation crisis can occur when situations arise that can significantly damage a company’s reputation, such as a negative customer review posted on online forums. However, the extent of the damage caused by the crisis depends on its underlying cause. For instance, a negative review may lead to missing out on new customers, but an insensitive marketing campaign can damage the relationship with existing and prospective customers. Considering the consequences, it’s essential to deal with a reputation crisis as soon as possible. If your business is facing this issue, the first thing you need to do is conduct an audit of your online presence.
How to Conduct an Audit of Your Online Presence
The online presence audit evaluates your brand’s website and social media platforms to check whether they are performing up to the industry benchmarks. You can also assess the result of your ORM strategies to ensure they deliver the intended results.
When auditing your online presence, make sure to focus on the following areas:
- Website content and SEO (off-page and on-page)
- Marketing campaigns
- Local Directories
- Review sites
- GMB (Google My Business) listing
- Social media profiles
- Online Reputation
Performing an SEO audit is a crucial step in managing your online reputation. Firstly, you need to thoroughly analyze your website to ensure it is optimized for search engines. This involves assessing elements, such as meta tags, header tags, page speed, and mobile responsiveness.
Next, you need to examine your social media profiles and ensure they are complete, consistent, and engaging for your audience. Additionally, you should conduct a backlink analysis to ensure your website has high-quality backlinks from reputable sources.
Lastly, you can use monitoring tools to track your online reputation and catch any negative mentions before they escalate into a crisis. By conducting regular SEO audits, you can identify areas for improvement in your online presence and take necessary steps to protect and enhance your brand’s reputation.
While it may be impossible to alter the online reviews you receive, it’s still crucial to audit them to gain insight into how users perceive your business. If you’re consistently receiving negative reviews, make an effort to address the underlying issues and improve your services.
Don’t just limit your interactions to unhappy customers – take the time to leave comments on positive reviews as well. This shows your appreciation and encourages customers to share their positive experiences, leading to a better overall reputation for your business.
Web Traffic Auditing
Conducting a web traffic audit is crucial for understanding your main traffic sources and channels, enabling you to create targeted campaigns for these platforms. You can leverage tools like Google Analytics and Search Console to gain insight into your website’s performance. By identifying the channels driving the most traffic to your website, you can optimize your marketing efforts for maximum impact and allocate resources effectively.
Online Reputation Auditing
To establish a positive online reputation and outperform your competitors, conducting an online reputation audit is crucial. It’s not enough to rely on Google Search Engine alone, so be sure to use reputation monitoring tools to evaluate your brand’s online presence.
These tools can help you monitor your brand’s reputation across various platforms, including social media, news sites, and online forums. Moreover, you can track customer feedback and sentiment, enabling you to identify areas of improvement and provide prompt responses to negative reviews or comments.
How to Improve Your Brand’s Search Ranking After a Crisis?
Follow these tips to revamp your company’s image in the digital space and improve your search engine ranking.
Use Reverse SEO
Reverse SEO is a combination of tactics that are implemented to lower the SEO ranking of a specific webpage or post. Since you are not allowed to remove other people’s posts from the internet, reverse SEO can help you suppress negative information about your company by optimizing positive content.
You can also combine reverse SEO with content marketing and ORM techniques to get better results. For example:
- Publish Positive Content: Create blog posts about your achievements to show your company’s standing in the market. This will also repress any negative things circulating about you on the internet.
- Perform SEO: Implement search engine optimization techniques on new and existing content to push down unwanted posts/comments.
- Generate New Profiles: Create profiles for review sites and social media platforms you don’t have an account. This will help you increase your brand reach.
Publish Brand Positive Content
Content is one of the creative ways to raise awareness about your business and influence readers’ perceptions. Well-written content showcases your company’s values and industry knowledge and informs customers about your products.
In addition to helping you share brand values, user-friendly content is crucial in developing a good SEO ranking. Content that engages customers is easy to read, full of information, and SEO-optimized to increase your chances of higher ranking.
When developing a content marketing strategy, make sure to focus on the points mentioned below:
- High-Quality Content: This technique ensures your customers and leads learn something new from your site and use you as a primary source of information.
- Industry Relevant Keywords: Figure out your target audience’s pain points to include relevant keywords in your content.
- Content Calendar: Combine content marketing with community management techniques and stay connected with your audience by publishing content regularly. Instead of planning content ideas at the last minute, create a content calendar to keep everything on track.
Data shows 70% of online shoppers read at least six reviews before making a buying decision. Therefore, a big portion of your business success is associated with reviews and feedback. When people share their personal experiences with your brand on social media, it helps other customers decide whether your products or services
Positive reviews can significantly impact a business’s profitability, while negative reviews can have an adverse effect. To minimize the damage caused by negative feedback, it is essential to respond to the comments promptly.
Publish Press Releases
A press release is a short and compelling story about your brand that is published on highly reputed news sites. By publishing press releases, you can call attention to your brand’s story and values. You can show your audience new and unique things offered by your company.
Press releases are also effective in managing a reputation crisis, as they allow you to share your perspective with the audience. As a result, you can control and minimize the coverage of negative media.
Influencer marketing involves collaborating with industry experts, such as celebrities and social media influencers, to expand your brand exposure and attract new customers. This marketing technique can also help restore your digital reputation. Having a well-known personality promote your products or services shows that your brand is trustworthy and worth investing in. This can positively impact your reputation.
Engage with Your Customers on Social Media
Having good social media engagement allows you to build a stronger relationship with your customers. This technique gives you multiple opportunities to connect with customers on a personal level. As a result, you strengthen brand loyalty and gain recommendations that ultimately increase your sales.
Keep Monitoring Online Mentions
Monitoring your brand’s online mentions offers multiple advantages, such as:
- Create better interactions with followers
- Transform loyal customers into brand ambassadors
- Identify reputation crisis to launch recovery programs
- Solve queries of unhappy customers to change their perspective about your brand
- Measure the results of your marketing campaigns
You can keep an eye on your online mentions with the help of brand monitoring tools like Google Alerts.
Measure the Success of your Reputation Management Strategies
Reputation management strategies are responsible for increasing brand awareness and customer engagement, which leads to better profits and customer loyalty. Therefore, it is important to measure whether your reputation repair strategies are creating desired effects. Once you have access to this data, you can make the required changes to ensure your ORM strategies perform up to your expectations.
Work on Building Positive Relationships with Your Customers
Positive customer relationships are a key element for running a successful business. When customer relationship is based on trust and communication, it boosts customer retention and purchase repeat rate. This is because buyers believe that you are an authentic brand, making it easier for them to invest in your products or services.
You can improve your customer relationships by following these tips:
- Offer excellent customer service to timely resolve issues and queries
- Encourage positive feedback from satisfied customers to gain a positive online reputation
- Showcase positive feedback (social proofing) to show you are trusted by a large audience
Your company’s online reputation has a great impact on your search engine ranking. Therefore, you need to use online reputation management strategies to ensure your customer have a positive image of your brand, especially after a crisis.
If your efforts are not creating desired results, use online reputation management services to build brand credibility and improve SEO ranking.
How Long Does It Take to Recover from A Reputation Crisis?
Rebuilding a brand’s online reputation takes time, as you need to shift Google’s narrative by balancing the positive content with the negative.
What Are Some Common Mistakes to Avoid During Reputation Repair?
Some of the common mistakes you must avoid during reputation repair are:
- Not monitoring brand mentions and review sites
- Not responding to positive reviews
- Not updating your profile information and business listings
- Not encouraging reviews from satisfied customers
How Can Online Reputation Management Help Improve Search Engine Rankings?
A strong online reputation is an indication of high customer recognition. When your customers frequently discuss your brand on social media and visit your website, search engines take notice of this activity and improve your SERP ranking. This increased visibility attracts more potential customers to your business. Therefore, investing in building a positive online reputation can have a significant impact on the success of your business.