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The ultimate guide for online reputation management of SMBs

Online reputation management for SMBs

Any business, big or small, is all about catering to the needs of the customers.

What people say about a business online has long-term implications for the brand.

 Customers are hopping onto sites like Yelp, Google Reviews, Better Business Bureau before engaging directly with the brands.

Since SMBs also look out for their customers, they are dedicating time and resources for online reputation monitoring.

Suppose, you own an auto repair shop in New York. Things are going well in business terms but you aren’t able to accelerate the growth of your business. Word of mouth marketing is not bringing up helping much and you don’t have the money to advertise your services on a local TV or radio.

You’ve heard much about digital marketing services, but you haven’t figured out how it can help your achieve your business targets. To get a clear idea, do a simple Google search of the best auto repair centers in New York.

top three auto repair centers

This is the list of top three auto repair centers, also your toughest competitors. They have made it easy for people to look for their services even without knowing their business name. A lot of customers look at these ratings and trust their services, but unfortunately, that’s not the case with your business.

Don’t worry!

With online reputation management services, you can malr platforms like Google, Yelp BBB, Facebook, etc., to become your revenue generators.

What is Online Reputation Management?

Online reputation management is a set of practices that improve a customer’s perspective about your business. While large corporations designate a specific department for this, SMBs can also benefit from it. It involves two things:

  1. Identifying all the online resources that customers might use to look for similar services like your business.
  2. Bringing your business into a customer’s sight by using online platforms.

Your online presence should be such that customers can find all sorts of information about your business. For example, the NYC Auto repair- State Inspection. A visitor can look for reviews, contact them, and locate their address by just searching their name.

NYC Auto repair State Inspection

Online Reputation Management Solutions for Small Businesses

Unlike the large businesses who know social media monitoring and take up investigations for bad reviews, small businesses cannot indulge in such hefty online reputation management services.

Let’s learn about the best ways SMBs can indulge in online reputation monitoring.

Search Engine Optimization:

When a user searches for services related to your business, you want to own the top position. This comprises of all the online channels you hold. It includes your website and your social media profiles.

A website is of fundamental existence to your business. Just like your business has a physical store, a website is like an online store. Getting your website on the top of SERPs means, you’ll have to practice search engine optimization.

SEO will help in optimizing your website and reflect it as a result, on Google.

First, you’ll have to get your website indexed by search engine giant.

Indexing means that Google has recognized your website and stored it in its digital library. So, verify your URL using Google Search Console by logging in to the Google account associated with your business.

In case, your website is not indexed, you need to click on Request Indexing. Once you’ve submitted your request, your website will be indexed in a day or two.

Remember, for small businesses, getting their website indexed is the most important thing.

Google My Business

Do you remember the screenshot where the top auto repair shops in New York were listed?

Well, this is simply because all SMBs are using Google My Business to allow potential customers to connect with them, look through their services in the Google Search results, and show their location on Google Maps.

Getting started with Google My Business is very easy. Head to their website and start entering your businesses’ information. However, be careful to fill in every detail since that will help you to get the most out of Google My Business account. Getting your business on Google My Business alleviates your online reputation.

Always provide information such as:

  • Hours of operation
  • Products/services you offer
  • Description of your business
  • Its category
  • Attributes of your business
  • Photos and videos entailing the physical aspect of your business
  • A link to book an appointment
  • Contact information
  • Link to all your social media handles
Google My Business account of NYC Auto Repair

For example, the above shows Google My Business account of NYC Auto Repair. It lists all the information that’ll come handy for customers looking for such services.

Online Reviews

Now, that you have a GMB account and a website, let’s proceed to the next segment, online reviews.

Suppose, you wanted to get a haircut. Now, you are new in the city so you ask your friends if they know about a good salon. They suggest you one, and you head over to that place.

So, what you did here was trusting someone else’s recommendation. People always listen to what others have to say, especially when it comes to services and products.

Similarly, online reviews are like personal recommendations. Users looking for such services, and trust what a customer has said about a particular business in a similar segment.

So, no matter what, if you have good reviews about your services online, you’ll achieve leverage over the others.

Google reviews

One of the most important aspects of online reputation management is encouraging your customers to post a review about you. 85% of consumers trust online reviews as traditional suggestions. So, if you score a positive review from a customer, your GMB profile will become a massive generator of online traffic.

Good, bad, or mediocre; online reviews form a key part of reputation management. Nearly, one-third of customers will judge you according to customer reviews.

Get Your Social Handles Organized

Since you are into dealing directly with customers, be it other businesses or people, some channels will hold prominent importance than the others.

Facebook and Facebook Messenger is one of the most important platforms. As per a survey, 52% of people discovered new businesses on Facebook. It poses an incredible opportunity for brands to grow their customer base.

Create your business page on Facebook with name, category, address, phone number, and profile picture/logo. Add at least 2 photos, one of which will serve as the cover photo for your Facebook page.

This is how a Facebook business page looks like!

Always, add a Call Now button to your Facebook page. A lot of businesses are discovered using Facebook and Facebook Messenger.

Online Reputation Management in a Nutshell

Managing online reputation is important for every business, small or large.

A positive digital presence will help you garner customer’s attention and improve your reputation online.

Try the above tips for online reputation management and boost your sales and revenue portion.

Rohit Yadav
Rohit Yadav
Rohit Yadav is a Digital Marketing Professional & Blogger, writing on all aspects of the technology. With wide and deep experience of covering all matters related to Technology, App Development, Cloud, software development outsourcing, SEO outsourcing, Artificial Intelligence, and Digital Marketing. He wants to be at the forefront of technology, whether it is already applied in real life or still in the R & D lab.

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