Business reputation scores matter more than you realize. “Local reputation management is absolutely key in attracting new customers,” noted Steven Lockhart of Local Search Partners, a California-based local search marketing company. “It is not an overstatement to say success or failure depends on reputation. For one client, a medical provider, we were able to drive enough new clients to them to go from seeing 80 patients a day to over 500 patients per day in less than a year. Growing revenue from $2 Million/year to nearly $10 Million/year.”
Common questions we are asked are:
- How do we create a reputation?
- How does our reputation get ruined?
- How do we keep our reputation good?
- How do we change our reputation?
Changing your local business’s reputation is difficult, especially when the personality of the business doesn’t change. Some reputations are well-earned by providing poor customer interactions and confrontational engagement. However, if you are legitimately providing a good service or great products and are doing it with positivity, we can definitely change and reflect this for you. Generating positive experiences is your job, our job is to make sure those experiences translate into positive reviews.
Over 97% (nearly 100%) of potential customers look online for local businesses. And, the first thing they notice is reviews. They form an immediate idea of the reputation of the company they will potentially do business with. Having a low reputation score can instantly turn off a customer from doing business with you, just as a business with many high reviews, which express the experience can do wonders to generate more business.
Reviews are trusted …trust and reputation go together like peanut butter and jelly. In fact, people trust online reviews as much as they trust a recommendation from a close friend. And, 70% of customers consider reviews to be an important part of their purchase decision.
How customers view your reputati
Local reputation management’s effect on your business
A potential customer searches for a business, maybe directly they’ll search your business. What they see in the results shapes their idea of your company. Here is why it is important (from Moz Research)…
- A business loses 21.9% of its customers with one negative article on the first page of the search results
- A business loses 44% of its customers with two negative articles on the first page of the search results
- A business loses 59% of its customers with three negative articles on the first page of the search results
- A business loses 69% of its customers with four negative articles on the first page of the search results
- A business loses 99.9% of its customers with four negative articles on the first page of the search results
For any local business, reputation is built on online reviews. What they see formulates their impression of your business. It can not be said enough, “Your reviews are your reputation”.
What review sites are the most important?
By far, Google is the most important review site. Google’s search is utilized through its Google Business Profile management page (formerly called Google My Business). Most people (nearly 90%) use Google Maps or Google Search to find a business near them. In fact, for almost any service category they simply search the category and add “near me”. And yes, even 70% of iPhone users use Google Maps.
99% of Google searches result in a click as follows:
- Ads – 10% of search traffic
- Google/Apple Maps – 68% of search traffic
- Organic Traffic – 22% of search traffic
Optimizing for Maps is the #1 thing you can do to grow a business, especially when local intent is the driver. The best way to catch the attention of local searchers on local search maps. It has by far the fastest ROI and the highest ROI of any and all marketing activities.
Other review sites are still worth pursuing, such as Yelp, Facebook, or the Better Business Bureau – However, their importance depends on your business category. At the end of the day Google does not own Yelp, Facebook, or the BBB – so they have an inherent right to not promote those review sites.
How can local reputation management improve your local business reviews?
First, you have to realize your reviews are your reputation. There are many other marketing companies that offer fake reviews, how-to, or software that will improve your reputation. However, what we have found is unless you are doing reputation management on a full-time basis it is very hard to keep up with what you need to do. You also need a mix of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and human components. Our approach is very different, here’s why:
- Personally get involved as a fractional marketing department, some of the key things we can do are:
- Update your website (or rebuild it)
- Write content for your website
- Blog for your website
- Post to Social Media
- Write and post Press Releases
- Generate relevant and high-ranking links
- Actively ask questions and respond on Google Business Profile
- Actively solicit reviews for your company, we create and implement a plan to get customers to write reviews
- Respond to reviews on your behalf
- Make your business easier to find online with 5x as many keywords as our competitors (both long and short-tail keywords)
- Fight negative reviews (some you can get removed)
- Upvote positive reviews and downvote negative reviews
- Create a consistent stream of reviews
- Maintenance and consistently doing all of the above
Maintain and grow your business with our local reputation management
Once your reputation has been fixed or improve the most important thing is to not lift your foot off the gas. It is imperative to continually focus on local SEO to improve your rankings for your locations. We will consistently add content to your website, blog, post to social media, write press releases, and generate links – all of these will walk up your domain authority and your local search results.
Want to get started? Give us a call.