What does online reputation repair look like? Let’s start with what it doesn’t look like. Nobody, including reputation repair companies can push a button and remove everything negative about a business’s reputation in a week or less. Sorry, but it’s just not going to happen.
And if any “so-called reputation firm” promises otherwise, then cease all communication with them and never talk to them again.
The problem is in part that search engines like Google have a long memory. Even if an incidence or a problem with a customer is five years old, it may remain searchable, and even show up as the number 1, 2, or 3 items after someone does a search for your business.
And unfortunately, you don’t have total control over a lot of things. You Don’t have control about negative trolls on the internet who get their jollies unfairly attempting to ruin otherwise find businesses reputation.
And you don’t have control over how Google and other search engines will rate and show up negative information when people are searching.
So what is the first thing to happen when a business person or a business contacts an online reputation repair agency?
Naturally, the first thing they do is conduct a half a dozen searches on Google, Bing, and other search engines and find out what comes up.
So just how does an online reputation repair service work?
Once we have accessed all the necessary information about you, we formulate a plan. A plan that will involve our active participation.
One of the first things we will do is ascertain how you do business. Are you afraid of negative feedback? To a point, you shouldn’t be thin-skinned. Consider being as transparent and open with customers as possible. Believe it or not, your customers don’t expect perfection.
For example, if you own a restaurant and a reviewer writes a scathing review about how the service was terrible, respond immediately. Reply that you are sorry for they didn’t have the best experience. tell them you are investigating further, and provide your contact info so that the two of you can discuss how to make things right.
People reading the reviews will react more positively if you recognize differences of opinion and seem open to resolving problems then if you pretend that problems never come up. Don’t be defensive.
Unfortunately, if it’s too late, and problems were not handled well a year or so ago, there are a number one thing that can be addressed by your reputation company.
One is that if someone posted a scathing review, sometimes your reputation company can get the original site that posted the review to remove it. Up to 45 percent or more of most reviews are fake, and review sites are being more careful about their own reputation.
If a scathing review is accompanied by a paper trail of how you attempted to resolve the problem, how the problem reviewer never contacted you in response, and that your internal investigation reveals the person never even bought your product, there is a good chance the review site will voluntarily remove the review.
However, you are not out of the woods yet. It may take 2 to 6 months for Google to notice the review was removed.
Reputation repair services go far beyond that, however. In reality, they are at the same time, SEO companies. By helping you have a growing, positive site and encouraging many positive reviews, your online reputation is gradually built up so that past negative programs show up on page 3 or 4 of a search, which as you know, hardly anyone reads.
Suppression by pushing positive impressions to the top of Google’s search and pushing negative problems to pages 2, 3, or 4 is the best long-term strategy, but it takes around 6 months or more to see really good results.