Protect your Online Reputation
Your online reputation is a vital part of your leads acquisition and sales processes.
However, many companies fail to pay attention to one key area which can negatively impact on converting leads into sales.
That key area is Google Reviews.
So as a quick exercise, do a Google search on your company or brand name and check what your customers are saying about you.
The ideal scenario is that you have lots of positive reviews. In which case, clap yourself on the back and keep doing what you’re doing!
The next best scenario is that you have mostly positive reviews and any few negative reviews there are have been answered/handled by someone on your team as best they can.
This involves replying to the poor review in a timely fashion, getting clarity on the issue and then either explaining your own viewpoint and, when necessary, apologising and trying to compensate in some way for whatever has occurred.
A negative review handled well may even result in the review being deleted if the complainant feels they have been listened to and treated well, even belatedly.
After that, you might only have a low number of reviews which are mixed in nature.
However, this scenario can be addressed by reaching out to customers you have a good relationship with and asking if they would kindly leave you a positive review. It doesn’t take too many positive reviews to counterbalance any poor reviews both in terms of your review average and in terms of the impression people might get when reading through them.
If I see 20 good reviews for every 1 poor review, I’m more inclined to overlook or even dismiss the poor review as just one of those unfortunate outcomes. No business can be completely perfect all the time.
Next up is the more serious scenario where you have very few positive reviews which are outnumbered by a much higher number of poor reviews – especially if those poor reviews have not been handled in any way.
It suggests to an outsider that your products or services are poor in general and that you don’t even care enough to address poor reviews when someone leaves one.
Companies can sometimes be guilty of only listening to their own staff or to loyal, long-term clients and so they are in their own echo chamber believing that everything is running smoothly.
As long as those long-terms clients are giving you repeat business, sales will continue and there may not be any warning that trouble is on the horizon.
However, long-terms clients may eventually leave the marketplace or find other suppliers which means that new clients and new business have to be found.
And this is where your Google reviews really matter.
Most potential NEW clients are going to look for some validation of their choice by checking out your website or your online presence in general.
As Google reviews are quite prominent on search engine results pages, they are quickly going to see what people are saying about you – before ever they see what you are saying about yourself on your own site.
If you’re not paying attention to these reviews, the impression someone might have of your company from the outside could be quite different than the impression you or your loyal customers have.
As we all understand, people who have had a bad experience are more likely to leave a review than those who have had a positive experience.
This leaves all of us vulnerable if we’re not actively seeking to safeguard our online reputation.
Don’t allow your sales and business prospects to be damaged just for the sake of spending a little time cultivating positive reviews and handling any poor ones that come your way.
So make it part of your default diary or month-end routine to take a look at what people are saying about you!