Many business owners don’t think about the long-term impact of negative reviews until they start showing up. Once they do, it’s important to take action right away and prevent them from harming your reputation and search engine optimization (SEO) ranking in the future. Here are 10 ways negative reviews affect your reputation and your SEO.
Why is reputation so important?
Despite being able to show up first in search results, receiving positive reviews, or just providing great customer service all on their own, your reputation is still crucial. On top of those things helping boost your SEO and building customer trust, it can also help keep search engines from shunning you for having too many negative keywords associated with your brand. For example, if someone were to say digital marketing agency scam in a review of your business, Google may associate that keyword with your website as well as others related to it (for example digital marketing agency fails). This creates a bad link that can affect not only rankings but also trustworthiness—two things you don’t want happening to your site.
1) Your customers may believe you are untrustworthy
Studies show that, when it comes to online reviews, customers don’t just base their views on what they read. The location of where a review is posted online also has an impact. Even negative reviews can affect your SEO reputation management as well as attract low-quality business leads for your digital marketing agency. Customers who see lots of positive reviews will be more likely to believe you have a great business with quality products and services. However, those same customers may have less trust in your company if they find only one or two negative reviews next to dozens of glowing ones. This can cause them to go elsewhere in search of help—often without ever realizing that other companies might not offer better quality or service than yours!
2) You lose opportunities for new clients
These days, everyone does a Google search before hiring a new service provider or business, so if your potential customers come across negative reviews about you, they might never know how great your company could be. They may click on to another page rather than risk dealing with an unknown quantity that has a bad reputation online. It’s important to monitor what people are saying about you online so that you can take steps to combat any negative reviews. Getting in touch with negative reviewers directly will do wonders for your SEO because it shows other web users that you’re addressing their concerns. And who knows? The reviewer may even change their mind and leave a glowing review instead of a scathing one after your interaction!
3) Customers are unlikely to buy from you again
Although it’s true that most people forget a negative review after reading a few positive ones, nobody wants to be associated with a business that gets terrible reviews. And since digital marketing agencies are in such high demand these days, one bad review can easily push away customers who don’t want to take risks when trying to find an agency for their own needs. The good news is that reputation management services like ours can help you fix your reputation by bringing down those negative reviews (and highlighting your positive ones). We provide multiple strategies, including site-wide link building services in order to increase our clients’ search engine rankings, especially with Google. A thorough SEO strategy will ensure that you stay on top of your competition, which means more business for you!
4) The search engines will punish you for negative reviews
Sometimes we all get bad reviews. In fact, that’s a very rare business that doesn’t experience them at some point. According to research, around 80% of customers are only willing to recommend a company or product if they can give positive feedback; 20% will only leave negative reviews (and you want to avoid these). And no matter how hard you work on your SEO reputation management campaign, bad reviews will impact your SEO rankings. The main reason for that is those who have nothing good to say about your business aren’t likely going to link back or refer any new customers your way – meaning less traffic.
5) Negative reviews affect your website’s ranking
Do you know that negative reviews can affect your ranking on search engines? In fact, even just one bad review can make a huge difference in your SEO. Poor quality content is usually written by people who have something to gain or are trying to damage a competitor’s business. It’s important to do SEO reputation management so that web users see only positive things about your company. If they don’t, they might not contact you, or worse, they may remember you as being untrustworthy or unprofessional.
6) Some customers will never come back
There’s no way to prevent negative reviews from showing up online, but you can minimize their impact. The truth is that some customers will never come back. In a small business, that can be devastating—especially if one angry customer’s review goes viral or becomes the negative review on your Google+ Local listing. Don’t let it happen to you: Make sure you have a plan in place for when bad reviews arise. Consider hiring an SEO reputation management agency if your website gets slammed with negative reviews (and keep reading for ways to prevent that from happening). It’s also possible that there are ways to mitigate those bad reviews so they don’t impact your company’s bottom line as much. Hire a digital marketing agency who knows how to take control of your online reputation.
7) Who is responsible?
Google+ is brand new, but it already has over 300 million users. If you haven’t started building a presence on Google+, it’s important to understand how your business could be affected by bad reviews. The truth is that most people don’t spend much time reviewing things; they rarely get around to updating their Facebook statuses or tweeting about their favorite movies. But there are 3 billion people who use Google every month, so each page listing should have at least a few good (or bad) reviews. And even if only one of those users sees your listing, that can make all of the difference for your reputation.
8) Not all negative reviews are bad
On one hand, negative reviews can be bad for your reputation. However, on a positive note, sometimes you can use those bad reviews to your advantage. Bad publicity is still publicity after all. You’ll need to focus on making it clear that you’ve listened to your customers and improved based on their feedback. In turn, that could bring in more people who were otherwise unaware of your company. More than that, offering an apology with some sort of resolution could help you come out looking like a hero rather than just another business who won’t take responsibility for its actions.
9) A little goes a long way
When you consider that you’ll likely receive dozens or even hundreds of negative reviews over time, it becomes pretty clear that a few bad experiences can do serious damage to your online reputation. You can only recover from a bad review if you know it exists—and Google is unlikely to tell you when someone leaves one. So be proactive: Monitor your business on sites like Trustpilot, Yelp, G2 Crowd, Glassdoor, Angie’s List and TripAdvisor for problems early before they escalate. And don’t ignore them. After all, customer satisfaction is an integral part of running any business.
There are many ways you can approach a negative review, but there are some approaches that don’t work. Don’t fight with a reviewer publicly; it will make your business look even worse. Use online reviews as an opportunity to show people what you’re doing right—you can do so by replying privately to bad reviews or creating a positive public response that reflects well on your brand. Just remember: negativity is not permanent. With time, your reputation can recover from a negative review if you handle it well! It all comes down to how badly you want to succeed in your business – only when you have confidence in yourself, can customers have confidence in you.