Why you Need to Pay Attention to Online Reputation Management for your eCommerce Business
“It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.” – Warren Buffet
Reputation is everything when it comes to being a retailer. Having a good reputation will help convince people to shop with you, while a bad one could potentially ruin your business.
In today’s digital world, all people have to do is enter your business’ name into Google, and they can immediately find out all about you—good and bad. This is where reputation management comes into play and it’s too important to be ignored.
Online Reputation Management (ORM) is the process of monitoring and taking control of your digital reputation to reflect the image you wish to have. It involves various aspects including websites, social media accounts, blogs, consumer review sites, and news articles. Having a good ORM process will give you feedback on what people are saying about you, enable you to be proactive in preventing a negative image, develop insights on your business to gain an edge over your competition, and develop strategies to market to the right customers while increasing sales, to name a few benefits.
In order to effectively combat, or even better, prevent a negative reputation, you must have a direct and purposeful strategy, which is accomplished with a good online reputation management process. Forgiving and forgetting may not serve you well and it could take just one instance to ruin your reputation, which can sometimes occur before you even realize it’s happening. Be diligent in addressing negative comments and take immediate action to reconcile any issues. Correct any inaccuracies portrayed about your business, and maintain a professional attitude and offer a positive solution as often as possible. More importantly, take measures to build a positive reputation by doing such things as engaging with customers through social media or promoting a likeable image through content on a company blog.
It can take a lot of time and effort to build and manage your reputation, but here are a few tools to help you develop an effective strategy.
- Trackur: This tool, which offers both free and paid plans, monitors social media to alert you when your company is mentioned. It offers analytics capabilities and powerful measurement tools that keep you current with what’s being said about you.
- Topsy: This tool is a real-time search engine powered by the social web. It searches for, analyzes, and gives insights on mentions and conversations primarily on Twitter. Topsy enables you to identify key thoughts and opinions either in real time or from the past, and uses metrics to model trends on the conversations surrounding you brand.
- Google Alerts: This is a service through Google that has you input search terms and sets up alerts for you to be notified any time Google finds new results on your chosen search terms. You can take this a step further and also use Me on the Web, another Google tool that notifies you when personal data about a specific individual is found in search results. This is a good way to monitor when individuals in your company are mentioned online to see how those mentions might impact your reputation.
Monitoring your online reputation is a continuous process. The Internet is always evolving, and the way in which you manage your image online should adapt to that. You work hard to make your business a success; don’t let a Google search ruin that.
Sobhana Narasimhan is a Senior Project Manager at LYONSCG. She graduated with a Master’s degree in Computer Applications from College of Engineering, Anna University, India. In her free time, Sobhana enjoys biking and making jewelry.