How is the power of the online review effecting your business? Are you embracing it, ignoring it, or are not even sure? It’s one of the biggest deciding factors that stand between you and your sales. This can be a good thing or a not so good thing. The cause and effect can be the difference of having a thriving business and dying business. The double edged sword is having the ability to use the moving power of the Internet to being proactive or ignoring it.

Understanding the simple concept that what people say online has become accepted as truth is undeniable. Of course when you and I are searching through Google and other areas on the web for someone to do business with, we are very dependent on what is being said to us, either from reviews and or what the listings say. We are making a conscious decision sometimes in a split second. If we see no reviews, how can we trust the company enough to spend our hard earned money with them? If they have good reviews and or bad reviews then we can have some deciding factors to help us. Positive reviews help us make a quick YES decision and negative reviews help us make a quick NO decision. Your cash register just rang up a sale or you just lost money.

3 types of online perceptions from business owners:

  • Having no online reviews – “This won’t hurt me or my business, this is good and I don’t have to worry about it”, this is not true! Cause and effect: The cause is no one is being proactive. The effect: The business owner is letting someone else make the decision for them.
  • Having positive online reviews – That’s great if you’re getting positive reviews, how are they being managed and marketed? If you’re being proactive that’s great. But if you don’t have some kind of reputation management and marketing plan in place, your sales are up for grabs.
  • Having negative online reviews – Of course negative online reviews are a business killer! So what do you do about that? Here are a few tips:
    • As mentioned before being proactive is key
    • Make your best assessment
      • Review the top directories like Google, Yelp, Facebook, Twitter for starters
    • Put together a plan of defense
      • It’s not as easy as calling up the directories and telling them you want them to take the negative reviews off.

So just to recap: for maximum results and better control over online reviews being proactive is best, have a plan in place and follow through. Written by Tim Frisch –