Building a good online reputation is extremely important for those who run a business. This includes gaining a good reputation with the search engines and a good reputation with customers. The problem is that companies and businesses cannot control what others say about them so they need to find ways to control the information that shows in search results first.

Why Have a Reputation

The first question many ask is why a reputation online is necessary. Those who have no trail on the internet will miss out considerably. They will lose customers or clients and will struggle with business. This is because so many people are now using the internet for searches and purchases, whether they need a job or want to find the perfect gift.

Employers, potential employees, potential customers and home buyers – as examples – all look online for information about any person, company, product and property before making a purchase. Those who have a good reputation will gain business while those with negative reviews or no trail at all will struggle. The majority of the time this search is done on a professional ground but there are times that people will search for personal information.

Anything posted has the possibility of showing up online, which means that it is important to think before writing anything. This includes Facebook statues, articles and blog posts and even forum comments. They all affect the reputation of a person and a business and have an effect on the way others think of the person or business.

Find Out What Others Have Said

It is important to find out all of the information on the internet about the business or company. This is easily accomplished through a quick search with the business name. It is worth trying different search engines as the algorithms differ and different types of information will appear. If the name is common, there are chances that someone else will show up beforehand.

You will likely find a variety of information out there. Some of it will be links to social media pages, while other parts will be the link to the company website and third-party review websites about the company. Take a look at all the information available to determine whether it is good or bad.

Remove As Much Harmful Results as Possible

Business owners have no control over reviews that people leave or some of the information stored but they do have control over some areas. If there are forum posts that have been made on behalf of the company that are harmful, it is possible to modify or remove them. The account information will be required for this to happen. Other than that, there are options to request to have the information taken down or write a rebuttal for any negative comments.

Having a good online reputation is important for business. Potential customers and clients will search for more information about a company before making a purchase. If there is anything that damages that reputation online, there is a risk in losing business and money.

This is a guest post by Jean Ryan, an online entrepreneur and writer who helps online merchants improve their internet reputations through savvy social networking and daily online monitoring. She has written and published various articles on the subject and has consulted for various businesses, especially on the topic of the management of online reputation disasters. Follow Jean Ryan on Google+.