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How Do You Recover From Poor Business Listings Online?

How to Regain Trust from a Bad Listing 
Reputation management is key to keeping a business in a positive light, even after a bad business listing pops up. A bad business listing stems mainly from incorrect citations or addresses on a website. It gets even worse if the business has multiple locations. We know mistakes happen, but when it happens more than once or the original mistake (e.g. a street address) is not corrected, the business will lose consumer trust. It’s interesting that before social media, a business’s reputation was fixed with advertising (often costly) and/or with a press release. Today, social media creates an immediate need to get the correct information up on the website. We live in a world where instant gratification is the norm and to not fix an error on a website quickly, whether it’s a bad email address or an image, is a grave mistake. So, solving the problem includes being aware of it and fixing it quickly.
Digital Marketing Strategy 
Part of your digital marketing strategy is performing frequent website audits. This will allow you to correct a mistake or to post an update. You need to ensure that location pages are correct, including street addresses. It’s much easier to keep track of a multi-location business if you create a database for each location address, especially for the centralized location for the business. You can also create content silos. Each location should be individualized with content specific to it. For example, if your business has a location in West Chester (PA), you want to point out the location is not far from West Chester University or the Brandywine Battlefield. If there is any change to a business location, the website must be updated to reflect the change.
With any product or service, people want “proof” that they aren’t wasting their time or money on the purchase. The best way to provide to proof is through word of mouth. This type of advertising is priceless, especially since the person recommending the business is giving their opinion in person or over the phone. And it’s free. There’s also social proof, which is free too, but there’s more effort to get it on the business owner’s behalf. Let’s face it: when people are asked to provide feedback in the form of a survey, most ignore it. It’s not as easy as a friend asking another friend for a recommendation on what type of lawn service to use. There is no pressure to give a precise answer. Yet, when the testimonials are obtained and posted, they are very valuable. The more testimonials, the better. With each testimonial, you need to include:

  1. Names – preferably first and last. You can use just the first name when dealing with sensitive information. 
  2. Location – the city and/or state. When there are multiple locations, giving each city will emphasize the popularity of the product or business and market reach. 
  3. Images – if possible to obtain, an image will add more credibility to the product and/or business. Seeing the before and after images show the features of a product or the skills of the those providing a service (i.e. home remodeling companies). 

A Positive Reputation
Maintaining a positive reputation does take work especially with negative reviews. When there is a negative review, the business owner or manager should reply with a positive response. After all, the company may not even be aware of the issue. That’s why businesses spend large amounts of money on marketing consulting groups to ensure their social media marketing plans are proactive and effective.

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