One of the largest hidden impacts on search, specifically domain authority, is your total online presence. This online presence is represented by everywhere your business appears online. Depending on your business, that can mean that you appear in many different places online, most of which you’re probably not even managing or of which you are aware. In this blog post, we’re covering what is involved in optimizing your online presence:
- Discovering all the places where you exist online
- Taking ownership: claiming your unclaimed online profiles
- Optimizing and maintaining those profiles
- Reputation management
- Some tools to consider for online presence management
Find Out Everywhere You Are
Sometimes it pays to just Google your business and see what comes up. You might actually be surprised at what you find, such as reviews on platforms you’re not even monitoring, like Yelp. Maybe you’ll find out that one of those disgruntled employees left a scathing review on a site like Glass Door. Being aware of and optimizing your online presence holds a bit of success for you, not only in managing your reputation, but also for making Google like you just a bit more.
Google places a bit of ranking factor on your online profile, specifically something known as NAP/NAPW (name, address, phone and website), being the same on as many online platforms as possible. This means that your NAPW should match EXACTLY everywhere that it appears, like Google, Facebook, Yelp, Indeed, Glassdoor and any online directory like Google Maps.
Keep in mind, there are a few platforms that are the most important to optimize, such as Google My Business, which impacts Google Maps, Apple Maps, and Facebook.
Taking Ownership of Your Profiles
Simply put, Google is where your bread is buttered, especially since most of the US and global search market share exists on their platform. That said, if you want someone to find your business, make sure that you own your businesses profile on Google.
It’s actually pretty easy, and GRIT can help. If you don’t own it, there are some simple steps:
- Google your business
- If nobody owns the profile, you’ll see a link that says “Own this business?” – click it
- Follow the steps to claim and verify the profile
Facebook and other platforms offer similar claim and profile verification systems, making it unbelievably easy to unify your online presence.
Once again, the most important thing to do is make sure that your NAPW exactly matches exactly across all of the sites and platforms.
Optimizing Your Presence
So, it’s not just as simple as claiming the profile, though it’s easy to get started. Optimizing these profiles usually means taking a few minutes on each of them to go through the verification process, and then writing a little bit about yourself or your business so that it makes it easy to find you.
Usually, a short description is required. This short description should closely match on each site, but should be tailored to the audience that uses that online platform. For example, when you write a description for any platform, it should contain at least one broad search keyword that people use when looking for a business like yours. The rest of the content should match your brand’s voice, and be written to be most effective with the most common audience that uses that platform.
For example, on Facebook, you can easily identify the most common audience that visits your Facebook page through the page insights, and then write a description that is more likely to meet that target demographic’s needs, but that also resembles your general brand identity.
Remember, your key business information should still exactly match what you have on your website, and in Google.
You can’t talk about optimizing an online profile without discussing reputation management at least a little bit. Let’s face it: when you start looking into your online presence, you may find that not everyone likes you, and has probably said as much, somewhere, at some point online.
Repairing or contravening ongoing negative sentiment about your business or brand is relatively easy, but you need to be aware that it’s happening. And that’s where some of the tools come into play.
Tools for Online Presence and Reputation Management
GRIT strongly supports spending less time and investing a little money to get the most bang for the buck when it comes to online presence and reputation management. While given time and a budget, we can quickly and easily capture 80-90% of your online presence and even rectify some negative sentiment, sometimes it’s quicker and easier – and even cheaper for you in the long run – to look at an online toolset that’s built for this purpose.
At GRIT, we typically use a tool like Yext to manage our client’s online presence and reputation management. Yext is a relatively inexpensive way to unify your NAPW in many online directories and review systems, while simultaneously receiving alerts to modifications and new reviews on those online profiles.
Getting It Under Control
GRIT has years of experience in handling negative online reviews, cleaning up online profiles, and setting up a great strategy for brands to use moving forward in managing their own online presence.
Assuming that at some point during this article you Googled your business, it’s likely that your eyebrows may have been raised at what you found. Contact GRIT today, and we can help you navigate this complicated space and repair your online presence and reputation quickly.
Contact us today!