How a Few Complaints Can Hurt Your Online Reputation

Nearly every business is going to have an unhappy customer from time to time. Often, it’s a complaint that’s easily fixed with a quick refund, a replacement item, or better customer service.

Still, you can’t please everyone. And nowadays it’s too easy for a dissatisfied person -- or a competitor -- to post complaints and accuse your company of being a scam or worse.

Trouble is, for every ten thousand happy customers who don’t post positive comments about you, there’s one unhappy customer who posts negative comments. So when your potential customers do an online search, all they may see will be those negative postings.

It only takes a few complaints to start showing up on the search engine results pages for your online reputation to suffer.

Now, wouldn’t it be great if every happy customer posted a postive comment or compliment about you online? Sure. And that will happen when pigs fly, hell freezes over, and we all live together in peace and harmony. In other words, don’t hold your breath.

Satisfied customers have no need or little incentive to spend time posting good reviews or comments about you.

And you may feel it’s beneath your dignity to actually suggest they do this. But it often doesn’t hurt to ask, and your loyal customers may be happy to spend the time online recounting their pleasant experiences with your company.

Try to identify those customers who have nothing to complain about and who have been with you a while. Then politely suggest that, if they are happy with your products or services, they go to such-and-such website or forum and mention their positive experience with you.

The more you can do this, the better your online reputation will be.

If you don’t feel comfortable doing this, I understand. It’s not easy asking for compliments outright. This is why I make sure good reviews get posted about my clients, which is a key strategy in reputation management.

We just don’t want to let those few complainers overshadow all the good things about your company.

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