Online Reputation: Building Authority and Trust on the Internet
Authority, trust and a certain status have always been an essential factor for success in business life. Many medium-sized and traditional companies have built up an established brand or a certain reputation over years and decades — that is offline.
But the Internet is also becoming increasingly important for B2B business. Brand and reputation are increasingly correlating with rankings in search engines like Google. The problem of many traditional companies — the authority built up offline is not visible on the Internet and is therefore invisible to the algorithms of the search engines.
So how does an offline company manage to transfer its reputation to the Internet? Here are a few examples.
For Local companies
Local businesses should make sure to collect enough customer reviews on common platforms, such as Google My Business. However, it is not only about building reviews, but also about interacting with the reviewers. All reviews should definitely be commented on — both negative and positive.
If you receive a lot of negative reviews on Google My Business, you might wonder if you could deactivate the profile completely. However, that would not help. Google will still find a way to display the profile and the corresponding reviews. Instead, every company should have implemented an active reputation management system to be able to react to negative feedback at an early stage.
Your own website
The own website offers numerous opportunities to show authority, transparency, trust and expertise. The central element for trust is the “About us” page. On this page, a company can introduce wonderful people and employees from the company, ideally even in video format.
To increase authority, reviews from customers, partners or employees should be always displayed. The absolute basics should not be missing such as contact possibilities, customer support and SSL encryption.
Companies can radiate expertise above all through their content. Today, content marketing is indispensable for a good ranking in search engines. A good content marketing strategy should serve different phases of the customer journey.
A cultivated presence in the social networks contributes likewise to a high ranking position. The actual importance of social networks depends on the business model and the industry. However, a Facebook page with positive reviews never hurts.
The authority of a domain is typically judged on the basis of backlinks and mentions. To increase the authority of a domain, companies should rely on classical PR measures. These can be local newspapers or other authorities in the industry, for example.
If these PR measures are combined with clever link building, sustainable improvements in Google rankings can be achieved. A good possibility for such PR measures are for example industry-relevant case studies or statistical insights.
Many companies, especially in the regional area, do not lack newspaper or press reports. But if these reports are not online or can only be found online with a lot of effort, then they cannot improve the Domain Authority.
A company only achieves expert status if it shows its potential customers that expertise is available in-house. This works best through content. But expertise is rarely lacking. This is usually available in the company. There is usually a lack of processes to transfer the expertise to the website. Properly produced content with experts from the relevant industry not only generates more inbound leads, but also higher visibility and increased trust. It also shows customers that the company knows what it is doing and can solve their problems.