Mar 29, 2014

Company Reviews - The Importance of Archiving (saving) Online Reviews of Your Business

It's great to get good feedback about your business.  It's better when your happy customers share their positive experience with your company on the Internet for the world to see.  Popular "review places" include your Google Places listing (plus Google +, Google Maps and everything else Google), Epinions, Angie's List, The BBB, Facebook, Linked In, Yelp, Merchant Circle, and many more. 

Although online reviews are great, sometimes "stuff happens" and one day you see 15 reviews about your company and the next day...they're all gone!  

Reasons vary - yes, a previously happy customers that turned unhappy might delete their positive review, but logic would dictate that if they were displeased enough to take the time to manually remove their good review, they'd also take a minute to replace it with a bad review.  That rarely happens, so the true source of the problem is more likely an automated system to help keep content current (or similar type of old data purging).   Is it common for online reviews to vanish into thin air?  Check it out for yourself; Google "my online company reviews disappeared" or a similar query and you'll see thousands of sob stories about online reviews reported MIA (missing in action).

ONLINE REPUTATION MANAGEMENT: To help manage (protect and enhance) your company reputation online, Cole WebMarketing suggests that you manually archive (save) any and all reviews you find online.   Save them to your PC, back them up to the "cloud", put them on your phone, tablet, notebook computer so that if one day some are suddenly are gone from the web, they aren't ''gone for good'' (''gone for bad'' is more like it!).

SAVING REVIEWS: Data Mining is a hugely popular and profitable big business and although it's most commonly done by software, the process can be replicated by humans.  

HOW TO: When you search for your company online, any time you find a review about your company, copy and paste it into an email or a text document file.  Better yet, is do a "screenshot capture" of what you see on the screen - this allows for archiving in an image format exactly where the review was, what date, etc.  Ignoring Photoshop falsification methods, it for the most part preserves proof that you didn't write the review yourself.  Be careful concerning copyright issues, but sometimes or often you can integrate the content (copy & paste) the reviews into your own website.  If duplication like this is prohibited, simply link out to review (s) from your company website.

GOOD, BAD & THE UGLY:  Regarding good vs great vs so-so vs bad reviews...anytime we see a company with all "5 stars" or every review is glowing implying a company never does anything wrong, ever, to anyone...beware.   As much as we business owners try - sometimes you can't keep everybody happy all the time.   It's reality - stuff happens sometimes, whether a business actually drops the ball or whether it's merely a customers perceiving they've been wronged (sad fact: perception IS reality when it comes to customer relationships).  

REAL REVIEWS FOR REAL PEOPLE: Be honest with your online reputation - if a customer wasn't thrilled with their first or last interaction with your business and they post that dissatisfaction online, take advantage of it as an opportunity to show the world that you're human, and sometimes you do make mistakes BUT you do everything you can to right the wrong and resolve the issue.  An example would be a diner posting online what a horrible experience they had recently at your restaurant.  Instinct would make the restaurant owner click DELETE (if that was possible) or perhaps write a scathing rebuttal.  However, the reaction suggested by Cole WebMarketing is that you post a response online, if allowed at that particular review site, to say something along the lines of "This is Bob Smith, the Owner of ABC Restaurant, and I'm truly sorry to hear that we didn't meet your expectations - we hope that you'll give us another chance and to help make amends, we'd like to offer you a "2for1" coupon to be used on your next visit - I've left your name with our Hostess so simply mention this review to her and we'll provide you with this special token of our appreciation".

If your business is located in the Greater Charlotte NC Metro Region, for more information on reputation management and other related internet marketing tactics and solutions, please visit and then call us at 704-456-WEB1 (9321).