Reputation Management and Search Engine Rankings

Last week we challenged you to focus on your dealership’s online reputation in 2015 in our New Year, New You article. But did you know that your online reputation has a huge impact on your search engine rankings?

Try this. Imagine you’re a prospective customer. Do a Google search for your dealership. What do you see?

Sites such as Yelp and Yellow Pages have a lot of clout with Google search and will appear as one of the top results on the search page. Why? Consumers love online reviews, and search engines want to please these consumers because they are in the business of providing the most accurate information to help people make decisions. After all, Google’s mission statement is, “To organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.”

If there are reviews online for your dealership, without a doubt prospects are checking them out to see what others are saying. It has been reported that 85% of consumers read online reviews during their decision making.

So, what is being said about your dealership? Is it positive or negative? How can you turn those negative reviews into positive ones? One way would be to address them. Reputation, Reviews, Consumer TrustLet them know you appreciate the fact that they left a review, and then offer a way to remedy the situation. On the flip side, if a customer has a great experience with your dealership, such as great customer service when making a purchase, it’s ok to ask them to post an online review. This will benefit your dealership greatly because studies also show that 73% of consumers say positive customer reviews make them trust a business more.

Another thing to look for when you conduct your search is the information that’s listed about your business. If you notice that your business information is outdated on review sites, such as Yelp, Yellow Pages and/or Google+,  you need to update them. It is also a best practice to enhance these listings by adding hours of operation, service area, list of products, photos, contact information, social pages, etc. That way your dealership takes control of the information, ensuring that as people search for you, they will get accurate information about your dealership on these sites. It also shows the consumer that you care about their search experience with your dealership, building trust with them along the way.

What are you doing to manage your reputation online to stay in front of the conversations about your dealership? How are you ensuring that your search rankings are showing accurate results?


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