Steps for Dealing With Damaging Search Results

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As a business owner, there is nothing more severe than discovering your business has a negative search result associated with it. Entrepreneurs work hard to ensure their customers are satisfied with their products and services and that their business is a success. Unfortunately, negative search engine results are typical in business interactions. This is primarily because we are living in the age of information where customers have the option to share their opinions online. Sometimes, these views are not very encouraging.

Fortunately, there are proven techniques and strategies used by organizations to make discouraging content vanish. Similar to search engine optimization (SEO), which uses online strategies to make your business noticeable, reverse SEO uses a variety of methods to make a particular website less noticeable. This is how online reputation management (ORM) experts soften the impact of negative reviews about a brand. Mainly, there are two ways of doing this: removing the content and suppressing.

Removing Negative Content Completely

If you see a negative online review or a defamatory remark at the top of search results when you search for your brand name, your first instinct might be to have it deleted. Permanently removing a bad link from the Internet disassociates it with your brand name and makes sure customers do not see it again. It is effective, but it is not an easy task. You may not have access to content that is posted on a website or a page that you do not manage.

Removing Content From Pages You Own

Sometimes, your social media pages may display negative results. It can be a dangerous review or a negative comment. Most business owners choose to permanently delete the negative content. The problem with entirely removing the page or content is that search engines may immediately identify that page or content as missing, which may damage your SEO efforts and rankings. You can consider updating your business information to appear more positive and trustworthy. Alternatively, you can respond to customer comments politely and professionally.

Removing Content From Pages You Do Not Own

Often, a negative search result will show on a web page that is not owned or controlled by you. One of your customers may post a bad experience with your brand on a third-party review website. When you do not own the website, removing bad reviews is a challenging task and may require professional help. While it is not possible to completely delete the harmful content, you can still try the following options:

1. Contact the website or page admin and ask him or her to remove the content. If you can explain why the content must be removed, the page admins may reconsider your request.

2. Contact Google to remove websites that violate its policies of publishing sensitive personal information. For instance, publishing offensive images is a violation.

3. If the negative content is unlawful, you can take legal action. For instance, if the content falls under online defamation, copyright infringement or discrimination categories, it can be removed. However, this is risky territory, and you could end up spending a lot of money in legal fees.

Bury the Negative Content With Reverse SEO

One of the best ways to minimize reputation damage is through search engine suppression, also known as reverse SEO. This is similar to fighting fire with fire. Through this approach, instead of trying to delete offensive content, you create more positive content. This will help suppress the negative content in search results. In most cases, reverse SEO is not only effective at suppressing negative content, but it also works to strengthen your online reputation and to promote your brand in a positive light.

There are many ways to suppress the bad content, most of which are manageable and quite effective:

• Creating new social media profiles and ensuring you are active on them.

• Writing a blog and posting useful content regularly.

• Publishing rich media such as podcasts and videos.

• Optimizing existing content on your business website.

Suppressing negative content is like traditional SEO because the new content should be optimized for page ranking. The more positive content you create, the more it will rank higher and make the negative content less noticeable.

However, when dealing with negative online content about your brand, it is essential to have a plan and be rational. It is obvious to feel a rush of negative emotions when reading unpleasant reviews of your products. Instead, utilize this energy by creating an online marketing strategy to make the content disappear.

Hiring ORM Experts to Suppress Negative Content

A number of online reputation management firms offer services to help businesses get nasty content removed from the Internet. These companies can help you protect your privacy by monitoring and removing detrimental information from search engine results.

Remember that building and improving your online reputation is a continuous process. So even when you begin to notice positive results, keep sharing useful information on social networks and updating your website regularly.


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