March 8, 2018
What is digital knowledge? It’s all the public facts about your brand like name, address, phone number, hours of operation, products and services, that all live online for customers to search.
Those facts start with your website. At a minimum, this is the first place that the public facts about your business has to live. This information is online whether you’ve proactively listed it or not. Perform an Instant Listing Scan for free and see what your business looks like today.
It turns out that businesses’ websites are the place that search engines and customers both consider the most authoritative when they’re looking for these facts. Makes sense, right? You know yourself best. So your first step is to get this right. And for the last 20 years, this was pretty much the only step, because the website was the main place where people interacted with businesses online.
The Facts Managing Your Online Listings & Reviews
Information about your business lives on Google, and Facebook, and Yelp, and Apple, and over 100 other places. And when you add all these places up, all these mini websites for your business, they get an average of 2.7X more views than your own website. This number can go up to 10X for food services brands.
Each of these services has its own unique method and algorithm for compiling what it believes to be the most accurate information about your business. They consult a ton of different sources for this information, from government and phone records to user-submitted content and other directories.
And we’re not just talking about the big guys. Your business lives across other niche or verticalized places as well.
Sites like Vitals, or LendingTree, or Cars.com, or Seamless, all drive traffic in specific verticals. Language-specific sites are also driving traffic… YaSabe.com, for example, is a site that caters to the Spanish-speaking population. How many Spanish-speaking clients do you think you have? As much as 15% of all searches in the US are in Spanish. And since every customer matters, you want to make sure that every experience someone has with your business, wherever that experience takes place, is the best it can be.
Managing Online Reviews for Local Business
Online reviews have a huge impact on both businesses and consumers. The impact can be positive or negative. For example, for every star a business gets in their rating, their sales revenue will increase from approximately 5-9%. At the same time, 22% of consumers will not purchase a product after reading just one negative review about it.
In fact, in 2016, Google announced that it too makes decisions about which businesses to show based on what other people are saying.
In this case, Prominence is defined as a business’s reputation, which includes review count and rating. So what Google is saying is that it’s literally ranking your business in the local pack based on how many reviews you have, and how good those reviews are. If you don’t manage your reviews, you’re risking whether your business will even show up in search.
Keeping track of your business facts on hundreds of websites is a time consuming task. Using a Listings Solution that manages all third-party places is the best way to maintain your data. Your business is likely listed already online, whether you’ve put it there or not. If you are a local business who has not done an audit of how your brand is represented on these directories, then now is the time.