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The Importance of Reputation in Online Businesses

By Contributing Writer
Analisse Weathers
July 11, 2022

Nowadays, it is impossible to run any business and not have an internet presence. Going by the latest stats, around five billion people surf the World Wide Web today, representing 63% of the planet’s total population. Moreover, only 350 million users don’t have an active social media profile. Hence, it is unavoidable that people will look to check reviews of companies whose goods and services they are considering paying for and using. The consumer purchasing process has dramatically changed with the invention of the internet, with few people buying anything without doing quick research about it.

When it comes to a brand that operates exclusively in the digital sphere, star ratings make all the difference regarding if a customer will decide to go with a specific company or pass on it. Positive reviews also help businesses rank higher in search engine outcomes, making them more easily discoverable. Moz, one of the world’s finest marketing software developers, backs up this claim, stating that, per its research, decent user evaluations generate more organic local Google search results. So, word of mouth is king in how the public perceives a brand and how the brand identifies itself. Image can make or break a company, and a good one is necessary for any entity to thrive, particularly ones that operate online, where a perception of user satisfaction rules. Associated brand negativity can irreparably damage a brand, dramatically lowering its profile and driving it into obscurity.

Top Reasons While Online Reputation Matters

Every company these days monitors its reputation. Studies show that 90% of customers read reviews before visiting a land-based business. Furthermore, 84% of people polled state that they trust online reviews equivalently to in-person ones. That alone illustrates the influence that good standing can have, especially on internet-only companies. Thus, management and marketing teams in such organizations must oversee Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, and other similar social sites. And mark down what people are talking about concerning their brand, replying to negative and positive comments, which aids in building a sense of community and customer care.

A good reputation gives businesses a competitive advantage as, when it comes to the five-star ranking system, most consumers are unlikely to pay for services/products rated below 2.5 stars. It also facilitates engagement and builds trust. If someone continuously gets showered with praise, it creates the notion that that is a trustworthy entity that does not engage in nefarious practices. All these factors inevitably lead to higher profits.

Google has become the new business card, and most people never make it past the first page of this engine’s generated search results. So, it is vital that businesses are easily detectable online and that they do not carry a negative connotation linked with their name. As mentioned, good reviews increase brand visibility, not only on Google but on social media, which are networks that can tremendously get leveraged for marketing purposes.

Review Sites That Have the Most Impact

There are general review sites where customers can rate virtually any company and ones dedicated to specific industries. For example, TripAdvisor is likely the most unique and impactful hospitality appraisal platform, followed by Expedia, Trivago, Booking, and Travelocity. In the interactive gaming sector, a super popular online field, there is no one massive hub that reviews gambling platforms. Instead, online gamblers rely on multiple analysis sites to discover reputable online casinos. These post in-depth explorations of gaming sites and also leave space for their patrons to leave their ratings. That is a practice implemented by many other industries.

In the Tech field, over the years, several platforms have risen to a status where their writer’s opinions carry substantial weight with consumers. Without question, the most famous of this batch is the renowned Tom’s Guide, followed by TechRadar and CNET. They usually evaluate products and companies slightly before they hit the market or on the day of and have the power to sway the public. Most sectors have such influencers.

But, per Alexa’s US rankings, Google My Business is the undisputed king of customer reviews, boasting an average US monthly traffic of 158 billion. Amazon and Facebook fight for second place with traffic numbers of around 85 million, with Yelp standing in fourth place, with 40 million visitors per month. Yellowpages and Manta are other popular platforms that feature customers’ experiences in multiple diverse industries that can help shape an individual business’ public image.

This article was written in collaboration with igaming analyst experts.

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