Friday, 24 August 2012

Why A Bad Business Reputation Is Harder To Ditch Than Ever Before

Business Reputation
There are few things more important to a business than its reputation. A good reputation can bring in new customers and help to keep old ones satisfied. A good reputation can also help a business change and grow, possibly merging into a bigger and better version of itself. A bad reputation, however, can do just the opposite. And, more than ever before, a negative reputation can stay with a business and affect its growth for years to come.

With the advent of online operations and communication, the times for businesses are changing. It is no longer possible to survive with a bad reputation, and it is harder and harder to make things right once you're given a bad rap. Here's why:

1. More people have access to private information than ever before.

Today is the age of complete and utter access to information. While there are many things that are still kept private, there has never been a time in history when more strangers have had higher access to private information about other people. As a business owner, this means that potential customers can look into almost everything about your business. They can see when it was founded, how your prices compare to other retailers, and whether or not your business has a strong online reputation. On top of this, they can find out as much information as they like about you and your personal life. By searching for your name, customers can find information on the trajectory of your career, where you live, even you home phone number.

While this may lead to Big Brother type fears, the real issue here for business owners is the fact that there is almost nowhere to hide your dirty laundry, unless you are already making the bug bucks and can afford a costly PR rep. You have no control over who has access to your online history. So, it's best to figure out exactly how your private information could detract from your business goals and do your best to work around it.

2. Nothing is reversible online.

Most people think they have control over the information they share online. They assume that, when they post a photo or change their status, it will be available to others so long as it remains online. Then, once it's taken down, people will no longer have access to the content. This, however, could not be further from the truth. In fact, there is absolutely no reversing something you did online. Not only are online interactions and posted content often recorded (for example, the Library of Congress has recorded every tweet out there from the beginning of Twitter), once you post something, you are basically giving it up for free use to the general public.

People are free to copy, save and re-post anything you put up online. Just because you take something down, it doesn't mean it's gone. Because of this, people often have to pay for things that they said or did years ago, even if the information is no longer available online.

3. Consumers can communicate and easily rate services.

While the advent of sites like and Yahoo Business has definitely helped business in many ways, they also have the potential to greatly hurt a business, as well. The ability to place reviews and communicate about particular businesses on a wide scale is a fairly recent development. Before consumer review sites, people had to rely on word of mouth or organized reports, such as Consumer Reports, to determine where to put their business. Now, business owners have to be very careful not to get bad reviews online. Because anyone can post anything they like about your business online, and because consumers are listening more and more to the opinions of other consumers before making purchase decisions, these types of reviews can stay with a business for years to come.

About The Author: Working for one of the best background check companies, Jane Smith offers insight and advice on the subject through her blogs. She welcomes you to email her your questions, comments or concerns at

Do you like this article by Jane Smith? Has the reputation of your business been unduly effected? Please let Jane and myself know by leaving us your valued comments below.

Coming next week on Derek's Home and Business Blog: Three articles on e-commerce. On Monday, there will be an article by our guest author, Wayne Barker which will provide vital information on setting up your very own e-commerce business. On Wednesday, there will be an article explaining the benefits of incorporating SEO within the design of an e-commerce website and finally on Friday, there will be a second article by our guest author, Wayne Barker which will provide information on marketing your e-commerce business.

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Until my next post on Monday when the first of the three articles on e-commerce is published, have a fabulous Summer Bank Holiday weekend!

1 comment:

  1. Buyers are very strict when buying product online. Most of them browse the web before making their decision and this is the reason to make sure that you should take care of your reputation online.


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