It’s natural for the amount of traffic heading to your business’s site to wax and wane over time – for example, in response to a search engine’s algorithm changes. But if you’ve noticed a sudden drop-off in how many people are visiting your site, could there be something more sinister to blame?
If you then find that people are starting to search for your site with such negative terms as ‘fraud’ or ‘scam’ attached, you might start to panic.
Don’t. Instead, get searching for those negative pages showing up in the search engines – such as on review sites or blogs – that might be causing such problems, so that you can look at ways of removing them or minimising their impact.
Obviously, you know your brand name, so search for that first. If nothing obviously negative comes up, take a look at any ‘related searches’ listed at the bottom of the search results. This will show the other phrases that people are using to find your business, such as ‘[company name] reviews’ or ‘[company name] address’. Such related terms could be good to use as targets in a brand reputation management campaign.
This can be followed by looking at whatever analytics dashboard you are using for your site – such as Google Analytics – and checking what search phrases people are using to find your site. Bear in mind that this won’t necessarily throw up negative terms, as people may be using neutral search terms and only then coming across damaging content about your company.
There are all kinds of terms that potential customers of yours may be entering into Google to end up stumbling across damaging content about your brand. The various types of searches that people typically perform include ‘navigational’ searches, for instance, which involve trying to find your site or a specific page on it, or ‘informational’ searches, when the person in question is not looking for your site, but instead information that your site may nonetheless contain.
Remember, too, to search both Google and Bing, as they are not exactly the same, as well as social networks like Facebook and Twitter that have their own search facilities.
Whatever negative content you do find through these processes, you should make a note of it, so that you can get on with removing, suppressing or otherwise responding to it productively to hopefully turn things around for your company.
If, however, you don’t find any damaging content about your brand... well, maybe it is an algorithm change that’s to blame after all.
Whatever the situation for your own company, when you get in touch with Jumping Spider Media, we can provide the services and expertise that can help to put your brand’s search engine fortunes back on track.