What is E-reputation?
Definition of e-reputation
E-reputation is simply the reputation of a company, a brand, an individual or a product on the Internet. In other words, e-reputation is the image of an entity on the Internet. This image can be positive or negative.
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74% of consumers check Google reviews before buying a product or service, 64% of consumers consult reviews and ratings from other Internet users before making a purchase. 90% of consumers trust their friends (90%) and unknown Internet users (78%) more than brand advertising (16%). As many percentages as there are reasons to be interested in e-reputation.
A bad e-reputation can cause a company’s sales to drop drastically, or even force it out of business. While a positive reputation can increase the number of customers of a company and generate a flourishing business. It has therefore become essential to perfectly manage one’s online image. It is indeed a factor of success or failure that no company can afford to ignore in the modern world.
Digital identity: definition and difference with e-reputation
Digital identity is the image that companies voluntarily or involuntarily leave on the Web (publications on social networks, press releases, websites, videos, etc.). Digital identity therefore depends solely on what the company agrees to show or not. We must differentiate between digital identity and e-reputation. The latter does not depend on what the company decides to publish, but on what people publish about it (comments on Google, on social networks, blog posts, etc.).
In other words, digital identity is the manageable part of one’s online image, while e-reputation is the “suffered” part, whether positive or negative.
What are the challenges of e-reputation?
The stakes of e-reputation are numerous and are played out at different levels: via search engines, online review platforms, social networks or via local referencing. Mastering these different channels means mastering your online image and therefore creating a real link of trust between your prospects and your customers. There are many players; it is therefore necessary to have a global vision of who is talking about you and on which media. Mastering your brand image is indirectly ensuring a gain of customers via a wider and controlled visibility.
Who are the actors of your e-reputation?
Many actors can intervene when it comes to influencing the e-reputation of your business in one way or another. Today, it is essential to know them by making an audit of your e-reputation and to operate a constant and strategic watch to avoid crises and bad buzz. We will distinguish here 5 actors that can influence your reputation on the Internet: the company and its employees, the Internet users, the influencers, the different media and finally, the competition.
The company and its employees:
According to a study conducted in 2012 by the Université Libre de Bruxelles, 84% of corporate crises are linked to an internal problem. A company can indeed damage its image on the internet for many reasons… It could sell a faulty product, have a dubious or even misleading communication or marketing, disseminate information that should not be disseminated, or show poor organization. In order to keep its popularity intact, the establishment will have to start by being irreproachable.
A company’s employees are also capable of causing an earthquake if they are not properly aware of how to use social media in relation to their work. Real controversies can erupt following an unfortunate publication or a diffusion of confidential information and have repercussions on the company’s turnover.
Internet users obviously play a decisive role in the e-reputation of a company. Whether it is through exchanges on social networks, Google reviews, digital word-of-mouth, information sharing, etc., surfers of all stripes have gradually become the masters of the game when it comes to a company’s popularity. With a smartphone in his pocket and a few tweets, a surfer can create a buzz or a controversy in a few seconds. It is therefore very important to constantly monitor your users!
When you know that 78% of Internet users trust the opinions of strangers on the Internet (Nielsen study) and that 25% of users say they are capable of boycotting a brand on social networks (Ifop survey), you understand that it is necessary to be very careful with them.