Here are three parts of establishing a solid online presence.
Secure Your Business Name
First and foremost, claim your name. Buy all related domains and pick a handle that you can use across all social media channels.
You want customers to be able to find you, not an imposter or competitor, when they type in your business name. If you can’t get your exact name as a domain, find one that’s closely related to your business name, so it’s intuitive when customers search for your business online.
Having the same or nearly identical social media handle across different social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, is a must. This build a trustworthy brand and credibility online. There are tools to help you find a handle that will work across social media:
Claim all the social media handles you might use someday. Set up the accounts now, even if you do not plan to actively use them. The value of claiming the name outweighs the potential downside of inactive accounts.
Claim Your Google My Business Listing
Claiming and verifying your business’s Google My Business listing is also important. This listing is your business profile that appears on the right side of Google search result pages.
The listing includes your location, hours of operation, related photos and contact information. An accurate Google local listing is important for search engine optimization and for ensuring that there is not confusing or conflicting information about you online.
Provide Accurate Information for Directory and Review Sites
There are many online directory and review sites, but likely there are just a few that are used by your target client. Pay attention to these. Examples include Yelp, Angie’s List, Houzz, Trip Advisor, and Realtor.com.
Claim your listing if you can. Always attempt to provide accurate information. Respond to any comments or reviews in a timely and professional manner. Through timely responses, you take control of managing your online reputation.