Is Google Auto-Suggest Ruining Your Reputation?
When you type a search term you are likely to see several additional search terms appearing beneath the search box. These are Google’s suggestions, Google Auto-Suggest, and they can be very damaging if they don’t show the right things.
What would happen to your business, for example, if Google is suggesting things like [Business Name] Fraud and [Business Name] Scam? It’s likely you’ll chase away a lot of customers. Worse, some customers will click on these things out of mere curiosity, which will mean that Google will continue to suggest them whether your company is a scam or a fraud or not.
If you are caught in this position you need Google to start suggesting new things, and fast.
Google suggests results based on top searches by users around the world. They also respond to any shifts in popularity for those terms. Sadly, it’s rarely possible to get Google to filter those suggestions directly. They’re as adverse to doing that as they are to manipulating any other search results.
However, all hope is not lost. Here are some things that you can do.
Control the Search Term
Go ahead and buy a domain called [YourBusiness] Scam. Then fill it with great things about your business. That’s pretty boring to most people, and it makes your business look good. Boring is important, because it will keep that page, and that search term, from going viral.
Remove Negative Posts
Sometimes google auto-suggest happens thanks to one piece of nasty, viral content. It spreads around the web. People talk about it. People plug in the search because they are curious to see if there’s any more to learn. When it starts getting suggested other people click cause they’re curious. It becomes a vicious cycle. If you can get the post taken down the search term may disappear, too.
Create Some Buzz
Would you rather people see [Your Name] plus [Cool New Product] in the auto-suggestions? Hop on Twitter and Facebook and start sharing the cool new product. Make a video. Give people reason to talk about it. Give some away in return for blog posts. The more people talk the more people will start typing the search you want people to see.
Get Some Help
Sometimes you need far more advanced techniques to fix auto-suggest results. When this happens you might want to turn to a professional reputation management company, people who have the tools to change the face of Google Auto-Suggest. For example, InternetReputation.com has an Auto-Suggest RX solution that has helped other people who are in similar predicaments. If you’ve tried everything you can think of and Google is still giving you bad results then it may be time to turn to the professionals.
Need to learn more about reputation management? Try these posts on Project Eve: