Help for Kiwis Battling Damaged Reputations Online Help for Kiwis Battling Damaged Reputations Online Help for Kiwis Battling Damaged Reputations Online Help for Kiwis Battling Damaged Reputations Online

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Help for Kiwis Battling Damaged Reputations Online

Help for Kiwis Battling Damaged Reputations Online

A leading New Zealand search engine optimisation company has launched this country’s first ‘technically based’ online reputation management service, in response to rising demand from regular Kiwis and businesses whose reputations have been damaged online – often through no fault of their own.


The managing director of Auckland based A+ Search Engine Optimisation Ltd., Haiming Jiang, reports that his company was approached by a local school after an employee of theirs committed a crime and appeared before the courts – dragging the school’s name through the mud at the same time.


“In an age when everybody’s online reputation is vulnerable to anybody with a keyboard, ordinary Kiwis are at risk of having their career prospects damaged. Schools, companies and charitable organisations are also confronting a heightened level of threat to their reputation from disgruntled customers, people who have an axe to grind or legal issues involving people they have an association with.


“We recently had a business owner approach us because his name was on page one of Google’s search results in relation to a civil suite he took some years ago. He lost the civil suite, but that mention was damaging his ability to do business,” Mr Jiang said.


Unfortunately what happens on the Internet often stays on the Internet, with many of those affected feeling powerless to do anything about it, and solutions like online reputation software are not that effective at undoing the damage once it has been done.


“Unfortunately it’s not always possible to eliminate the listing completely, particularly if your name has appeared on a major news or media site in connection to an issue. However, it is possible to ‘bury’ the listing with good SEO practise – even if it is on a major media site,” Mr Jiang said.


The reality is that approximately 91 per cent of Internet users do not go past page one of Google’s search results, according to academic research (Using the Internet: Skill Related Problems in User Online Behavior; van Deursen & van Dijk; 2009).


“Just to be able to push the negative news off the first page of a search result is a giant leap forward. Using good search engine optimisation practise, we are able in most cases to shift the search result to page two or three, or further in some cases.


“For example, if you organisation has a website it could have more than 2000 pages mentioning your company’s name. By optimising those ‘positive’ pages, we can send the negative pages further down the search results – it’s not as easy as it sounds and there is more to it, but fundamentally it is about promoting the positive above the negative.


“The process involves working through social media too, because Google and other search engines are very attentive to social signals, and that affects your listing. The good news is that while everybody is vulnerable, most sites – such as media sites – do not optimise for brand, company or personal names, so the competition is less and this makes it easier to get results,” Mr Jiang said.


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