When you googled your business today, you probably weren’t expecting that bad search result, but now it’s there, dragging down your reputation and rank. If you have been working on a digital marketing strategy or increasing your social media followers, this one result could bring down those, too. Social trust is a huge factor when online customers make a purchase.
If you notice a bad result in Google, there are ways to remove or hide google search results. Businesses that are actively monitoring their reputation can fix these issues quickly.
How to Remove Bad Results from Google
In this first guide, we’ll look at how businesses may be able to entirely remove a negative result from Google.
However, there are two approaches to this depending on where the negative result is located. If you own the page, you can remove the content quickly. Here’s how:
Why remove your own content? If you have old products not available still showing in search or if there is a page of content that has been flagged inappropriate in Google Search Console, you can remove these easily in Google Search Console.
- Go to Google Search Console.
- Head to the Google Remove URLs Tool within Google Search Console.
- NExt, exclude pages from being crawled using the robots.txt technique or if you have WordPress, there are many plugins, such as Yoast page removal tool.
- Add a noindex meta tag to a page so that it can’t be crawled and therefore added to SERPs.
These guides are only for those pages and sites that you control. If you want to remove results from pages that you don’t own that are showing up in search, follow this guide below:
How to Remove Content Websites that Are Not Your Own
Typically, businesses want to remove negative results from other websites, such as a bogus review on a scammy website that’s obviously promoting your competitor. In other cases, it could be a negative review on social media or a website dedicated to complaining about your customer service.
These sites are harder to remove content from because you have to work with the site owner. There are two approaches to remove content from other websites negatively affecting your business.
Contact Website Owner
If you know the location of the negative content, then you can contact the owner. It’s best to start off with an email and a resolution to remove the content, such as offering to correct problems experienced or refunding the cost.
Bad reviews aren’t always there to destroy your business. These create buzz and discussion, but if you can negotiate with a blog owner or website administrator about the content, then perhaps they’ll remove it or edit the content to show that you provided a solution.
Contact Google About Negative Results
In some cases, content is just plain inappropriate, harmful, and outdated. For example, if someone published personal information about you as a business owner or made slanderous statements, you can ask Google to remove this information. However, these pages will still be hosted on the website, but they won’t appear in Google search results if the decision is made to block the content.
How to Suppress Negative Content Using Reverse SEO
Recently, agencies have begun offering services called “reverse SEO strategies” or “positive SEO content strategies.” These are strategies to clean up your internet reputation help businesses push down and eliminate negative but ancient results.
When newer, more relevant content is indexed in Google, it has a higher chance of ranking over a negative result that is outdated and irrelevant to the latest news about your business.
Reverse SEO weakens the position of negative content when all tactics are employed. This means that once you build a positive content strategy and start publishing, you also need a content marketing plan to link back to this content so that it starts ranking.
These strategies are effective for decreasing another page’s rank with negative results, but they’ll still show up in the 2nd or 3rd page of results. They could possibly show up in the top results if a customer searches the right keywords as well, such as “[your brand name] + scam.”
To suppress this content, you’ll likely need a blog and new SEO content pages added to your website.
New content published daily will help your business establish authority and push down other results as you build up your indexed pages in Google
Reverse SEO strategies may also employ keyword research on negative results so that you can build microsites around these keywords to take back rank, while publishing positive content around these keywords instead.