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Photo by Stuart Miles

Transparency – also known as honesty – can sound scary at first. Few businesses want to air their dirty laundry.

But the online world we live in now requires a business to be visible at all times, and that may require showing some bad along with the good. No person or business is exempt from errors, and with anybody able to post reviews of a business for everybody to see, let’s get in the game first.

Online review sites (like Yelp, Angie’s List and Amazon) can have a real effect on your company’s bottom line. Don’t wait for something bad to happen: act now!

This article on boosting online reputation names transparency as the first step in maintaining a good presence on the internet. All that means is tell people what you strive for as a business and if you have some weak points let people know upfront. Consumers appreciate honesty and a “personal touch”.

“Transparent” also means you can tell about the good things, too. Ask satisfied customers for reviews, get links from other businesses you work with, write in your own blog, post successes in your social media accounts.

Nature abhors a vacuum, so it’s better that you fill it with good things first. And if some bad experience happens with one of your customers and they post it online, respond to it in a professional, responsible and honest manner.

Read the full article for more ideas about reputation management: Ask an Expert: How to Boost Online Reputation?