suppress negative search results

suppress negative search results

Negative content can damage a company or person worse than the author often realizes. Sometimes it can be taken down, other times it must be pushed down or suppressed. An online reputation suppression strategy is based on moving newly created, and existing positive search results, higher up in search engine results in order to move down or ‘suppress’ negative search results.

The further down you can push negative content, the less likely a reader is to see it. In fact, most people don’t look further than the first page of Google search results anyway.suppress negative search results

What’s the right strategy for negative content?

Deciding on the right online reputation management strategy (ORM) can be a challenge. It can be jarring to find yourself in the midst of a reputation scandal. But by focusing on the cause of the problem and developing (and following!) an action plan can help lessen the impact.suppress negative search results

Solving the problem that caused the negative feedback is paramount. But even after that’s been done there is more work to do. Here are some sample strategies:

  • Remove results directly from Google
  • Remove from the source through negotiation
  • Remove from the source via legal channels
  • Paid removal
  • Weakening of negatives
  • Development and optimization of branded content
  • Review improvement and management
  • Optimization of existing content

Reputation problems can range from bad reviews to negative blog posts or unflattering online newspaper articles. Since most content cannot be removed, a reputation management strategy centered around suppressing or pushing down bad search results is the most common strategy after review management.

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There are effectively three ways to completely remove a negative search result at the source. You can:

  1. Have the web site owner remove the page entirely.
  2. Have the web site owner add a NOINDEX tag to the HTML of the web page you want Google to ignore. (NOINDEX tells a search engine to ignore the page). This effectively removes the page because it removes it from search engines without actually taking the page away.
  3. Change the content on the page so it is no longer relevant for the target search query.