There is no better way to gauge your online presence than by Googling yourself. Google name searches are done by people you meet every day, including potential employers, network connections, university admission committee, and even a potential client.
You need to ensure that when someone googles your name, the first few links should be relevant and positive. So here is everything you need to do to ensure a healthy online presence that speaks for your achievements, hard work, and reputation.
The answer to this is a resounding “Yes.” Almost a billion names are being Googled every day. It doesn’t matter what stage of life you are in. People have grown accustomed to the fact that everyone’s life is online to a certain extent.
This is why most people tend to search for people online. Thus, it becomes essential to take control of what your online persona says about you.
However, out of the people who Googled themselves, 20 percent reported inaccurate or outdated information, while 12 percent were surprised by the unpleasant things they found. Other people with the same name influence a whopping 33 percent of searches.
These things might not seem too crucial at a cursory glance, but they could significantly put off clients or employers.
Fifty percent of people do not own the first search result for their name. Throughout your education and career, people are bound to look you up. Your online presence, therefore, has a lot of say in where you reach in life.
However, 90 percent of people do not search for anything further than the first result. This means that your personal and professional contacts have already formed an impression about you based on the first search result that the Google search shows.
Here are a few reasons you should Google yourself.
If you are not sure how to google yourself or if you are wondering “how to remove my name from google searches,” don’t worry. Here is how you can see what others exactly see when they search for you.
Google supports the use of personalized local searches when you are logged in to your Google account. Ensure that you sign out or use the incognito window. This gives you an objective idea by depersonalizing the search. Opening the incognito ensures that Google does not alter the result rankings.
Make a list of all possible combinations of names people might use to search for you. It is always best practice to go by a single name personally and professionally. However, this is not always possible.
Your list should include variations, nicknames, titles, hyphenated names, and so on.
This gives you a fair idea of which results are more visible. When you are searching, make it a point not to open up negative results multiple times. This gives Google the impression that it is the more popular result, bringing it to the forefront.
Google yourself often and at regular intervals. Once a month is a good interval for normal folks. You could even choose to set up an alert for new search results. These are directly sent to your email, making it convenient for you to go through them.
Something most of us forget to do is to run a Google image search. A simple option is the reversible image search. The results are a combination of pictures and websites. So, you can check anything relevant.
The process doesn’t stop with simply Googling yourself. You have to take action in order to control the information that is available online. You need to recreate your online persona or at least prune the existing one.
Here are some things that have to be done after you Google yourself.
Make sure you maintain a list of social media accounts you have created. Make sure the sites showcase a consistent story as far as your professional growth is concerned. You can even choose to upload a resume if the options are available. Now deactivate and delete any social media accounts you made ages ago that are no longer important. It is vital to prune your accounts continuously.
Also, make sure you represent yourself consistently and with the same name. This is how your professional brand will be perceived.
If you find some negative information, you can always contact the website and request for the mention of your name to be removed. The best way to deal with them is by pushing them down. You can do so with new content like a blog, website, and so on.
If you are unable to do so, the next course of action would be to prepare for it to come up. In case recruiters bring it up during an interview, you need to be prepared to handle it.
Identify what type of presence you have online and the reputation your online persona has.
Make sure you eradicate negative results like bullying, drug or alcohol abuse, criminal charges, and so on. Make a strategy that includes removing whatever you can and building a positive presence.
If you need some help creating your new online presence, NewReputation is always here to help. We will focus on pruning your name search results while allowing you to optimize your brand online.
With the continuous screenings that occur in every part of your life, we can help you stand out and show yourself and your work in a positive light.