Yelp Review Generation

Yelp Review Generation

What You Need to Know About Generating Yelp Reviews for Your Business

Did you know that almost 84% of people trust online reviews as much as they trust a personal recommendation when buying a product or service? 

Online reviews are most influential in the restaurant business, where it has been found that more than 61% of customers read online reviews before visiting a particular restaurant. Simply put, online reviews matter, and can either make or break a business. With so much riding on your online reputation, it pays to understand the ways to get those hallowed online reviews. Here, we are going to give you some useful tips on Yelp review generation.

Why do Yelp Reviews Matter?

Online reviews are mostly left on sites such as Facebook, Google, and TripAdvisor, with Yelp being one of the most sought-after review site for local businesses. 

It’s no surprise that consumers rank Yelp as the number one online review site when it comes to finding local businesses. Yelp encourages users to leave reviews on its site, making it easier for consumers to find local businesses when they search for them on Google. Furthermore, consumers have been found to treat Yelp like just another social media outlet, where Yelp allows people, called “Yelpers”, to create a user ID, build a profile that reflects their personality, and even include their pictures. 

In this way, Yelp encourages users to not only share their opinions with others, but connect with friends, make public check-ins at restaurants and even comment on other reviews. 

Should You Ask Your Customers for Yelp Reviews?

Unlike other review sites, where the business owner can ask for customer reviews, keep the positive ones and delete the negative reviews, in order to keep things professional and to improve the level of trust, Yelp has taken another approach to how reviews can be shared on its site. It is true that, unlike other review sites, Yelp does not post all of the reviews that a business receives. Instead, the service uses an algorithm that decides which review gets to appear on the site, and in what order. This mostly depends on a few factors, such as, who are the reviewers. Yelp normally favors those users who have contributed many reviews on local businesses, have shared a lot of photos and have many friends amongst fellow “Yelpers.”

According to Yelp, businesses are not allowed to ask their clients for reviews, which can be a challenge for small businesses that are trying to compete with the big fish. But that being said, there are ways in which small businesses can build up their online presence using Yelp. 
  • Include a Yelp button to a business website, prompting customers to go on Yelp and leave a review.
  • Let customers know your business has been indexed on Yelp so that they can go and post a review. 
  • Add a Yelp review button to your email signature to ensure your audience will visit Yelp and leave a review.
  • Do not ask customers or mailing list subscribers to review your website. 
  • Don’t run any surveys asking customers to leave a review. 
  • Don’t offer a discount or any freebies in exchange for a review. 
While Yelp’s stern outlook on user reviews can be seen as a challenge by small businesses who are just trying to get noticed, it is all for good reason. Since people view Yelp as purely a review site, Yelp only allows those customer reviews that are worthy of being shared with the masses, and as mentioned earlier, it’s got an algorithm for that. Yelp advises all business owners to provide a memorable and amazing user experience that will encourage positive reviews, rather than asking your customers blatantly for posting a review on Yelp. 

Use a Comment Card

Some review sites such as TripAdvisor use comment cards that invite their customers to share their opinions online. This is a more down-low approach to asking your customers to leave a review on Yelp rather than being in their face about it. 

Make Use of "Widgets" and "Badges"

Review sites such as Yelp, offer widgets, also known as badges that can be added to a business’s website and used to encourage its visitors to review your business on Yelp. 

Focus on First Hand Reports

If you are using Yelp, it is important for you to play by the rules. Mainly because shortcuts do not work. Apart from being unethical, paying for reviews or trying to game the system could come back to haunt you, and that wouldn’t be good for business at all. 

Don’t Toot Your Own Horn

As a business owner it is important for you to never write a review of your business yourself, or ask your friends to do the same. Focus on check-in offers to get customers to review your business. 

Engage with Your Yelpers

Most important of all, it is crucial for you to engage with your Yelpers. Be active with all those who leave a review on your business on Yelp. Whether the reviews that are left are positive or negative, it is important for you to respond. Be polite and honest with a disgruntled customer, while appreciating the positive feedback of others. 

Don’t Take it Personally!

Also, always use the feedback you receive in Yelp reviews to further improve your product or services. Rather than keeping your guard up and being defensive, be open to criticism and constructive feedback that can help improve your business. 

Offer A Range Of Review Options

While there will be some customers who will take the time out and leave a review on your website, there will be others who will prefer to share their experience with your services on a familiar review site such as Yelp, or they may even want to share it with friends on social media sites. 

This is the reason why it is important for businesses to provide their customers with multiple options when it comes to leaving reviews online. This way, your customers will be able to leave a review on your product or service using the means they are most comfortable with. Since the user demographic of Yelp is spread across age groups, it is important to provide your customers with multiple outlets for them to leave a review on your business.

Also, having more than one listing for reviews on the search engine page means your business will take up more space on the SERPs, and that’s good for your online visibility.

Ending Note

For a business, there’s no need to be afraid of online reviews, just because of the fear of receiving negative reviews. 

While it’s true that all customer reviews that you receive on Yelp are not going to be positive, setting up a strategy to answer negative reviews will ensure that even the negative reviews left on Yelp do not have a negative impact on your business. In today’s competitive business environment, a business is able to grow quicker by getting happy customers to leave positive reviews all over the internet, rather than depending on the old strategy of making customers happy and then hoping that happy customer will leave a positive review online or spread the word of mouth. 

The responsible business owner does not only generate ways of getting positive reviews on review sites such as Yelp, but also has their finger on the pulse when it comes to what is being said about their business online, on review sites and social media forums, and then addressing any negative reviews before it is too late. Respond publicly rather than via private chat, and be honest.
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