Yelp. What used to be an exclamation is now a multi-million user platform, with over 92 million unique consumer visits each month.
You know the drill. You’re trying to decide what to eat for dinner. So everyone fires up their Yelp, and searches for a restaurant with rave reviews, irresistible photos, and, at the very least, four stars. What might seem like an everyday process is crucial for a business trying to grow.
Grocery stores. Specialty shops. Big box chains. Mom and pop. No matter their scope, each and every business can be found on Yelp, and it would be remiss as a business owner to ignore how powerful a marketing tool this platform can be. Why does your business need Yelp reviews? Your future success might depend on them.
According to a Harvard Business School Study, a one-star increase alone on Yelp will lead to a 5-9% jump in revenue. That might be the difference between making it or breaking it as a business. And before visiting a business at all, 90% of people read an online review, with 88% of consumers trusting those reviews as much as they would hearing a review from someone they knew personally. Needless to say, the better the review, the more likely a customer is to spend their dollar power with that particular business. Your business needs Yelp reviews to foster consumer confidence, reputation, exposure, and more.
Contrary to what you might think, restaurants are not actually the dominant business on Yelp. Shopping reigns supreme at 23% of the businesses, with dining trailing at 19%, and home and local services at 12%. If you think your business might not be the right fit for Yelp, think again. In a 2018 survey, as many as 70% of people say that they look at rating filters for the purchases they’re making, industry-wide.
When you want more eyes on your business, Yelp is the place to turn. You might have the most well-designed, freshly made website out there. But you just can’t replicate the power of a review. Users are creating content for you, and Yelp Elite users write five times as much as an average account on Yelp. On the platform itself, individuals are encouraged to go as in-depth as possible with their writing. With 88% of people trusting those reviews, that’s an opportunity you can’t miss.
In a University of Maryland study, one man developed a system that analyzed the language being used on Yelp. Using this method, he tracked trends of negative language. With 70% accuracy, that tool was then able to determine if the business was going to shut down. Positive Yelp reviews, then, are crucial to keeping the doors open. In marketing, word of mouth is commonly thought to be the most powerful tool there is. Yelp is the digital word of mouth.
Yelp also comes equipped with built-in tools that allow you to hook your page up to your Analytics. From there, you can assess whether the reviews you’re getting are having a negative or a positive impact on your business. Yelp for Business also offers a Business Analytics page of its own, which gives you demographic information of users visiting your page. You can even see when someone uses the “call now” button.
This one works both ways – you need Yelp reviews to get Yelp gear, and you Yelp gear helps you get more Yelp reviews. You can request Yelp to send you a “Find Us on Yelp” window cling for your establishment, reminding people that they can check in and share their experience. Yelp also sends a “People Love Us on Yelp” decal for qualifying businesses, inviting people to check Yelp out and get in on what others are saying.
Getting good, real Yelp reviews starts with you, and not your users. A local Media Tracking Study revealed that 65% of people were more likely to connect with a local business after seeing a favorable review online.
No different than all other content, the copy on Yelp is primed and waiting to be SEO optimized. Using essential keywords related to your business is so essential to getting more reviews that Yelp itself offers overview guides on how to craft the SEO for your page.
Ask yourself the question: when it comes to my business, what will people be searching for? If you’re a handyman in California, people might be searching “reliable handyman in California.” From there, you can narrow it down and include keywords that would solve their problems: “fixing roof Shingles in Los Angeles.” With these points in mind, you can begin to build out your profile to attract more hits, get more business, and generate more reviews.
Speaking of building out your profile, optimized, relevant content always helps generate more hits. Ensure that your page has accurate information using your keywords, your address is listed, your phone number is written, and every section of your profile is filled out. Not only is it frustrating for a user when they can’t find information, when Google is indexing your page, the algorithm will be able to parse out if there is useful information being shared. The more complete your page is, the higher you may be ranked in search results.
If you want a good Yelp review for your business, one of the simplest things you can do is ask. One marketing analysis showed that for every $1 spent on influencers, businesses saw $6.50 in return. If you tell influencers that your business needs Yelp reviews and create an agreement with them asking for a review, the power of their following can also draw a significant amount of eyes to your page. However, make sure you’re selecting the right influencers. You can use free tools to check whether or not an influencer might have a strong, organic following.
Perhaps one of the most crucial – and even the most obvious – ways to get a good review? Have a good business. Customer service is always at the top of the list for things that drive guests to write a positive review. If someone is provided with outstanding service and you go out of the way for them, then they’re going to be more likely to go out of the way for you.
While Yelp might have built up its reputation as a place for people to go complain, 67% of Yelp users actually write a review with 4+ stars. You can carefully ask influencers to leave a genuine review of your business, but asking every single person you come into contact with in your business is not necessary. Your customer service should have already spoken for yourself and coerced guests to write a review on their own. If you get a negative review, it should promptly be responded to in a level manner. Many people viewing the negative comments might feel that your response is enough to mitigate them.
Feel like you’re juggling too many things at once? Maybe you’re thinking about how much you need to incorporate Yelp into your marketing strategy, but feeling overwhelmed. Luckily, at KITS creative, we’re expert jugglers. Hand the ball into our court, and we’ll optimize your experience through our clear, strategic messaging. Ready for your business to get the push it needs? View our services today.
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