While the value of review sites can be debated, our customers turn to them often when they are unfamiliar with our restaurant or business. People post reviews for many reasons; they are looking for free rewards, they want to be considered an expert or perhaps they are just being helpful. There are even those with a mean spirit that just try to make things difficult for sales and marketing efforts just because they feel like a stick in the mud.
Yelp – a local business review app
Honest Yelp reviews are good for the business and the consumer. We all fear those negative reviews but often there is something to be learned from the experience. It is a best practice to respond to your reviews timely.
Manage and respond to all reviews – don’t avoid the negative ones and be sure to recognize the positive posters with a hearty thanks.
A study from Harvard Business School, showed that restaurants will see a 5% to 9% increase in revenue if their Yelp rating increases by just one star.
Yelp has a great 4 minute video on responding to reviews – take a look for some great tips.
Create or claim your Yelp business account to get started managing your business’ Yelp reviews
Visit Yelp Business Owners page and click ‘Claim Your Business’ button at the bottom.
Search for your business name:
- No listing? Click Add Business to Yelp. Complete the information and await confirmation email.
- Already unlocked? This means someone has already claimed your business listing. Your listing will say, Already Claimed.
- Unlock: Enter your first and last name, email and create a password.
Complete all information possible. Check your business information and update any changes needed. Be sure your hours, map location, website address, phone and address are correct.
Optimize your listing:
Use keywords in the description of your specialties, history and owner’s summary.
Add Photos and your Logo
Spread the news about your Yelp profile with these ideas:
- Promote Yelp on your restaurant’s website
- Put a link to Yelp in your employee’s email signatures
- Place a link within your newsletters
- Put a link to Yelp in a diner’s emailed receipt and ask them to share their experience
- Encourage check-ins
- Consider Yelp promotion opportunities (this is optional and not required)
Check your Yelp Activity
Your Yelp activity can show the number of users that viewed and interacted with your profile. You can also download a mobile app to respond to reviews on the move.
Yelp can be a great tool in your digital marketing tool box. Certainly not the only too – add surveys, good old fashion suggestion boxes, SMS or text surveys and/or live chat features. Also, monitor your social media for mentions of your brand, products and services. Reward your loyal customers to earn more positive reviews.
Would you like help with your customer reviews? Our digital marketing team can assist you with managing your review or training. Remember your customers are leaving reviews – you really should manage the communications for the best image possible for your local business.