OK, so I am sure you have heard of Yelp. If you have not heard about it or just don’t know how yelp can break or make your business, do yourself and your small business a huge favor – visit yelp.com and look up your business rating.
In fact Yelp brings in more NEW customers in your small business than Google – For FREE. Yes, Google is definitely a place you have to be, but if you own a bar, café, or restaurant you should focus more on yelp if your business goal is to bring in new customers.
If you have been in business and open for a while its very likely you are listed on yelp and maybe have some customer reviews. Some bad, some average, and some good. Without saying, more positive reviews equals more stars which in turn gets you new customers, business, and more money!
Yelp is one of the most powerful website that plays a major role in increasing or decreasing your online reputation. Positive reviews can drive 20% -30% of your business, so its important to make sure each and every positive review is factored in to make up the best overall stars rating.
The key to better your rating is to move positive reviews stuck in yelp’s recommendation software that filters inactive and unauthentic positive reviews. Moving few five-star reviews from filter to a main page can increase 3 stars to 4 stars.
If your business is rated 3 stars or less on yelp, your business is suffering.! Follow the proven ways listed below to increase your star rating.
#1. Understand and Fix Negative Reviews
If you have many negative reviews, read through each of them and try to understand and find the pattern in those negative ratings. Maybe customers don’t like your service. Maybe customers are complaining about the payment options. Maybe dirty restrooms, maybe rude servers. Again, look for a pattern instead of focusing on individual negative reviews.
Once you find the reason for those negative reviews, first thing should be to work on fixing those issues. You can probably never eliminate negative reviews but you can reduce them. Once the issues are taken care of , try to reach out to those yelpers with negative reviews via Yelp messaging platform and invite them to visit your business again. Be honest and explain them about the changes you have made. Offer them a discount to entice them to give you another shot.
When they do visit again, and if things go well, you can always ask them to update their review from negative to positive.
#2. Help Yelp identify authentic users.
One of the fastest and easiest ways to increase your star ratings is to move stuck positive reviews marked as irreverent or inauthentic in yelps recommendation software. These positive reviews when stuck bear no value to overall rating. Your job should be to help identify these authentic users.
You can find these reviews at the bottom of your business page on yelp, right after the last review on the page.
Click on “ Other reviews that are not currently recommended”
The main reason these reviews are filtered is yelp marks these users as fake or spam. These are several ways you can have them authenticated.
Follow yelpers with positive reviews stuck in “not recommended” list. This should get the user on the authentic user list automatically, most of the time.
If following them does not work, message them using yelp messenger. You will have to be logged in as a business owner on yelp for this option to work. Let them know you appreciate the positive review but unfortunately that is not displayed in yelp. Request them to update their review.
If the options above did not have any significant impact on your ratings, message those yelpers requesting to prove yelps algorithm they are humans.
- Ask them to upload a picture.
- Add few friends on yelp.
- Check in on their cell phone while visiting business’
- Write more reviews
#3. Ask customers to write reviews
More positive reviews help mitigate occasional negative review’s effect on overall stars. Always ask your customer about their experience and based on their positive response request them if they can write a yelp review. If they are genuinely satisfied they will be more than happy to write a positive review.
It’s simple and gives you a great insight into customer satisfaction.
Hope this article helps small business’s harness the power of over 50 million yelpers!!