• How to Use Yelp for Your Small Business

How to Stand Out on Yelp

If you’re already running a Yelp page for your business, you’re taking advantage of an outlet that can drastically increase your visibility and reputation.  If you don’t have a Yelp page yet, what are you waiting for? Yelp is one of the most popular platforms for customers to look up local businesses and decide whether or not to purchase a product or service. Yelp can be a strong asset to your business if you maintain your page’s activity, manage your reviews, and optimize your account. Check out the tips below to make sure you’re taking advantage of some of the ways that Yelp can bring you more customers.

Claiming and Setting Up Your Business on Yelp

Online directories are an effective way to gain more visibility and find the right audience for your business. Before creating a page for your business, search Yelp to see if someone has already made a page for your account. If your business isn’t listed on Yelp yet, getting your business on Yelp only takes a few minutes and the results are priceless. If someone has already created an account for your business, Yelp gives business owners the opportunity to “unlock” and claim their business page. This allows the business owner to take control over posting on and managing the page instead of the original creator.

Related: How to Set Up and Maintain Directory Listings

Getting Activity on Your Yelp Page

A Yelp page is great to have, but it’s only helpful if you’re getting reviews from your customers! Both the number of reviews and the quality of the reviews for your business contribute to how high your business is ranked in Yelp’s search results. Although getting positive reviews is something your business will be vying for, remember that there’s a difference between encouraging your customers to leave reviews, and encouraging your customers to leave positive reviews. Yelp has set up filters to prevent reviews from being published if they seem too “staged” or as if someone was told to write something specific.

Consider following up with customers after they’ve purchased a good or service from your business and ask them to check out your Yelp page. If you’re still a little confused about proper etiquette for getting unbiased Yelp reviews, take a look at these steps to get more business from Yelp.

Many businesses have special promotions or gifts for customers who leave Yelp reviews. This is good for a few reasons: it encourages people to buy your product or service, it incentivizes your customers to leave reviews, and it helps your business rank higher on Yelp and gain more visibility.

Managing Your Reviews on Yelp

Your business’s Yelp account, much like any other asset to your business, has the chance to be both a blessing and a curse. When customers leave positive reviews, that’s awesome! It’s going to help your business’s overall ranking on Yelp and put your business on the radar of a potential audience. Unfortunately, not every review that’s left will be as positive as you’d like, but don’t get discouraged. No company is perfect, and it gives you more credibility to have honest reviews rather than only positive reviews. There are also plenty of ways to manage negative customer reviews and turn them into positives. Some of these strategies include:

  • Staying on top of your reviews
  • Taking action with the negative reviews
  • Responding quickly and professionally
  • Staying honest and not prompting friends, family, and customers to leave good reviews

Tracking Your Business on Yelp

If you’re looking for a way to track how much Yelp is aiding your business, consider getting a tracked phone line for your Yelp account. A tracked phone line allow you to gauge a caller’s overall interest in your business by showing you the caller’s name, phone number, and duration of the call. Having a tracked phone line on Yelp will allow you to get a better idea of who is finding your company and contacting your from your Yelp page.

Optimizing Your Yelp Business Page

Once your account is created it’s time to start adding content such as information about your business and photos of your product or service. When you optimize your page with content, not only are you showing what your business does, but you’re also helping improve your business’s ranking on search engines and increasing visibility among your audience. Information to always keep public and up-to-date includes:

  • Location
  • Contact information
  • Website
  • Hours of Operation

When you’re registering your business on Yelp, you’ll have to select what type of business you are. This will group you together with other companies in your industry and give you the chance to stand out against your direct competitors when results are returned. Additionally, photos on your Yelp account are a great way to optimize your page, and don’t be afraid to get creative!

If you’re a catering company or restaurant, photos of your favorite dishes are the way to go. If you’re a gym, try posting before and after pictures of clients (with their permission), or post pictures of your newest equipment. Another option is to post pictures of your storefront to make it easier for customers to identify your location, or post pictures of your business’s interior so customers can get a sense of your store’s ambiance before they even set foot inside!

Search companies similar to yours on Yelp and see what kinds of photos they’re posting and what reviews their customers are leaving. Use this research to think about what you can do to stand out from your competition and be seen as a leader in the industry. Is there something that their customers say is missing from one company, but that your company can provide to fill that gap? Or is there something that the customers seem to love that you haven’t thought of incorporating into your business yet? Use similar Yelp accounts to improve your business and your own Yelp page, and make sure to keep updating your Yelp page and following up with customers as often as possible.

ThriveHive combines easy-to-use tools and expert guidance to help businesses stand out and get found online. Learn more about our guided marketing and advertising solutions here.

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