YELP!!?? Makes me want to Yelp for Help
Over the years I have compared Google to God and also to Mario Brothers. If you played Mario Brothers you know that unless you had an experienced player nearby, you basically needed to move around the game board jumping up and down, hoping to hit your head against and invisible box. If you found these boxes, you’d be rewarded with coins. Google is very much like this.
However, Yelp seems to be hoping to outdo Google in this comparison, at least as it applies to reviews. Several of my clients have tried to get reviews posted on Yelp, and have had varying degrees of success. One in particular, a very talented orthodontist in Westchester, CA., had 3 reviews “showing” on Yelp, but 8 reviews that were “filtered.” If you are a Yelp subscriber and you know about this, you can click a box and see the filtered reviews. If you are not a member, forgetaboutit.
So she had 8 of her clients go to the trouble to sign up at Yelp, fill out the reviews, but basically nobody is seeing these reviews. To make matters worse, Google Places is once again showing Yelp reviews, and of course, that would only be the unfiltered variety.
A few months ago, as a result of a lawsuit filed against them, Yelp made a statement that they were employing robotic methods of filtering their reviews. But, of course, the couldn’t share these methods for fear that businesses would game the system. However, the did allow that individuals who only had done three or fewer reviews would not likely have their reviews front and center. Four was the magic number.
But it turns out that my orthodontist client had two reviews from reviewers with SIX current review on Yelp. I called Yelp.
We can all agree with the rep I talked to. Yelp wants real reviews from real consumers. They believe that active reviewers are more likely to be folks who have not been solicited to do reviews by the owners of the businesses. All well and good. But SIX reviews and still filtered. So the rep looks at the status and says: “Well the reviewer has not uploaded a picture of themselves, and they haven’t friended any other Yelp members.” And the plot thickens.
So, the reality here is that if you want to get reviews on Yelp, you are going to have to get folks to not merely sign up, but become truly active workers for Yelp. How great is this for them. Maybe there is a business opportunity here in setting up folks to do reviews on Yelp.
By the way. There are two other tricks to Yelp. One, you can now respond to negative reviews. Two, if you are a member, you can “Flag this review.” It does require that you give a reason for flagging it, but the rep assures me that the flagging process can result in reviews being taken off.
Personally, I am boycotting Yelp. If you feel that your company seriously needs traffic from Yelp, I will do everything I can to help you get multiple reviews there, and take care of negative reviews. But I think they are hurting businesses more than they are helping them.
I’d love to hear from you about your experience with Yelp. Review the Reviewer time.
Popularity: 41% [?]