Why Yelp Will Not Help – Small Businesses

Comments: 13

  • I’ve been wondering if reviews on Yelp are really credible.. and if Amazon reviews are more reliable. Then again, the Web is littered with fake profiles who write positive/negative reviews about brands X,Y,Z that you start to wonder if you should trust your own judgment instead when shopping for something online. I have to agree with you on providing great customer service though – because that will be the line that will define brand advocates vs those who are simply stopping by.

  • Marissa, online reviews like any user-generated content is a slippery slope. The best advice is to diversify your listings and have a clear strategy of how to best promote your inbound love.

    There are two other articles posted on B2C you may be interested in that complement this: http://ow.ly/hkThj AND http://ow.ly/hkTD6

    I would love to hear back from you after you’ve had time to consider these other articles.

    Thanks again for commenting!

  • Hi Chris,

    I completely understand your frustration with Yelp based on your story. However, based on my experience, I don’t believe your situation is the norm.

    We haven’t encountered the same issues you have while monitoring/maintaining Yelp pages for 10 of our clients. To this date, no reviews have been “filtered” (removed). Not one. The review sorting does change from time-to-time as usual: sometimes a 5-star review will be listed first and sometimes a low review will be listed first. The businesses we work with use the reviews to address any shortcomings and improve their services. It’s been a positive all around.

    It’s unfortunate when you said in your previous Yelp article that, “most of the small businesses I know have all been hit by the dreaded ‘Yelp filtered review’.” This just hasn’t been the case for my clients and other business owners I network with. How many businesses are you referring to?

    By the way, I thought your recent “Leave That Google Review Alone!” article was excellent. We shared it via Twitter.

    Thanks for starting the conversation.

  • Brett – thanks for the dialog.

    “Unfortunate”? I don’t know about that – just my experience. I have found that most of my clients and other businesses I have spoken either networking or through instruction have experienced at leas one filtered review.

    Most of the time review filtering occurs for one of the reasons mentioned in the article. New reviewers with thin profiles and lack of history are the usual culprits. That said, I have observed that as they increase their review counts and put some detail into their profiles their reviews are set free. It’s just a royal pain of a process – all too common and well published.

    Hey, I noticed you have 10 mentions of Yelp on you website (Saw you even provide Yelp management as a service) – glad to see it’s working well for you and your clients.

    Thanks for the kinds words.

  • Fleur says:

    This is completely 100% our experience. We are still waiting to hear a response from yelp why 99% of our reviews are hidden. It all started when we ‘claimed’ our business on yelp.
    Such a shame.

  • jane says:

    Our small biz was also punished by the Yelp filter whip after our third week in biz. I was then hounded by Yelp to purchase a subscription at a cost of 300 a month. wow, Yelp has nerve I will give you that.

  • WOW – Jane! Sadly, I’ve heard this story time-and-time again. Even paid accounts get filtered, I’m curious to hear if your problem cleared up after subscribing to Yelp’s services – if that was the route you took. You can get a lot of multi-channel marketing for that $300 pr month…

  • Guys, My company got absolutely killed by yelp. I run a test prep company and I had a woman whose son increased his SAT score by 200 points demand her money back! Her school told me she was crazt and not to worry about it. HOWEVER thanks to Yelp, she has managed to singlehandedly take down by business. How, she wrote a scathingly scandalous and untrue review. Yelp refused to believe me. Meanwhile, they filter all 12 of my positive reviews from REAL CLIENTS! Since YELP is so good at marketing itself, that bad review comes up first in every search. It has killed my business. We are a company with the highest educational and ethical standards, and one woman with a grudge and one company with no conscience has managed to destroy us.

  • PS – Sorry for the typos!

  • Ona says:

    We are going thru this right now. My boyfriend just opened a new restaurant and Yelp has filtered half the reviews. Of course those are some of the best reviews. He had a customer (who happens to be a local politician in the small community and fellow business owner) contact him to let him know that the review she wrote was missing. Upon searching, we found it in the filtered section. This lady was a long time Yelp customer and had many reviews, some good and some bad, for various local businesses. They did leave the review from a person making libelous claims who opened the account just to make the false claims. Of course, this is all happening while Yelp sales people call every other day trying to sell him a advertising package for money money than his new business can afford.

  • M. Williamson says:

    Yelp is a for profit company this has nothing to do with free speech, it is free speech manipulation, businesses should be given the freedom to take themselves off someone else’s FOR PROFIT listing, why do we as business owners need to sacrifice our good will so another business can make money off our good name? they should be paying us royalties just like the record industry if we give them permission to use our businesses to help their business make money, why do we need to be the sheep that are sacrificed so another can profit from harming our good will and our hard work? Do Not ever give up the fight on this issue! NEVER!! The laws must change!! Small claims court comment while under oath about yelp >> http://sfist.com/2013/07/22/video_angry_defendant_bashes_yelps.php

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