So are we… so we did a little homework and created this post to help you stop the madness!
One of the greatest issues that small business have with Yelp it its review filter. Business owners complain that while good reviews are filtered out; bad reviews always pass the review filter. While this is an increasing problem, Yelp is still one of the best websites to give consumers relevant reviews.
The Yelp filter is a catch 22 of sorts. It limits a small businesses ability to convert a customer’s enjoyable experience into a positive review. It also allows their competition to create fake reviews and allows one person’s bad experience to carry a lot of weight. Here are a few tips to help gain positive Yelp reviewers.
How Does Yelp Determine A Spam Review?
Many businesses do not understand the criteria Yelp uses to determine whether a review is spam or legitimate. Yelp actively tries to remove fake reviews by using a variety of criteria to filter them. The criteria includes:
- Reviews that have a strong positive or negative slant
- Submissions that come from a different location than where the business is located
- People without profile information Reviews that are brief and without any details
- Reviews from people who do not have a history of writing Yelp reviews
Yelp’s Review Filters Also Remove Legitimate Reviews
On its face, Yelp’s review criteria seem effective. However, it also removes positive reviews that are an asset to a business. To help combat these issues, businesses are encouraged to request reviews from their email list, Twitter followers and customers.
Issues will arise if customers do not have an existing history as a Yelp user. These people do not establish a full profile and post reviews that will be seen as slanted. As previously stated, these types of reviews will be caught by the Yelp filter.
How to Get Positive Review Past the Yelp Filter
There are a few tricks you can do to help your positive reviews most past Yelp’s filter. Usually, interacting with the Yelp reviewer will make this possible. Here are few suggestions:
- Write a response to the review
- Rate the review as “funny” or “useful”
- Friend the reviewer
- Write to the reviewer
This is something that you can, and should, do for every positive review that is left on Yelp. For added effect, have more than one person in the business interact with the reviewer. You can request that friends and clients create a profile that Yelp will not filter.
How Your Friends and Clients Can Avoid the Dreaded Filter
There are things you can encourage your friends and customer to do if Yelp is filtering reviews. Ask them to complete their Yelp profile and leave reviews often.
Leaving more reviews will help to prevent them from getting blocked. It will also help put the review higher up in the search results. Here is what you can do to help your friends avoid the filter.
Write Several Yelp Reviews
Pick 10 local businesses and write Yelp review for them. Leave an honest review of your favorite business. Realistically, the experience can fall along the entire 1 to 5–star spectrum.
Connect Your Yelp Account to Facebook
Doing this takes some effort and helps to prove that the review is a legitimate one. Connecting the two accounts also allows you to send invites to your friends.
Invite your friends through email of Facebook to join Yelp. Then make an effort to interact with their reviews. Accounts on Yelp that have friends are more likely to be seen as real ones.
Download the Yelp App
Use your mobile device to check into the Yelp app. Doing this makes the reviews more legitimate and less likely to be considered spam.
Write Reviews Over Time
If you are new to Yelp, space out your reviews. Build a reputation on Yelp over time.
Do More Than Leave Reviews
Add some tips or advice to a Yelp review. By doing this you are taking your level of interaction to the next. It also shows you can do more than leave critiques.
Is Soliciting Yelp Reviews a Good Way to Avoid Filters?
While soliciting good reviews is frowned upon, there is nothing wrong with asking for a review. Use social media outlets to engage with your customers to seek Google+ and Yelp reviews. If you have a following on Facebook and Twitter, chances are they think favorably of your business.
Never pay for positive reviews on Yelp. They will notify the public that you attempted to do this. Using the guidelines above will help you create positive reviews that make it past the Yelp filter. When using these tips, do not forget that it is also important to create a pleasant experience for your customers. A great experience will yield positive reviews.
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