Let’s say you’ve amassed years worth of mostly positive reviews on your Yahoo Local listing. Then, all of a sudden, your Yahoo Local reviews disappeared and they aren’t showing – but Yelp reviews are showing instead.
This is exactly what happened to Dan Tringale, owner of Colonial Hardwood Flooring of Lexington, Mass. Tringale says his company had amassed six years of mostly positive reviews on Yahoo Local. But when a new deal between Yahoo and Yelp went into effect, all that changed.
A few weeks ago, Tringale estimates about 50 of his reviews on Yahoo Local disappeared in search as Yahoo started displaying Yelp reviews instead. Tringale tells the Wall Street Journal:
“It’s a slap in the face that they took all those reviews down overnight…It’s not easy to get 50 great reviews.”
If you were this business, you wouldn’t be happy. Yahoo says it’s in the interest of users. A spokeswoman told the Wall Street Journal:
“We partnered with Yelp, one of the most trusted, relevant sources of consumer business reviews, to provide a richer search experience for Yahoo users. . . That’s why when Yelp’s reviews are available for U.S. businesses, they will replace Yahoo Local reviews.”
But is this really in the interest of users of the site, if six years of good reviews are hidden from view just because of a deal Yahoo made with Yelp?
If you’re focused on getting online customer feedback, be sure to direct satisfied customers to Yelp, rather than other online feedback like Yahoo Local listings, for example.
In the first place, Yelp reviews are now featured prominently on major search engines including Google and Bing.
In the second, small businesses are discovering that, since the deal giving Yelp reviews a more prominent place in Yahoo search, Yelp reviews trump Yahoo’s own.