Want to get more out of Yelp for your brick-and-mortar business? Below are five tips on how to get the most out of Yelp that will help you get started.
1. Verify Your Business Profile
If you haven’t verified your Yelp profile, this should definitely be your first priority. In order to verify your profile, find your listing on Yelp, and click the “Claim This Business” link on the right side of the page:
If this option isn’t available, look in the same location to see if there is an “edit” link under the hours of operation. If you click on that, the next screen should have a radio button to select that you are the owner of the business.
However, if the “Claim This Business” option isn’t there, it could mean that someone else has already claimed the business as their own, allowing them to edit the business listing information.
If you are absolutely positive that no one at your company claimed the listing (or a former employee did that you cannot contact for the login information), it’s important to work with Yelp to make sure the actual business is the “owner” of the listing.
Verifying Your Listing
To verify your listing, you’ll create a business account, and after proper verification (through the phone, in most cases), you’ll be allow to edit business information, add photos, and respond to reviews. Yelp will also send you regular metrics of how your business listing is doing (which you can also view on the Biz.Yelp.com dashboard):
This helps you take control of your listing, which will help you make sure your business information is accurate and complete.
2. Offer Online Ordering
For restaurants (and eventually other categories), Yelp began offering online ordering and delivery via businesses’ listing pages in 2013:
While online ordering isn’t offered in every city, all restaurants and eventually other businesses that this option is available for, should be considering it. This is just another way to customers to connect with your business. If available, sett it up in the business dashboard.
3. Offer Special Discounts
One feature that almost any business can take advantage of on Yelp is the opportunity to offer Yelp-exclusive discounts. Because Yelp users can search for businesses based on if they offer a special deal or not, this is a great way to entice users to chose your business over another that isn’t offering a deal:
Out of each Yelp deal voucher sold, Yelp takes 30%. Custom deals can be created, and merchants can set limits on how many vouchers are sold. This is free to set up in the biz.yelp.com dashboard.
While not all businesses want to (or can even afford) to allow Yelp to take 30% of their profits on an already discounted deal, it may be worth trying to see if overall business profits improve due to increased foot traffic.
4. Make Sure You Have Great Photos
One great aspect of Yelp that both users and owners appreciate is the fact that both sides can upload photos of the business. Whether this is food offered at a restaurant, or the outside of a sporting goods store so it’s easier to identify, photos are a great way to Yelp users to get to know your business better.
Besides encouraging customers to upload photos of their own experiences at your business, you should also make sure you have some great, professional shots taken as well. Along with the outside of your building (which makes it easier to find for first-timers), upload a few shots of areas that are of interest to your customers- a shaded patio, or customized fitting room, for example.
Highlighting what your business has to offer can make it seem more enticing, especially when compared to a business that has little to know photos.
5. Respond to Positive and Negative Feedback
Yelp is a great opportunity to offer customer service. Yelp allows business owners to respond to reviews via a private inbox system (like an internal email service). Whether a review is positive or negative, it helps build community and trust to respond to reviews in a positive, constructive manner.
If the review is negative, make the effort to find out how to make it right. Likewise, if it’s positive, thank them for being a customer and mention something specific about their review so they know you pay attention to what they had to say (instead of sending the same generic response to everyone).
When it comes down to it, customers like to feel heard, and Yelp has grown in popularity because it allows them to do just that. Focus on providing a complete listing with information, photos, deals, and additional services, and you may just find that Yelp can be a huge driver to your business.