- Posted by Nigel Edelshain
- On September 25, 2012
Wondering what Yelp is and how it can affect your business?
Yelp is a rating site for businesses of all sorts, from restaurants to remodeling companies. Consumers can log in from their computer or smart phone to seek out suggestions of highly rated local businesses and leave their own ratings and reviews. Yelp has over 78 million visitors each month.
A recent study conducted by two economists at the University of California, Berkeley showed that Yelp ratings can directly impact a local business’s revenue. The researchers studied 300 restaurants in the San Francisco area. They found that a restaurant that moved from 3.0 stars to 3.5 stars in Yelp’s ratings went from selling out its prime dining times 13% of the time to selling out 34% of the time – a significant difference in revenue.
I didn’t know I have a Yelp Page!
Even if you’ve never visited the site before, you may be surprised to see that your business already has a Yelp page and may have even garnered reviews.
Yelp gathers data from its users and third-party sources about local businesses, so it’s possible to have a listing before you’ve ever visited the site. Fortunately, it’s simple to claim your business page so you can update information and respond to user reviews.
In general, ratings on Yelp tend to be positive. 38% of all ratings on the site are 5 stars, and only 11% are 1 star. Yelp users who give 5 star reviews tend to write about customer service and use the words “nice,” “friendly” and “helpful.”
However, if you see a negative review and are concerned about it, Yelp allows you to respond to the reviewer and address their issues directly.
Local business owners should be aware of how their business is being rated and reviewed on Yelp. Ignoring the site and its 78 million monthly visitors is not the best strategy. Actively monitoring and engaging with Yelp reviewers is much more likely to produce the best outcome for your business.