Archive for July 11th, 2013

5 Ways to Combat Negative Reviews on Yelp.


Love it or hate it, Yelp and its reviews will be around for a while. As a business, for every positive review you can pat yourself on the back for, you’ll agonize ten times as much for each negative post. Negative reviews affect your business’ overall Yelp rating and this is the first thing users see associated to your company’s Yelp listing. As an avid Yelp user, I know firsthand that how customers perceive you, can influence a purchasing decision among new customers and even existing ones.


Picture this, you’re with a bunch of friends looking for a place to eat after the movies. You whip out your phone and pull up your Yelp app to take a look for nearby restaurants. You find a couple suggestions that you run by them and the first thing they ask…well how many stars did those places get? In other words, they are already programmed to screen out those listings with weaker ratings and reviews. It happens all too often to the frustration of many businesses since it’s not something they can easily control. But unless something drastic happens, Yelp is here for the long haul and it’s up to businesses to embrace it and make the most of it. Here are 5 ways to combat negative reviews on Yelp:

1. Take ownership. It’s important to“claim this business.” By doing so, you’ll be able to respond to those who have given you a weak review in a public forum so that future users can see you’re working to fix the problem.


2. Fix it. After addressing the reviewer, the obvious thing to do when someone posts a negative comment is to fix the problem. For example….a steak dish that doesn’t pair well with brussel sprouts? Perhaps you should think about using onions. The varnish you use for your particular wood products too light? Maybe you should look into a heavier coat. However, it doesn’t make any business sense to throw out all of your wood products because one reviewer thought the varnish coat was too light. But you should at least make the effort to resolve any problems or areas of concern within reason.

3. Flag it. Flag any false reviews. False reviews are not permitted by Yelp and can be flagged for removal. A false review can be a post that is hearsay or even one that is misleading such as telling users that the bikes at a certain shop are of poor quality when the shop actually serves Korean food. See where I’m going with this?


4. Get the most out of Yelp. As a business you can subscribe to an array of tools that can help bring more customers through the door. With each customer or in this case “Yelper,” there creates an opportunity to boost your overall rating. If you don’t want to wait that long to build that audience, you can even partner with Yelp to participate in Yelp events where majority of those attending are active Yelpers. Put on your best showing at these events and watch your overall ratings grow through the volume of patrons.

5. Create a following. Build your reputation through other social media sites such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. If your business can build its community and establish itself within local social groups, active Yelp reviewers are more than likely to go a little easier on their reviews than a non-social establishment.  To put it simply, you don’t want to be talking trash about everyone’s friend.


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