Yelp came out a few weeks ago blasting “reputation management companies” and people that use these companies. They went so far as to update their algorithm to try to “catch” businesses who are using reputation management companies. They sent letters to these management companies and to the businesses they flagged for using them.
This is a copy of a communication that yelp will send to you if you are flagged for using a reputation management company, or for soliciting reviews.
But typical with these types of issues, it was loud for 1 week and has basically been forgotten, with no more Yelp announcements on it.
Many local business owners either missed this all together, or are now even more up in arms about their feelings toward Yelp.
I have honestly only found a handful of business owners that actually like Yelp. Most feel that Yelp is an extortionist, a fraud, scam, etc.
I believe that Yelp is a great service for its users in the sense of providing business listings and reviews for those businesses. I use Yelp every week and multiple times a day when I travel.
But I believe that Yelp’s management has completely missed the boat on how to work with businesses. If businesses loved their experience with Yelp (if Yelp had its own Yelp page, the reviews would not be good, LOL), and if they loved the experience of working with Yelp’s support, they would spend more money with Yelp.
But websites have their right to their own Terms of Service and I do believe that people should use a website as its owner wants it used.
So we have launched “check-in” marketing. In addition to asking for feedback in the traditional form of reviews, we now give customers and patients the option to use the “check-in” feature.
The beauty of “check-in” marketing is when someone checks in on Yelp or Facebook, their friends on these apps see this in their notifications or newsfeed, as opposed to reviews, which are posted to the business’ profile (but unless they choose to share the Yelp review to Facebook or Twitter, isn’t seen).