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Is Yelp More Useful for Companies or Is It Having a More Negative Effect on Consumers?

We live in a cynical world, but at PopClickle we like to see the good in everything. Bare with us as we take a look at one of the most controversial review sites in the market place. Love them or Hate them, they are around...they are Yelp.

What is Yelp?

Yelp markets itself as the place to determine whether an establishment is good or bad without actually going to the place and having the intended experience there. While it touts itself as a neutral third-party review website, it is still vulnerable to misuse and misrepresentation by reviewers with an agenda.Yelp responds to its weakness by using a review filter that supposedly keeps out the intensely angry and overly-eager positive reviews. To the Yelp review filter, extremes are ones they have to filter out since no experience can be that polarized. Irregular or first-time reviews that meet their red flags don’t work at all.

So how can Yelp damage your company?

Opens you up to aggressive negative marketing. Since anyone can give a review, your competition can begin a movement against you.Gives an obscured view of your company. People might find it difficult to understand your brand when you have reviews that damage you.

How can Yelp support your company?

It’s essentially free marketing. Your customers become your marketers and give a third-party view of your company.You clearly identify pain points and can address them quickly. Conducting customer surveys can bog down your client experience. But a strong brand that compels consumers to talk about it provides you with invaluable information on what you can improve about your company.You gain more new customers. People who use Yelp as a decision-making tool are usually new customers—so this is one of the best ways to get new clients for your company.You build up your brand. Yelp gives your customers a way to become brand ambassadors for you—in just one review.But why put yourself through all the trouble of reading and watching your Yelp reviews? The simple answer is that most consumers rely on these reviews and so you should at least think of it as a necessary evil. You cannot control Yelp reviews but what you can control is your customer experience.

Brand experience + awesome customer service

Interestingly, giving customers their expected experience isn’t what’s going to get you good Yelp reviews. Sending a brand message that’s unique and client-friendly is what’s going to override the bad reviews. What most companies that want to use Yelp don’t understand is that good customer service is a must-have while a brand experience is what can set you apart. A winning combination of both can help you get good reviews.

Drown out the bad with the good

In the end, it’s important that you don’t stake your entire customer evaluation scheme on Yelp. But it’s also necessary for you to take these reviews into consideration. Trusting the review filter may not be reassuring for you but even the best customer service cannot please everyone—some people literally live to destroy companies and brands. It’s up to you to build a loyal consumer base to drown out these voices in favour of the genuine clients.