Yelp Marketing 101

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Yelp is an increasingly useful tool to market your business to the current generation. With access to information of every kind at their fingertips, consumers are looking for great deals, great spaces, and positive experiences. This is true for every industry whether serving food or serving people, your business can soar or crash based on its online reputation. Proper Yelp marketing as an asset that any company can not afford to pass up.

Yelp receives approximately 165 million unique visitors per month, making it one of the most valuable resources for any small business. We will give you tips to successfully utilize Yelp marketing strategies in order to grow your business.

Yelp Marketing, Start Here

First things first: you need an account on Yelp. Chances are that your company has already been reviewed on Yelp or has at least been added to the directory. Here’s how to find your business or set one up:

Step One: Claim your Yelp business page.

The benefits of doing so mean you will be able to, add a link to your website, respond to customer reviews, offer exclusive deals and upload photos.

Follow these steps to claim your Yelp business listing.

  1. Use the search function on the Yelp for Business Owners page to find your company.
  2. Look for your listing on the drop-down menu that appears. When you find it, click the “Claim this business” button. In the event your business is not listed, click the “Add your business to Yelp”, then complete the form to add your listing.
  3. Fill out a form with your company name, email address, and password, and then click the “Continue” button.
  4. Click the “Call Me Now” button. Add your extension, if necessary.
  5. Authenticate your listing using Yelp’s phone verification process. Note: Make sure you are near the phone you listed on the form. That phone number will be called and you will be asked for the four-digit code that appears on the web page. Enter it into the telephone.
  6. Yelp will unlock your account giving you access to your business page.
  7. You’re ready to start marketing on Yelp!

2. Give Customers the Right Information

Put yourself in the customer’s’ shoes. What information would you want when looking at a business online?  Business name, address, phone number, and hours of operation are a must.

Also, add any information that is helpful to the consumer. For example, a restaurant might add Happy Hour times. A doctor’s office might note any unusual closures like holidays.

Provide as much information as possible to aid people who may be searching for companies like yours. Having updated details also helps Google and Bing return correct information when people conduct local searches that relate to your business category.

3. Engage with Customer Reviews

yelp marketingWe can’t overemphasize this enough. It is imperative that you frequently read and respond to customer reviews. People are choosing whether to visit your establishment based on the reviews and ratings that you have received from former customers. The more positive reviews you receive, the higher you will rank on the site. This higher the rankings, the more traffic to your business and ultimately the larger your bottom line.

Be aware that you will receive poor reviews – everyone does. Simply consider negative reviews as feedback for how you can improve.

You can respond to customer reviews in two forms: via a private message, a public comment that everyone can see. Private messages are great for responding to someone who has left a negative review, while public comments allow you to correct misinformation that may pop up on a review.

Never argue with a customer via public posts. This will damage the public’s perception of your business more so than the negative review.

Don’t forget to thank those that write positive comments as well. This will continue to build a raving reputation for you and your business.

4. Harness the Power of Photos

Surging social platforms like SnapChat and Instagram are clear indications that people love photographs.

Make sure you take the time to post good quality photos to your business page. They don’t need to be professional photos but do make sure the shots have good lighting, are in focus, and showcase your business. Clean offices, friendly people, and delicious looking food are always winnings pictures.

5.  Promote Your Yelp Site

Now that you’ve spent all this time setting up your Yelp account, drive people to your Yelp page. Let the customers do the Yelp marketing for you.

  • Add a Yelp button or badge to your company website
  • Put a link to Yelp in email signatures
  • Place a link to Yelp in your email newsletters
  • Add a Yelp sticker to your store window
  • Encourage customers to “check-in” using Yelp’s mobile app when they visit your store or place of business.
  • Ask customers to write a review and post pictures

According to Yelp’s Business advertising page, 82% of Yelp users visit intending to buy a product or service and 89% of those who buy do so within a week. All of those potential buyers are looking for a business that has the highest ratings and best reviews. Don’t miss out on this incredible small business tool; with a little upfront planning, you’ll reap the benefits of successful Yelp marketing. If however, you find your to-do list too overwhelming, have our team at PayTech take over the time-consuming and mind-numbing tasks so that you can devote your time to these Yelp marketing strategies. PayTech can help with payroll, HR, and the ever-daunting tax and accounting process. Check out our website here.

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