While it may seem counterintuitive, Yelp has very strict policies about soliciting customers for reviews. Yelp even has a filter in place that is designed to catch reviews that are likely to be a product of a business soliciting reviews by putting their customers on the spot, or offering rewards. Yelp’s reasoning behind their policy is that ultimately, soliciting reviews will create an unfair bias towards a business because businesses are much more likely to solicit reviews from customers that have had a positive experience.
So how do you garner more Yelp reviews while playing by the rules? Try some of the following strategies:
Make Yelp’s Logo Visible at Your Place of Business and on Your Website
Yelp offers several tools to companies to help promote awareness. Once you have enough reviews, a menu item named “Review Badges” will pop up in the left hand navigation bar of your business page that will allow you to generate code that creates a custom Yelp badge that you can embed into your website. The Yelp badge will regularly update with review averages and counts. Yelp also allows you to create your own customized signage for your business via their brand assets page, or you can request pre-made signage via this form. Yelp also mails out “People Love Us On Yelp” stickers to qualifying businesses upon request. They can be displayed prominently in your shop window!
Do a Little Name-Dropping
While Yelp does not allow outright solicitation of reviews, increasing customer awareness of your presence on Yelp through word of mouth does not violate any of Yelp’s policies. When your customer has had a positive experience, make sure to mention that your business is on Yelp, and ask them to “connect with you” or “check out your profile.”
Share Yelp Reviews on Your Social Media
Social proof is powerful; sharing your positive reviews on your other social media channels such as Facebook and Twitter not only shows your audience that other people would recommend your business, it shows them that other people have taken the time to review your business, and makes them aware of your Yelp page. Once your fans see that others have reviewed you on Yelp, they will be more inclined to do the same.
Add Links to Your Email Signature, Social Media, and Blog
If you’re looking to give your Yelp profile an extra push, embed hyperlinks to your profile wherever you can say something along the lines of “Check Us Out on Yelp” or “Connect With Us on Yelp.” You can include links in your email signature, on your social media pages, and even at the end of your blog posts. Where there’s a link, there’s a way to send people to your Yelp profile!
Yelp can make a huge difference in how customers perceive your business long before they ever choose to use your services, so it’s worth investing the time and energy into garnering reviews. Just make sure to ask the right way, and take advantage of all the helpful tools Yelp has to offer!