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  • Local Business + Yelp App + iPhone = Money

    Local Marketing  

    Jun 14 2009
    Yelp - For Local Reviews

    Yelp - For Local Reviews

    Local marketing bliss is what I want to share! For those of you who own a local business, how would you like to get your business on the first page of Google today? In most cases, you will achieve top 5 results with out any real SEO! What if I told you, that you could achieve these types of rankings without having a website. You would jump on the opportunity right? Of course you would, so here are instruction on how to capitalize:

    I, like many other people own an iPhone and have downloaded the Yelp app (a local review service). This app has an amazing feature that allows you to search for businesses and reviews near you. What I have discovered is that most local businesses are not even listed, nor are there any reviews. I had a blast over the weekend reviewing all the places I ate at during a little trip. (Most of these businesses did not have any reviews prior to mine.) So, if you own a local business, even if you do not have a website, you need to get your business listed and reviewed on Yelp.

    Let me show you some pictures that should illustrate what I am talking about. Lets say you are out and about, visiting a new town, and looking for a place to eat. You get out your iPhone and open up the Yelp application. You will see in most of the listings, there are no reviews. What’s even better is when you do a regular search on Google for these businesses names (Or ethnic food + city etc) you will get a Yelp listing in the top 2 or 3. I have found the places I tend to pick to eat at are the ones that have reviews. I really want to see what other people thought of the place, and then I will generally add my two cents after I have experienced the restaurant. This application can be powerful for you = Big potential foot traffic booster!!

    Yelp App For iPhone

    Yelp App For iPhone

    You will see in this picture that the app allows you to search for almost anything nearby. So even if you don’t own an eating establishment, you still need to be on Yelp.

    Yelp application helps find local reviews

    Yelp application helps find local reviews

    It is pretty easy to add a review from the application. You can upload photos, write reviews, and a bunch of other stuff. Most of the Yelp listings are already ranking well in Google, so the minute you add your review so will all that new information you posted. Your information, right there – on the top of Google and you paid nothing for it!

    Adding a business review on Yelp

    Adding a business review on Yelp

    Let me illustrate just how easy it is to write a review on Yelp. First, you make your star rating and then include your draft. You can also publish your “app review” to your Yelp account once you are online and signed into your regular Yelp account.

    Drafting a review on Yelp

    Drafting a review on Yelp

    Here is an example of a high-ranking Yelp listing on Google when searching for a business name. See the Yelp listing ranks well, and your business could be ranking with it, whether you have a website or not. You will get actual customers from people who find you online through the Yelp application.

    Yelp Google Results

    Yelp Google Results

    I have talked with several business owners who tell me they get loads of visitors because of Yelp. How do they know? They ask. Any time a customer comes in they find out if it was their first time, and why they came in. Many times, they are told that a Yelp review prompted them to give the place a shot. Don’t miss out on this free money maker! I am telling you to get your business listing on Yelp and start to learn and understand local review sites and mobile applications.

    I know I am not the only guy that will snap a couple shots of the food I am eating and draft a review after my experience. This is also a great strategy for working on your business’s reputation management. You need to monitor what people are saying about your business and make it easy for those who enjoy your business to get online and tell others about their experiences.

    This last picture is just to show you what the business listing looks like on Yelp. I want to point out that business review I posted and the new pictures I included are already getting views, because the Yelp listing for the business is already ranking. It is instant gratification for local business owners!

    What A Yelp Listing Looks Like

    What A Yelp Listing Looks Like

    Of course, Yelp is not the only local review site out there, in fact, there are more then you can keep count of. But, Yelp is one of the few that rank well and therefore the one you should start with, but be warned, do not go and start filling out your own reviews.  The Yelp review filter (annoying as it is to some) is pretty good and can sniff out bad or fake reviews.

    Anyone have success stories with Yelp they would like to share? I would love to hear comments from people who have used Yelp, and can help businesses do more taking advantage of this service! Thanks in advance.

    • http://blog.mycollegesandcareers.com Brandon Buttars

      Yeah I love Yelp. I have a similar app on my G1 called “Where” that allows me to identify places to eat, shop, or whatever. Then I can add my reviews. Yelp is growing and is one of those networks that you would be stupid to not get involved in.

      Brandon Buttars’s last blog post..Careers in the Health Care Industry

    • http://www.dreamsystemsmedia.com/mat-siltala.aspx Mat Siltala

      @Brandon Buttars
      I couldn’t agree more, and you hit the point of this post on the head – Yelp is not all that is out there. There are many other local review sites and apps to boot. My point is to realize that as a business owner, you need to be aware of them and what they are and do more. Take advantage of what is hot. Yelp is ranking well right now and sending huge traffic. Take advantage of it! Thanks Brandon!

    • http://www.logonav.com Brian McLaughlin

      I love this line of thinking. That is where we are headed, however we have a ways to go. We wanted to simplify finding local businesses, and I think we’ve done that. Now we need to focus on traffic, and rolling the Yelp API into the mix. Our url doesn’t help, which is why we’re changing it to http://www.ALocalTouch.com which I think will do wonders. Clearly local is a great place to be for applications, perhaps we can deliver on what you are asking for.

    • http://www.dreamsystemsmedia.com/mat-siltala.aspx Mat Siltala

      @Brian McLaughlin
      I will give it a look when you got something! Thanks for commenting!

    • http://brickmarketing.com/search-engine-optimization-firm.htm Nick Stamoulis

      These types of applications are only going to grow in power as time goes on. I found some for the Android T1 recently that are amazing.

    • http://www.jaephlec.com Jason Fleck

      Great article. I use Yelp all the time on my iPhone, but never post reviews. Guess I might have to start :).

      Tweeted: http://twitter.com/jaephlec/statuses/2193792976

      Jason Fleck’s last blog post..Silent Twitterers

    • http://www.dreamsystemsmedia.com/mat-siltala.aspx Mat Siltala

      @Jason Fleck
      Thanks for the tweet, and I am glad you learned something from the article.

    • http://www.dreamsystemsmedia.com/mat-siltala.aspx Mat Siltala

      @Nick Stamoulis
      I could not agree more, they will only get bigger as time goes on. I remember a few years back the suggestion of a desktop being replaced by the laptop, and then the laptop being replaced by the handheld… we are not to far off from people being able to do everything they need to run business via a phone.

    • http://www.digitalthirdcoast.net/blog George

      Do you have to use the Yelp app on the iphone or can you just go to the yelp site and post some reviews directly through their website?

      George’s last blog post..Badda “Bing”…Fuggeddaboutit!

    • http://www.dreamsystemsmedia.com/mat-siltala.aspx Mat Siltala

      @George
      You can just use the site without the app. Its just the app has some features on it that make it simple and easy.

    • http://www.bootcampstogo.com laurel

      I have my business listed on Yelp but don’t see it on my iphone. I see other businesses that aren’t even in business anymore.

      I am not having luck with the support on the yelp website. It’s messed up.

      How do I get my biz on the iphone?

      Thanks,

      laurel

    • http://www.dataflurry.com Dataflurry Joel

      Very cool, and an excellent app indeed. I am listed in Yelp, it is a great resource.

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    • Marie

      I love this line of thinking. That’s where we go, however we have a long way to go. We wanted to simplify the search for local businesses, and I think I’ve done. Now we must concentrate on the traffic and rolling the Yelp API in the mix.