How Does Yelp Help Small Businesses

How Does Yelp Help Small Businesses – The mere mention of that name sends shivers down the spine of even the most avid local business owner. Every time I talk to a small business owner and turn to Yelp, I feel frustrated. “Review filtering is blocking all my good reviews!” They scream. “They won’t stop pushing me to use Yelp ads,” they say. After all, “I hate Yelp” is an oft-repeated refrain. Some may hear these stories and write them off as sour grapes, but what if these concerns about Yelp are justified?

Complaints about Yelp’s shady dealings have been made over the years, but without evidence, those claims are usually dismissed as unfounded. Much of the concern about Yelp’s business practices is related to their “suggested review” filtering feature. In a perfect world, this filter would be based on complaints (former employees, disgruntled customers, etc.) In fact, some business owners claim that this review filtering process is used to force businesses to advertise with Yelp or To punish those who do not. The FTC filed 2,000 complaints regarding Yelp’s business practices from 2008 to 2014. More than 100 complaints were received, most of them related to these complaints.

How Does Yelp Help Small Businesses

Many of these claims will hit the big screen later this year in the documentary Billion Dollar Billy. The documentary covers legal action brought against Yelp by business owners based on filtering practices and reputational threats to businesses that choose not to use Yelp’s advertising services. You can watch the trailer for yourself below:

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Yelp, for its part, has denied any and all allegations of unfair review filtering practices. In their defense, they cite legal victories against business owners who have filed lawsuits. Yelp’s critics often challenge these legal victories, as they did in 2011

Win on a technicality – the court ruled that Yelp did not have the “right” to post positive reviews of any business and that posting negative reviews did not meet the legal definition of “economic exploitation.” While this is a technical victory for Yelp, this legal decision may allow Yelp to legally continue to operate as they did. That is, filtering out positive comments at will. Although these decisions give them legal standing, Yelp believes that their review filtering algorithm has nothing to do with business owners’ position as Yelp advertisers. In any case, the privacy of this algorithm and the unfairness of the filtering system make many small business owners cry.

Since there is no way to opt out of being listed on Yelp, some business owners have taken the extreme tactic of spreading negative Yelp reviews from their customers so that none of the reviews will be taken seriously. One such business is Boto Bistro in Richmond, California. Owner Davide Serretini originally started offering customers 25% off in exchange for a one-star rating on Yelp. The trend may have generated a lot of buzz for Bay Area restaurants, but actively reducing your online reputation isn’t a move most business owners are comfortable with.

Even if you have the potential for viral fame, here at Marketing Department 10, we don’t recommend going to Boto Bistro. Instead, we think it’s better to take the strengths of review sites like Yelp (trustworthy reputation, strong organic search rankings, etc.) and use those features to help your business. We offer reputation management services to help you with this process, but there are also simple steps you can take yourself. For example, satisfied customers may be asked to review you if you know they love your business. When you get positive reviews, share them on social media to promote yourself. It’s also important to become an active participant by complaining about your pages on Yelp and other review sites, then carefully responding to negative comments and thanking customers for their positive reviews. Will this strategy lead to 5-star ratings from visitors to your Yelp page? no way. Sometimes unhappy customers are an inevitable part of doing business in any industry, but by proactively managing your online reputation, you can neutralize the impact of negative reviews and increase the flow of positive reviews. ! The coronavirus pandemic, but thousands of businesses are still closed – many of them permanently.

Yelp’s New ‘racist’ Alert Raises Concerns Among Small Businesses

As of July 10, 132,580 businesses were listed on Yelp YELP, -0.92% The review site has closed due to the coronavirus pandemic, according to the latest Economic Average report. The good news is that’s down slightly from last month’s 140,000 closures, as a phased reopening in some places has allowed many businesses to reopen, albeit at limited capacity.

But while temporary closures have decreased, the number of permanently closed businesses is increasing. Of all businesses that have closed since March 1, 55% (or 72,842 businesses) will never reopen, up from 41% reported in last month’s Yelp Local Economy Impact Report.

“Overall, permanent closures have been steadily increasing since the peak of the pandemic, with a slight increase in March, followed by May and June,” it said.

Restaurants and retailers have been particularly hard hit. A total of 26,160 Yelp-listed restaurants closed as of July 10, and 60% (15,770) closed permanently — up 23% from June 15. And that was the last call for more than four bars out of 10. Nightlife spots (44%) listed on Yelp never reopen.

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There are 26,119 commercial and retail businesses still closed, half of which (or 12,454) are permanent, up from 29 percent of what Yelp reported last month.

Beauty (4,897 permanent closures) and fitness (1,930 permanent closures) centers are also among the hardest hit sectors. It is difficult for these establishments to follow the social distancing measures necessary to reopen in many places.

“When you look at those two top categories [retail and restaurants], we’ll never see some of those businesses again,” Justin Norman, Yelp’s vice president of data science, recently told the Wall Street Journal.

In May, the CEO of restaurant reservation service OpenTable warned that one in four restaurants would not be able to reopen after the coronavirus pandemic. In fact, total reservations and visitors at Open Table were down 14 percent on May 95 from this date last year, and they were down 100 percent year-over-year in April. The National Restaurant Association estimates that the overall decline in restaurant and food service sales between March and May could be $120 billion.

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According to the National Bureau of Economic Research, black-owned businesses have been hit harder by the pandemic than any other demographic group. The number of black small business owners fell to 640,000 in April, or 1.1 percent, from 1.1 million in February.

But there’s a silver lining: Yelp reports that support for black-owned businesses on its site has skyrocketed since becoming active for racial equality. In the months since George Floyd was killed in Minneapolis police custody, more than 2.5 million Yelp searches have been made for black-owned businesses, compared to 35,000 in the same window last year — a 7,043% increase. Searches for black-owned restaurants increased by 2,508 percent. Interest in black-owned bookstores is growing 1,437% year-over-year, likely driven by people who want to better educate themselves on black racism, police brutality and other social justice issues.

Some of the other bright spots in Yelp’s report include professional services such as lawyers and accountants, which scored lower (840 and 294, respectively). Online services such as health services, educational businesses and web design are also taking off at a slower pace.

It remains to be seen how the economic recovery will unfold and which businesses will be able to reopen and remain open as cases of the coronavirus continue to rise in southern and western states.

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Related: The coronavirus recovery tracker has 6 data points that should tell you when the economy will recover

Los Angeles recorded the highest number of closures with 11,342 businesses closing on Yelp, but Las Vegas had the highest number of closures by number of businesses in the city at 861. Those numbers are down slightly from last month as more locations reopen, but they could shift as coronavirus cases across the country continue to climb to April levels. For example, California has once again moved to close indoor operations at restaurants, bars, gyms and museums. And New York, New Jersey and Connecticut have flattened their coronavirus curves, and nearly two-thirds of the U.S. now requires visitors to self-quarantine.

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