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As consumers, we’re constantly searching for user reviews before we put our hard-earned money towards any restaurant, hotel, or online purchase. This is especially true when it comes to major remodeling, landscaping, or HVAC projects that can be expensive or time consuming. Of course, we all use Google and our favorite search engines to do our research. But should you optimize for Yelp, too? The answer is a resounding yes!
Not only do Yelp reviews dominate search results on Google, but the company has also formed partnerships with Apple Maps and Siri that influence search results on both platforms. The tool has also become especially popular for customer reviews and reputation management and has been proven to increase a user’s likelihood to make a purchase. In fact, statistics show that four out of five Yelp users visit the site before making any sort of purchasing decision at all.
What exactly does SEO optimization for Yelp involve? I have some tips that can help you make the most of your Yelp profile to maximize your online real estate and get more leads from the Web. Keep reading or contact Blue Corona for help with your local SEO campaign!
How to Optimize for Yelp
The first thing you should do to optimize your Yelp is pretty obvious—claim your business listing if you haven’t yet done so. Businesses that already have listings but haven’t been claimed can be unlocked by entering personal information and agreeing to Yelp’s terms of service.
Once you’ve claimed your listing you can begin SEO optimization for Yelp by:
Making Sure Your Profile Is Completely Filled Out
Consumers usually use Yelp as a way to do a bit of research before purchasing a product or service. They’re looking for customer reviews, but they’re also looking for your hours of operation, your address, and a general overview of your business. To provide your customers with a big picture of your company services make sure to include as much information as possible, including:
- Full address that matches your location on Google Maps and your website address
- Phone number
- Business category
- Map location
- Price ranges
- And more
Don’t forget to fill out the “About Us” section too with a short biography and keyword rich content that can boost your Yelp page to the top of Google search results. This is a good opportunity to list specific specialties and discuss your qualifications or business history, as D C Keeton Home Improvements has done in the example below:
Responding to Negative Reviews
Many businesses simply ignore negative reviews or try to bury them with paid reviews and other shortcuts. Judging by Yelp’s recent decision to penalize businesses with paid reviews, this isn’t the best idea—and neither is ignoring negative feedback.
Instead, you should use each negative review as an opportunity to improve the customer experience and rectify poorly handled situations. Apologize to your clients for the negative experience, provide more information, and offer a solution that will correct the issue. By doing so, you can show potential clients how great your customer service is and maybe get a few leads from those who would have gone elsewhere otherwise.
Encouraging Customers to Write Reviews
One of the best ways to get more positive reviews is to ask your existing customers to write them. If you have clients that seem happy or have used your services regularly, these are good candidates to reach out to. But remember to avoid offering incentives in exchange for positive reviews—you will be penalized!
Promoting Deals on Yelp
If you have any special offers or deals going on, use Yelp to promote them. This can encourage users to visit your Yelp page—and they may even end up writing a review while they’re there! It can also help those who are comparing several businesses make a decision, along with any positive reviews you have on your page.
Tracking Your Yelp Optimization Efforts
Once you start using these tips for Yelp SEO, it’s important to measure and track your results to see if your efforts are actually paying off. Use Yelp for Business Owners to see how much traffic you’re getting on your Yelp page and monitor incoming traffic coming from Yelp to your website through Google Analytics. You can then use this information to tweak your Yelp SEO campaign as needed.
When you’re ready to start SEO optimization for Yelp, Blue Corona can help. We have experience helping contractors get more qualified traffic and convert more visitors into leads with our local SEO efforts. Give us a call
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About The Author: Blue Corona is a data-driven online marketing company with offices in Gaithersburg, MD and Charlotte, N.C.
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