Your Yelp page will make or break your business. It’s usually the first place a potential customer will go, even before your own website, so it’s important that it’s all buttoned up. The restaurant scene is already competitive, so don’t let your Yelp page—something you can (mostly!) control—be the reason customers eat down the street. Here are some tips to keep in mind:
Have a complete and accurate page—Make sure you have all of your restaurant’s information listed, including hours, the phone number and address. It’s über-convenient for customers that are already on your Yelp page looking at reviews. When they decide they want to try your restaurant, they’ll love that the phone number and address is listed right there so they can skip the extra step of Googling it.
Upload your own photos—Especially for restaurants, your Yelp page should accurately portray your joint’s atmosphere, look, and of course, its food. These days, your iPhone can take some pretty amazing pictures (not your iPhone 4s, though, sorry!). If you aren’t confident in your photography skills, you can hire a photographer for an hour to take some snaps of your best dishes. As a bonus, you can re-purpose the professional photos on your social media.
Ask for customer reviews—It’s that simple! A 2013 study found that people who had a negative experience with a company are 50% more likely to talk about it on social media than people who had a good experience. If you make it known that you welcome Yelp reviews, more of those satisfied customers will take the time to write one. You can request reviews through your social media accounts, have your servers mention it at the table, or if you don’t mind having a decal on your front window, you can request a “Find Us On Yelp!” window cling from the Yelp website.
Respond to all reviews—Whether the review is good or bad, it always makes a restaurant appear more human when you respond. It’s important to never sound defensive or angry when responding to a bad review. Take it as a chance to win their business back! Make it personal and not generic so they know you read their comments and took the time to respond to them. When you come across an awesome review, feature some quotes on your website or social media and cite the reviewer’s name. It’s OK to show off a little!
Good luck, and may the reviews be ever in your favor!
Jenna Oltersdorf, Principal, Snackbox
Based in Austin, Texas and specializing in consumer public relations, Jenna Oltersdorf has reimagined PR through the creation of her firm, Snackbox. Having worked with major national and international brands throughout her career, she has been responsible for a variety of groundbreaking campaigns. Jenna has also been recognized for excellence in her career through nominations for Austin Under 40 and the Austin Business Journal’s Best CEO awards. For more information about Jenna’s work and Snackbox, visit www.snackbox.us.