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Yelp Wrap-up

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On May 7th, we posted a blog What’s the deal with Yelp, the purpose of the blog was to get feedback from the restaurant community on some of the rumors we had heard about Yelp.

We post our blogs through multiple social media outlets, and a lot of them allow comments on the post. Today’s blog post is a wrap-up of the commenter’s sentiments about Yelp. You are welcome to look at the actual blog comments here.

Restauranteur’s Opinions on Yelp:

  • Overly aggressive sales team
  • The perception that Yelp can make your bad reviews filter toward the bottom of review feed if you advertise.
  • The perception that good, 5 Star reviews, often disappear because Yelp’s algorithm’s thinks they are fake.
  • Major distrust of Yelp
  • Only hear from Yelp when they get bad reviews.
  • Drives traffic and customers to restaurant

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We had several Yelp user’s comment as well, and their basic feedback was that they liked the service. One commenter stated that they used Yelp when they traveled & it had never steered them wrong. That has also been my personal experience with the site.

What we would like to see Yelp do:

  1. Consider requiring or giving additional weight to reviews where the user posts a photo of their check. This photo would provide proof that a customer ate at the restaurant.
  2. Additional proof could also be accomplished by using a 3-D barcode to launch a verified review.
  3. Use the available review metadata that you collect to identify false reviewers and ban them from your site.

Yelp suffers from a perceived impropriety issue. If Yelp doesn’t filter bad reviews to the bottom when people advertise there is a perception that they do. Yelp should address these rumors and provide some transparency on how they filter and their ability to affect the placement of reviews in a restaurant’s review feed.

As a Yelp user I don’t want them to filter any reviews, the value of Yelp to me is that I get an honest picture of what people are saying about a restaurant.  If Yelp is filtering advertiser’s bad reviews to the bottom of their feed, then I might make a bad decision.

Thanks to all of you that voiced your opinions on this blog.

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Written by

I've been in the restaurant industry for most of my adult life. I have a BSBA from University of Denver Hotel Restaurant school and an MBA from the same. When I wasn't working in restaurants I was either doing stand-up comedy, for 10 years, or large enterprise software consulting. I'm currently the Managing Director of OpsAnalitica and our Inspector platform was originally conceived when I worked for one of the largest sandwich franchisors in the country. You can reach out to me through LinkedIn.

2 Comments Published

by Robert Caldwell , post on 24 May 2015 | Reply

I totally agree with what you would like to see yelp do.

Also think there should be some discouraging of totally venomous reviews. Those (IMHO) are more often fake than not, and do not represent the overall operations of the restaurant, or the performance of it’s employees.

by OpsAnalitica , post on 26 May 2015 | Reply

Seems like there are a lot of things that could be done to improve the experience all around, but if they keep making money doing what they are doing it will be tough to get them to change.

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