The Ultimate Guide to Using Yelp for Small Businesses (Updated Aug. 2017)

The Do’s and Don’ts of Acquiring Yelp Reviews

Do: Give a heads up. Phrases like “Find us on Yelp,” “Check us out on Yelp,” or “See what our customers have to say” with links to your Yelp page are encouraged.

Don’t: Specifically ask for a review. Yelp can, has, and will continue to penalize businesses specifically asking for reviews.

Do: Make it easy. Having easy-to-follow links to Yelp will generate more review opportunities.

Don’t: Write fake reviews. Businesses that use this risky tactic are nearly always penalized in the long run.

Do: Send an email thanking a customer for their business with a link to your Yelp page. Don’t ask for a review, but perhaps say something like, “Thank you for your business. See what our other happy customers have to say.” This follows Yelp guidelines, and promotes healthy review generation.

Don’t: Pay people to write reviews, or offer incentives for reviews. This is against Yelp Guidelines, and possibly illegal. Again, Yelp can and will penalize this behavior.

Do: Have a Yelp Sticker on your storefront to encourage reviews. Geek Powered Studios has created a Yelp sticker ordering form for signage at your business.

Don’t: Pick and choose which customers you should send review opportunities to. If you’re sending a follow up thanking a customer for your business, don’t exclude grumpy customers.

Do: Share your reviews on other social media. Once someone submits a review for your business, Yelp makes it easy to share that review on Facebook and Twitter. Share some of your favorite reviews and others may want to review you as well.

Don’t: Try to discourage people from seeing bad reviews. Bad reviews happen. It’s how your business deals with bad reviews that can make a world of difference.