Yelp is a leading online review website designed to give consumers an opportunity to critique businesses they interact with. It has become a popular sight for gathering information on all types of businesses from restaurants to bridal salons. However, Yelp has long been criticized for a variety of questionable tactics. Yelp has been accused of hiding negative reviews and trading positive reviews in exchange for advertising dollars. Most importantly, Yelp has been under attack for not giving a voice to the businesses that are being reviewed. This is all changing.
If you are interested in commenting on Yelp reviews about your business, you must log on to biz.yelp.com to claim your page. Yelp has created a guidelines section in its Business Owners Guide to help guide you through the process of managing a negative review. The guidelines include:
- Explain how you have addressed a specific concern raised in a review
- Correct inaccurate or out of date information provided by a reviewer
- Attempt to resolve disputes via private messaging prior to posting the business’ version of the story
- Avoid personal attacks
- Do not offer incentives
- Do not thank a user for a positive review
While allowing business to comment on reviews will not solve all problems, it is a good first step in resolving the issues that have plagued Yelp for the past several months.