Yelp is a very popular resource for searches for all types of businesses. It can really boost a small business when searches lead to your page. As small business owners we want lots and lots of positive reviews. Sometimes our thoughts turn to ways to game the seemingly simple system.

We think about asking clients and friends to give us positive reviews so we can up our star score. But, Yelp knows about this tactic and regularly filters reviews that look illegitimate. Their filter’s not perfect, but it does catch many fake reviews.

As difficult as it is I must agree with Yelp that you don’t want to try to rig it to make your business look good. This goes completely against the spirit of Yelp. And, according to Yelp, it’s precisely because there are much fewer fake reviews on Yelp that its popularity and usefulness are maintained while other review sites wither. Makes sense. We wouldn’t use Yelp much longer if we saw way too many 5-star reviews for all the businesses listed.

So, switching the angle from manipulative to altruistic, what can YOU do then to help out a friend who owns a business? Simple, give them a Recommendation. Yelp provides this feature exclusively so owners can help out other owners. If you’ll look at my Yelp page you can see that I recommend 3 businesses that I know and trust (look all the way at the bottom left to find them). Yes, I know I need to add more!

In case you’re not sure how to use this feature on Yelp – you do need to be the owner of a business listing – then watch this short video I’ve made to help you.

Now that you know how to use this above board Yelp feature for business owners why not use it? You can start with The Growth Coach if you like. 🙂

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