Dear Real Estate Professonal, whether you love it or hate it, you need to be on Yelp. Thank Apple. Whenever an iPhone 4s (or higher) user searches for a local business using Siri, the results are powered by Yelp. That’s right. If you’re not on Yelp, iPhone users are not going to find you in local searches. But wait, it gets worse. The results that Yelp returns to Siri are based on Yelp reviews. So the top result returned is going to be the Realtor with the most positive reviews. But wait, it gets even worse. It’s bad enough that there are millions of iPhone 4S users doing local searches, but rumors have it that Siri will be integrated into the next iPad. So now you understand, that if you want to be found in mobile search, Yelp is essential. And it’s not all due to Apple. Yelp simply dominates all other review sites with over 60 million registered users and over 20 million Yelp reviews posted.
Here are some Tips for Getting Started with Yelp
- Go to Yelp and do a search for your business name. If you find it, click “Work here? Unlock this Business Page.” If you don’t find it, simply click “Add a Business”.
- Complete your business profile. You want your business to stand out, so fill out as many fields as you can, including about, important info, contact information, website, etc. Upload a profile pic, then add some stunning professional photographs of listings. Consumers love photography, so wow them with yours and make your competitors photos pale in comparison!
- Ask some of your favorite clients (who already use Yelp) to give you a review. Yelp is tricky. If someone creates an account for the sole purpose of giving you a review, chances are that Yelp will not publish the review. Stinks. So, your best bet is to find people who use Yelp already, and ask them for that positive review.
- Respond to your reviews! It’s amazing that most businesses on Yelp do not do this. But Yelp is becoming more and more social, and should be treated as a Social Network. That means for every review you receive, you should immediately go in and comment back with an insightful response.
- Study your Yelp Insights. Believe it or not, your business has a really cool Yelp dashboard that includes some great insights into its performance. Insights include number of views, number of clicks, and much more!
If you want more information and help on Yelp, they have a wonderful section on their site called Yelp for Business Owners. And watch next week for a post on Google Local Pages. Android users have Google Voice search, which is very similar to Siri. And guess what it indexes? That’s right, Google Local Pages!
See You There
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