How to Manage Your Restaurant’s Yelp Page

Man looking at laptop in cafe

Reviews play an important role when it comes to deciding where to dine. Clients read them to determine which restaurants are a must because of their famous drinks or their delicious signature dishes, and which ones are a no-go based on their dirty kitchen or horrible customer service.

The most popular provider of online customer reviews and recommendations is Yelp. Many of your clients will use it before and after doing business with you. Did you know that 90% of Yelp users say positive reviews affect their purchases and where they dine? Managing the reputation of your restaurant is no easy task. This article explains everything you need to know about managing Yelp and taking control of your reputation.

Getting Started

The first step towards being in charge of your Yelp page is claiming your business. You can do this online for free along with uploading photos, creating a Yelp Deal and answering to reviews. Yelp also offers you a chance to buy targeted online ads, remove ads from the competitor and other benefits that you can get if you decide to pay for them. Although the company claims you’ll get better results if you pay for ads, you can still put your best foot forward for free. Add the best pictures you can take of your restaurant’s savory dishes, colorful drinks and any other unique attribute that your business has. Remember to take advantage of the Yelp Deal and give your soon-to-be clients an exciting first impression!

Put Your House in Order

You can’t expect to get good reviews if your servers are rude or if the food takes too long. To make sure that your restaurant is good to go, you need to check three things: appearance, creativity, and service.

  • Appearance: First impressions last a lifetime. Everything needs to be perfectly clean – always! Many customer reviews begin and end with decor and atmosphere.
  • Quality: You need delicious food and maybe a few signature drinks. Yelpers are always looking to discover a famous dessert or original appetizer.
  • Service: Waiters with an attitude, an uncooperative hostess or a lost order can ruin a dining experience for anyone, resulting in a horrible review. Some technologies, such as Aloha Point of Sale systems, help servers keep track of orders and make the paying process easier.

Managing Your Reviews

Once your restaurant starts getting reviews, you’ll see that some are great while others are not as good. While Yelp doesn’t let you edit or delete any reviews, that doesn’t mean that you can’t take control.

Replying to your reviews is the best way to create a sense of interest and care for your customers. The key is to answer to both good and bad reviews. Thank your customers for positive reviews and offer constructive solutions to reviewers who had a less-than-perfect experience.

Yelp also allows you to send a personal email to a specific reviewer. Take advantage of this opportunity to send special offers to reviewers you would like to give you a second chance. Users can change their reviews at any time, so don’t give up too soon and take their suggestions seriously.

Some businesses claim that Yelp chooses the reviews they display based on whether the client pays for ads or not. That doesn’t mean that it’s hopeless if you don’t have a budget to spend on Yelp. Keep your reviews well managed and you’ll do just fine.

Powerful Tool

Yelp can be dangerous, but when managed properly it can really help to launch your business. While some business owners fear bad reviews, many love Yelp because it keeps them stay in touch with their customers and it puts their name out there for hungry searchers.

You can be a Yelp lover too, as long as you keep track of your reviews and pay close attention to what’s being said. The worst mistake you can make is ignoring your Yelp site or not having one at all. So line up your staff and get your fingers ready to type because this could be the beginning of a fruitful Yelp journey!