How to Increase Your Yelp Rating Using Yelp’s 7 Content Guidelines

Posted in: Marketing | Reputation Management

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This online reputation management video explains Yelp’s 7 Content Guidelines and how you can use them to improve your Yelp rating.

Transcript of Yelp Content Guidelines and Flagging

Hello! My name’s Daniel Russell and here at Go Fish Digital we’ve made a series of videos about how your business can improve its Yelp star ratings and reviews. Today, I’ll be talking specifically about how your business can improve its Yelp star rating and reviews by using Yelp’s content guidelines and flagging procedure.

Every person that signs up for Yelp has to agree to abide by certain content guidelines when they go through the signup process. Now, while I never read these guidelines when I first signed up and you probably didn’t either, since signing up I’ve become very familiar with them because they can become incredibly helpful when it comes to removing negative reviews about your business. The key is that if any reviews violate any of Yelp’s content guidelines, you can flag these reviews and have them removed. If any of these reviews happen to be negative, removing these reviews can help boost your company’s score on Yelp. The way you can get these reviews removed is by flagging them when you’re signed into Yelp. When you’re signed into Yelp, go to a review.  It can be a negative review or positive review. When you scroll to the bottom of that review’s box, in the bottom right hand corner, you’ll see a small gray flag. When you click on this, it will begin the flagging process for that specific review. Now in order for Yelp to approve a removal of a review, it has to violate one of their guidelines. Today, I’ll be talking about seven of Yelp’s guidelines that could come in handy.

1. Inappropriate Content

The first content guideline I’ll be talking about is Inappropriate Content. They define inappropriate content as including swearing, lewd speech, threats, and even harassment. If a review contains swear words or threats against any of your employees, you can have it removed by flagging it.

2. Conflicts of Interest

The second guideline that Yelp gives for its content is Conflicts of Interest. If a review has obviously been left by one of your competitors or if a review has been left by someone inside your own network, you can flag it and have it removed. Granted, reviews that have been left by people in your own network are typically not negative, but if it’s a former employee or something like that, you can still flag it and have it removed.

3. Promotional Content

Next up is Promotional Content. Now most promotional content typically comes from within a business, but occasionally people will come onto your Yelp page and leave reviews promoting their own business or promoting something else that’s not even Yelp-related.  If any of these reviews happen to be negative, you can have them removed as well.

4. Relevance

Guideline number four is Relevance. The key to this guideline is that a review must be about the “core consumer experience” that your business offers. If a person has left a review about your business, but all they’re doing is ranting or complaining about your company’s ideology, or even if they just take issue with some of your business practices, you can have that review removed. Now what exactly does “core consumer experience” mean? I don’t know and Yelp quite honestly doesn’t know either. So this is when you have an opportunity to craft a really strong argument about why that review does not relate to the core consumer experience that your company offers. Because Relevance is such a broad guideline, it gives you a lot of opportunities to look at the different reviews that have been left on your company’s page and identify if any of them could potentially maybe not be so relevant.

5. Privacy

Guideline number five is Privacy. If a review has been left on your page and mentions one of your employees by their full name, you can have it flagged for a privacy violation and removed. Yelp also typically doesn’t allow close-up video or pictures of your employees and so if people have attached those to their reviews as well, that also violates the guideline.

6. Intellectual Property

Next up is Intellectual Property. If any review seems like it has been copied verbatim from another website, maybe they wrote a TripAdvisor review word-for-word onto your Yelp page,  this technically constitutes a violation of Yelp’s Intellectual Property guideline and you can flag it for that as well.

7. Demanding Payment

Finally, guideline number 7. A reviewer cannot demand payment or a refund in their review. If somebody has left you a review asking you to refund the price of the product and is asking for some form of payment, whether it be in cash or coupons or vouchers, Yelp is not a big fan of that and they will remove it for you.

Those are Yelp’s seven core guidelines and if you become familiar with them, you’ll be surprised about how often they can come in handy for your business. By staying on top of the new reviews that show up on your Yelp page and flagging the negative ones as they come in if they happen to violate any of these guidelines, you can boost your business’s Yelp score and then also improve the review content on your page. I hope this has been helpful! Thanks for watching. And of course, if you ever have any questions please feel free to contact us. Thank you!

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