Yelp. I don't know if I've met anyone who TRULY loves Yelp and has a 100% great relationship with them. However, I know MANY pet businesses that have received endless leads and new clients and customers from the platform.
It can be considered by some as a necessary evil.
Others miss out on the opportunity for growth by assuming it's not worth it. It seems like you HAVE to pay for Yelp ads, you feel like your locked in, and Yelp blocks all your wonderful reviews because you don't pay enough. Been there??
Well, today, you're hearing from Sarah Archer, a content marketing expert from Siege Media who has experience generating content for small businesses that resonates with readers and drives growth.
She also knows that Yelp can be a POWERFUL tool for pet businesses. There are ways to set up your profile, optimize it to drive results, and ultimately be in charge of how much you're spending to advertise each month.
I'm excited to have her share her expertise on the subject, so let's get into it!
Setting up Yelp for Your Pet Business
Imagine having a direct line to your customers right at your fingertips. Imagine having instant access to invaluable customer feedback and a simplified method for reaching thousands of prospective customers who have yet to hear about your pawsitively awesome pet business.
Sounds pretty amazing, right?
Well, I’m here to tell you that what you’re envisioning isn’t just a figment of your imagination. It’s all possible through a handy platform known as Yelp.
With a robust website and smartphone app, Yelp helps connect businesses with customers on a more intimate level.
Yelp customers have access to a platform to share their unfiltered experiences with businesses. And business owners on the platform have free and paid tools for managing their business, gathering customer insights, and promoting their business to new customers.
With all of these benefits, you might be feeling like you want to get your pet business profile set up on Yelp today. And we’re here to help!
With the following tips, you’ll be able to get started with your profile and leverage Yelp for business successfully.
Getting Started: How to Create (or Claim) Your Page
If your pet business has an existing Yelp business page, you can search Yelp and find it in the search results, listed under “business name.”
Not seeing your page? If you aren’t able to claim your page, it could have already been claimed (wrongly) or the page was so recently submitted that it’s still pending approval from Yelp.
If you’re new to Yelp, navigate to “Add Now” to get your business set up in the system.
From there, you’ll be prompted to add in details about your pet business.
You’ll want to make sure you fill out:
Business category (pets!)
Completing Your Pet Business Profile
You heard it from Yelp–businesses with complete profiles receive five times more customer leads per month on average. That’s a lot of leads!
If you’re unsure about your profile and how complete it is, check out the helpful progress bar towards the top of your profile to see how far away you are from a completed profile.
Complete your pet business profile with the following information:
Hours of operation
Unique value proposition
Taking the time to supply the above information to Yelp users makes it easier for customers to truly understand and connect with your business and also helps you stand amongst your competitors.
For example, if you’re a pet salon owner, you may want to add before-and-after pictures of the animals you groom, highlighting the special way your services let pets shine. Showcasing what makes your business unique can get you a leg–or paw–up on the competition!
Adjust Your Account Settings
The rule of thumb with your account settings is to always ensure your information is accurate and up-to-date.
Keep your account relevant and accurate with the following tips:
Upload a current headshot of yourself if you are the owner or manager of your business
Opt-in for all email notifications so you never miss customer feedback or updates
Add in all locations of your business to your profile
Yelp Activity Overview
Once you establish your Yelp business profile, you’ll gain access to an “Overview” or “Activity” view.
From this view, you can monitor your reach, page views, and customer leads.
User views are commonly referred to as your business’s “reach.” The number of impressions you see here represents how many users have seen your listing on Yelp’s website, mobile site, or mobile app.
Customer leads will depend on your specific pet business, but can look like any of the following:
In addition to analytics on reach and leads, Yelp’s “Overview” also shows you a time-stamped feed of customers that are interacting with your listing. In the Audience Activity Feed, you’ll see:
Users that made a call to your business
Users that wrote a review
Overview of listing impressions
Audience demographic data
Audience device-specific data
Communicating with Customers
On Yelp, communicating with customers is critical and can be done through three important mechanisms: reviews, ratings, and your Yelp inbox.
Ratings and reviews represent your customers’ feedback, both positive and negative. These reviews and ratings impact the overall rating of your business and the number of reviews you have is important for increasing your profile’s visibility on the platform.
With reviews, acknowledge and celebrate the good reviews. You’ve done a purr-fect job in these customers' eyes! But, it’s also important to respond to the negative reviews as well. Addressing negative reviews can increase customer trust and bolster your business’s reputation on the platform.
You can also use the inbox feature here to communicate with current, prospective, or past customers in a private fashion. With these direct messages, you’ll want to be prompt with your responses because your response rate is publicly displayed on your profile. Businesses with faster response times may beat out competitors that have a less-than-stellar response time.
Advertising on Yelp
If you wish to actively advertise your business, Yelp has the option for you to independently manage your ads.
The largest benefits of paying for advertisements is that you can target your local market, have a premium placement on Yelp search and competitor businesses pages and show up on both mobile and desktop.
Best part? No minimum or maximum ad spend.
It’s recommended that you establish your page first and get a variety of organic reviews since customers will likely still look into your business if they see it as an advertisement.
You No Longer Need to Send for Yelp
With the information above, you can set up your pet business profile on Yelp in a matter of no time. And with your profile, new customers can discover your business and current or past customers can give you feedback that will help move your business forward.
Check out the infographic below to recap what we’ve discussed in the post!