There is no doubt that Yelp reviews have the power to drive guests to (or away from) restaurants. Since reviews wield such potential, they can easily become your strongest ally or your fiercest foe.
Create an Account
Step one, create an account. This is about as simple of a first step as there can be. Did you know that even if you don’t create a Yelp account for your restaurant, guests still have the ability to review your business? Take a proactive approach and create an account that most accurately reflects your business. The emphasis should be on creating as thorough of an account as possible that includes all of the basics, such as hours, location, and menu. Be sure to upload well-lit, quality photography to offer readers an understanding of the essence of your restaurant. Your Yelp account is also an appropriate platform to share any key information such as where to park, whether you offer Wi-Fi, or whether you have an outdoor seating area.
Responding to Feedback
Maintaining a high level of responsiveness is essential to managing relationships with former guests and prospective guests. Regardless of how perfect your restaurant is, inevitably you will receive negative feedback from time to time. Be polite and responsive in all of your dealings with both negative and positive reviewers. A public apology is always encouraged, as is addressing any specific concerns where possible. To take things to the next level and attempt to make amends, reaching out to the reviewer privately is a savvy move.
Making Reviewing Easy
Once you’ve activated your Yelp page, you’ll want to make it as easy as possible for guests to review your restaurant. You can try a number of strategies such as hosting a Yelp event, offering an exclusive Yelp deal, display positive Yelp reviews and add a Yelp QR code on signage inside your restaurant.
There are tons of best practices you can employ to drive positive Yelp reviews. The only strategy that is guaranteed not to work is doing absolutely nothing.