Yelp has long been a thorn in the business owner's foot; rumors that Yelp favors showing negative reviews and the difficulty involved with removing fraudulent/abusive reviews have been hurting Yelp's reputation. To counteract this, some business owners have resorted to soliciting positive reviews, even for money!
News came out this week that Yelp is aware of these solicitations and has made an update to warn Yelp users about an account that might not have honest reviews. The message, which is a pop-up on the affected Yelp profile, reads "We caught someone red-handed trying to pay someone to write, change, or remove a review for this business. We weren't fooled, but wanted you to know because these actions not only hurt customers, but also honest businesses who play by the rules. Check out the evidence here."
Have you noticed a change in your Facebook business profile? The newest addition to business pages has to do with the response rate to messages received by the business. Facebook has a new icon that they will add to your cover photo that will signify to Facebook users that a business promptly responds to their inquiries.
To earn this response rate icon, which looks like a bright green message button, the business must:
- respond to 90% of all messages and
- the median response time must be 5 minutes after the inquiry is received.
If you're interested in seeing how your business page might already stack up for response rate, look for your current response time on the left hand navigation of your business page:
Citysearch, though they've long been in the local review game, has just taken a step up by offering an incentive program for users that leave reviews. The program, Citysearch Local Rewards, will be based on a point system that will culminate in prizes like Amazon gift cards.
From Citysearch, "Citysearch users want to know what businesses you like and why. They want to know what businesses to avoid. And we want to reward you when you take the time to provide your opinion, photos and more. We also want to provide you opportunities to earn rewards for supporting local businesses. The points you earn can be converted to an Amazon Gift Card at any time, once you’ve earned at least 1000 points."