Yelp: The Missed Opportunity For Local Business

 When it comes to local search, businesses need to be very aware of all of their local listings online.

The most important and popular local listing would be Google+ (now called Google My Business), but what about the next most important listing?

Enter Bing and Yelp.

Bing may not be big enough to have a well-adapted tool like Google+, but even they know that local search is important. So to provide better local search results, they partnered with Yelp to showcase local listings.

But do Bing searches really matter?

Well, about 30 percent of all online searches are conducted through Bing. Even Yahoo uses Bing as their search engine.

Additionally, there are significant portions of older generations and businesses that use Bing due to it being the default search engine within Internet Explorer. Even popular mobile devices from Apple all have Bing as the default search engine (such as the iPhone's Siri).

With 30 percent market share and being the default search engine on many platforms, your Yelp business listing is more important than you may realize.

And Bing is just the start.

Studies have shown that many people use Yelp for researching places to eat and stay. 

Quantcast has recently shown Yelp being used by over 5 million people a day and around 90 million people a month. With a desktop and mobile website plus an app, Yelp has made itself very accessible to users, wherever they may be.

And yet with all of this evidence, it is shocking how many businesses never claim their local Yelp listing. For example, in the picture below you will see a search for "bakery" in Sioux Falls, SD on Yelp.

A search for the word

As you can see, there are many shops that have not claimed their listing.

The problem is that some of these listings do not have the correct information. This can become very frustrating for potential customers as incorrect phone numbers or addresses can often appear.

If you as a business do not claim and optimize your listing, Yelp is left to decide what information is correct about your business.

Our advice: do not be a business that loses customers to incorrect local search listings when the solution is very accessible.

Here's how.

Claim Your Yelp Listing

To claim your listing, go to the Yelp Claim Your Listing page and locate your business.

Note: You may have more than one listing, so you may need to work on removing redundant entries.

After you have claimed your listing, make sure that your profile is optimized with the correct address, contact information, website, and hours of operation, along with a good description and photos.

From there, you will just need to check your listing every 3-6 months to ensure it is still correct and make any relevant changes.

It is a simple process, yet the majority of local business owners never seem to take the time to claim their listing.

Use this to your advantage as a way to separate yourself from your competition.