When it comes to any business, reviews mold our perception about the outcome of the product or service we are researching. No matter if you own a clothing brand or a service business, positive reviews are the driving force behind your growth. Every day, companies are fighting amongst each other on various platforms such as Yelp, Facebook, Google, and more to gather as many positive reviews as possible. All of this is to claim the top spot in their respective categories. As you read on, you will learn how and why Yelp is vital to your cleaning business success.
What is Yelp?
Yelp was created in 2004 by two former PayPal employees, Jeremy Stoppelman and Russel Simmons. With its headquarters in San Fransisco, California, Yelp came to fruition to fill a void in the review gathering space. Up until that time, reviews or testimonials were posted directly onto the companies website by the owners. This frequently created false recognition for businesses that were making false claims about their products or services.
The “King of Reviews” site, as some have come to call it, focuses on gathering authentic reviews from real-life customers who have used a service first hand. These reviews are posted publicly on the companies Yelp profile.
How does Yelp work?
Yelp has two avenues to its functionality. The first is that of the consumer. You, me, and everyone else who would like to leave reviews for a business need to create your profile. The setup is fast and straightforward and can be completed within a few minutes. The second is that of the company. Now, as a business, you will need to create and claim your company’s page. This process is very simple as all you need to do is go to the right page, click “Add Now,” and fill in your business details like the name, email, and phone number. After entering those details, you will be sent a verification code through email or phone. Once you have made and submitted the claim to Yelp, you will need to wait for the approval. The approval process can take up to a few business days, so don’t worry if you have not heard back on the same day. Once your page has been approved, you are ready to go!
After your page has been created and approved, you will want to go in and fill out all the remaining sections thoroughly and completely. The more up-to-date details your page has about your business, the more likely you are at converting someone browsing into a paying customer. High-quality images, well-written sentences, and an overall friendly vibe will do tremendously for your conversions.
Is Yelp reliable for your cleaning business?
Now that you understand the basics about Yelp and how it works, it is essential for you to know whether or not it is reliable for your cleaning service. Depending on the area you live in, Yelp may or may not be used more than a different platform. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t create your page just because it isn’t prevalent where you conduct your business. For example, in one part of the world, Google can be the go-to for customers leaving a review, while Yelp is an afterthought and vice versa. Here’s the thing, having more than one place to gather reviews and feedback is always going to be the best decision. Why? Well, you don’t know which of your customers hold an account on any given platform, so giving them a choice to leave feedback where they already have an account open is the best option.
Yelp has an advantage over most review-gathering sites as the developers created an algorithm to determine if the reviews posted under a specific page are fake or not. The algorithm is not always correct at spotting a real or phony review, as there are times when genuine reviews get filtered. Still, as a business owner, you can take steps to have fake or overtly negative reviews filtered or have positive reviews taken out of the filter and shown publicly.
Why is Yelp great for your cleaning business?
Interaction with customers
Suppose a customer went through a subpar service, in that case, you have the opportunity to have a conversation with them to figure out where things went wrong and how they can be adequately solved going forward. You may not think having a customer post something negative about your business would be a good thing. At first, it isn’t, but how you handle this negativity is what matters. At the end of the day, we are all prone to making mistakes from time to time, making us all human. When considering an approach to responding to a distraught client, always stick to the basics.
- Apologize and acknowledge the mistake and inconvenience
- Remedy the situation by offering a free reclean or discount towards another service
- Note down what happened and look into why it occurred and how to make sure it doesn’t happen again
These may seem simple enough, but you would be surprised as to how many business owners play the blame game and try to throw others under the bus. Even if it wasn’t your fault, these three things could quickly change a situation from bad to great. Who knows, the customer could even update their review after just your response.
Providing detailed information
The more details, the better. When it comes to your company, you want the customers to have as much information about you before picking up the phone or sending an email. You may have already experienced this first-hand when searching for a product or service, but when a profile page is only 10 percent completed, you feel that this company is either fake or out of business. So why would you subject yourself to losing customers by not taking the time to give the people what they want? As each day passes by, human interaction is becoming less prevalent on the internet, which means details make a world of difference.
Attracts new customers
For years now, we have gone to the internet to find products or services that will help enhance our livelihood. Even without knowing, we may stumble upon a company that we end up using without overtly looking for it in the first place. Whether it was from an ad placement or just stumbling across it while mindlessly scrolling your phone in the middle of the night, having this extra profile will bring new customers. Yelp helps in this because they want users to spend more time on their platform, which they do so by providing a great service and even bring users back to their site or app in the form of email marketing. If you have a customer Yelp profile, you may have received an email or two from them about local businesses in your area. This is an excellent way for you to earn some new customers that you wouldn’t have been able to get if you never created your page.
Is a Yelp business account free?
Yes, creating and keeping your Yelp profile is 100 percent free. All the basics of a Yelp profile are free, and if you wish to utilize Yelp to its fullest, you can upgrade to the paid options. Some of the options you get with paying are removing competitors from your page, a CTA (Call-to-action) button, or placing ads.
Is Yelp advertisement worth paying?
If you’re aware of Google or Facebook ads, Yelp ads work similarly to these two. At the fundamental level, you speak to a Yelp representative and give them your monthly budget. Based on this budget will determine how often and where on a particular page your profile will appear. The more of a budget you have, the more placements you will receive. If you are starting, you may notice that once you have created your profile, these representatives will be reaching out to you to discuss opportunities to get more reach to your page.
As a word of caution, do not spend any money with Yelp without first having a minimum of 10-20 reviews. Time and time again, we have heard of business owners creating Yelp profiles and dumping money into Yelp ads with zero reviews and complaining that they are not getting any conversions. Without any reviews, the customer will most likely skip your AD and go with someone that has reviews. They do not want to be the so-called “Gunniea pig” and try you out before anyone else does.
How to create a good Yelp profile for your cleaning business?
You can create a fantastic Yelp profile for your business just as fast as you can create a horrendous one. Some users over-complicate their approach, with others over-simplifying. Once you know the basics of getting set up, you will be done in no time!
Create/claim your business Yelp profile
First and foremost, create your profile page. You will want to go to Yelps page and find where to start a business profile. Once you follow the steps there, you will wait to be approved by Yelp.
Add your basic business information
Once you have been approved and your claim has been accepted, you will want to add your company’s basic information. Start by adding your website, hours of operation, business address, and the services you offer.
Create an attractive section about your business
This section is where you will want to spend some time articulating all your company’s best attributes. Your potential customers will see that they are in good hands if you write down more than just “Started in 2020 with the goal of cleaning homes.”
Upload high-quality images
This is another key area that will either help your credibility or hurt it. Posting images that are unclear or out of focus will make your clients wonder if you can’t take a decent picture, then how can they trust you with their homes?
Response rate and time
This has less to do with the actual setup of your profile and more to do with the upkeep. There are two aspects to responding. One is the response time, which is how long it takes you to reply to a review or quote. The second is response rate, which is the rate of the responses you give. You will want to make sure that your response rate is 100% or as close to it and that your response time is 60 minutes or less. The higher the response rate and the lower the response time makes you look more professional and trustworthy.
What are the Strategies to gain positive reviews for your cleaning business?
Respond to quotes as quickly as possible
You will find at times that potential customers who land on your Yelp page will message you directly on there for a quote instead of emailing or calling. Responding as quickly to these as possible is an excellent opportunity of gaining new clients and increasing your response time and response rate. Responding quickly will lessen the chances of this potential client going elsewhere to another business.
Respond to negative reviews
Whenever you receive negative reviews or unsatisfactory comments for your cleaning business, always remember to respond to them professionally. There may be times where, unfortunately, you will deal with unruly customers, and the issues they are stating may not be accurate or your fault. If this is ever to happen, make sure that you do not degrade or belittle the customers in your response. Clearly state in a professional context where the miscommunication is and try to offer a solution that works out for both parties. If you do and the customer still doesn’t take the offer, you can always contact Yelp to remove the review.
Ask your friends and family
If you’re short on reviews and want to boost your ranking, you can always ask your close friends and family to test your service and post feedback. Gaining reviews is a critical process, and we created a separate blog post with more information. Click here to learn how to get more Yelp reviews.
How to avoid negative Yelp reviews?
Respond to all reviews
Again, you must respond to all reviews no matter how good or bad they are. If there is one thing you take away from this post, it is this. Good, bad, happy, or sad, everyone that takes the time to leave you a review deserves a response. This shows anyone browsing your page that you care about the quality of your customer service, which translates well into your business services. The more reviews you respond to over time, you will start to realize who your ideal customers are. Your business will benefit significantly from it.
Fix the mistakes
Like we said before, we are all human who tend to make mistakes from time to time so, there is no need to worry or panic. Whenever your customers face an issue, always listen to them first and then immediately fix the mistakes.
Communicate with your customers
Your customers should know before purchasing your services what you do and don’t provide. If things are unclear from the beginning, make sure they know what they are paying for. If they expect to have something done and don’t end up getting it, you can expect an upset client.
Get the review removed
If you want an incorrect/negative review removed, you can report the review to Yelp. Choose a reason as to why you believe this review should be removed and submit it. It might take Yelp a few days to respond, so you will have to wait for their response. Make sure that you add details and evidence to help the chances that the review is removed.
Request your customers to remove the negative review
Another way would be to reach out to the customer. If you have already responded to the review and they have not coordinated back with you, now is the time to send them a personal email or phone call. It may take a few days for the upset customer to cool off after a bad experience, but once they have, they may be in a better mindset to change their opinion. It would help if you always remembered to tread lightly with unhappy customers. Speaking calmly and apologetically can move mountains if done correctly.
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When to start advertising with Yelp, if ever?
Once you have created a business profile on Yelp, the next step is to keep moving ahead with your target of growing the cleaning business and attracting more customers. We mentioned earlier that when you are just getting started, you should not utilize their ad platform. If you have established a foothold in a specific area and have a dozen or more reviews, you can now think of using Yelp ads. If you don’t have a marketing budget for ads, we highly suggest staying away from this until you have more revenue and profits. However, if you do have recurring revenue coming in and all other aspects of your business are covered, start with a small amount and increase as time goes on.
Yelp has a feature called “Elite,” which gives certain users who apply and are approved a badge on their profile labeled “Elite.” Elite Yelpers are customers who are always actively engaging and leaving authentic and meaningful reviews to various businesses. Why should this matter to you? Receiving a review from an elite holds greater weight than from someone who is not part of the elite group. Keep that in mind because you never know when a Yelp user will have ‘Elite’ status, which means providing excellent service at all times is a must.
Yelp is a well-established platform operating with massive success and continues to expand its features and functionality. Many local businesses have flourished and gained recognition and success through this platform by using it for advertisements and marketing their company. Many people look up to this platform due to its broad reach to all local businesses. Creating an account on Yelp won’t backfire for you; instead, it will help you gain brand recognition and identity in less time.