Negative Yelp Review in Progress

Angry Patients = Negative Yelp Reviews…right in your waiting room.

Yesterday, I received an email from Yelp announcing its new feature: the ability to leave reviews for a business from your smartphone.

Until today, the Yelp mobile app allowed for mobile check-ins and the drafting of reviews. However, in order to officially submit the review, you had to be on a computer logged into Yelp.

This seems rather tedious, but it had its benefits, including:

  1. Allowing customers to simmer down before clicking submit (we say a lot of things in the heat of the moment we later regret), and
  2. Ensuring that reviews were left at an IP address separate from the business, proving that the review wasn’t left by an employee.

Most people with smartphones will connect to whatever WiFi access they run into, and this includes WiFi that some businesses provide for free to their customers. With the new review feature, our team expects to see many more filtered reviews simply because the reviewer posted from their phone accessing the business’s WiFi and IP address.  Posting from the business’s IP address has long been known to trigger filtered reviews, as it appears to be a fake review left by the business and its employees, rather than a genuine customer review.

To break it down, three things could happen if Yelp doesn’t take appropriate precautions:

  1. Yelp may become further inundated with fake reviews,
  2. More honest reviews could be filtered, and
  3. More negative reviews can be left for businesses before the business has the opportunity to make it right.

We’ll specifically tackle number 3 below:

Quick Tip to Leveraging the New Yelp Mobile Review Feature:

Don’t allow your reception area to turn into a waiting room, or you’re likely to get a negative review before you ever see the patient.  This is an important change, because at least before this feature, you had a chance to make it right before the patient ever had a chance to leave a review.  With this new feature, every second counts.  If your patients are allowed to sit in a reception area long enough to write a review complaining about how long they had to wait, they’ve waited too long.

Of course, this makes it harder to run a successful practice, but if your business prides itself on timely appointments and customer service, this will give you a leg up on your competition, who may begin seeing more negative reviews due to long wait times.

For ideas on how to best leverage Yelp for your business, contact your Customer Satisfaction Manager right away and ask about our Yelp Help training for your staff.

Not a client?  Want to learn more about how to make Yelp work for your business?  Contact us for your free social media analysis and report, and we’ll send you a free copy of our e-book, No BS ROI: Social & Interactive Marketing for Medical Aesthetic Practices.


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