Google should displace Yelp! with the Zagat Deal

Many Brands have a love hate relationship with Yelp! One of my clients has received awards from Yelp! but we have also struggled to get customer service when someone leaves a fraudulent review or one that isn’t proper (like an angry customer calling the owner a bitch).

You can flag reviews and sometimes they get taken down. Other times not. There is no customer service number on the Yelp! site that I could find. You don’t get an email communication regarding any decisions on flagged reviews. They just stay. Or they disappear.

In the past Yelp! showed up in the first age of results. More and more I see second or third page. Now I am starting to see the integration of Google Places with Zagat on the first page.

And it looks really nice and compelling.

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Now my client is a mobile business so the address here is moot. But the Zagat integration also giving their website I like a lot. We have noticed a big decrease in activity on Yelp! including much fewer reviews.

This is definitely a development to watch. My friend in 2009 was working for City Search. And they sold businesses a package that also ensured they were in the first page of results. Yelp! obviously displaced City Search especially with their easy to use Mobile App.

Now many Google will be displacing Yelp!? Just think of how Google Places, Navigation, Google Plus, and Zagat could be a major integrated player in your business being found and it’s public image.

For a small business I always recommend listing in many places and monitoring them. They can help you discover quality issues faster, improve your service, and give you many insights. I also recommend that anyone unhappy gets contacted. I have converted some dissatisfied customers into major brand advocates this way.

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About chiefalien

Howie Goldfarb with 20 years of Sales and Marketing experience founded Blue Star Strategic Marketing in central Vermont to serve as the objective and strategic adviser of brands to help them grow and thrive. His Degree in Finance and 14 years of B2B sales to Fortune 500 companies gives him a CFO’s view of marketing. Thus bringing a dose of reality to the confusing world of jargon, spin, and hype. Also playfully known as the Chief Alien of Blue Star Strategic, Howie relishes his role as an industry outsider. A native New Yorker and former Angelino, he currently lives in the Green Mountains of Vermont and is still seeking his first moose sighting. His passions are living life, art, music, the outdoors, he tries to cook and loves the Vermont Fresh Network – local sustainability initiatives like farm to table and buying local.
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