How To Remove Bad Yelp Reviews: The Complete Guide
Unfortunately, having a business page on a review site is a double-edged sword. You need one in order to generate reviews & be found by customers. However, you leave yourself vulnerable to the Yelper wrath as we like to call it.
There’s always going to be an unsatisfied customer that can’t wait to leave a negative Yelp review for your business. Read our article “Why Your Yelp Reviews Are “Not Recommended”” & you’ll see that Yelp is a business owner’s worst nightmare.
For one, most of your good Yelp reviews won’t even be shown on your Yelp page. Only the reviews from seasoned Yelpers will pass through Yelp’s algorithm. And, as you could imagine, seasoned Yelpers are the most critical reviewers.
Nevertheless, there are a few ways you can remove bad Yelp reviews. However, they must be against corporate content guidelines. And even then, there’s no guarantee that Yelp will actually remove the review as they rely on an algorithm to filter through the majority of requests.
The rest of this article explains how to remove bad Yelp reviews.
How To Flag A Yelp Review As Inappropriate
The following steps explain how to remove bad Yelp reviews:
- Sign into your business account on Yelp.
- Go to the Reviews section of your dashboard.
- Find the review that you’d like to flag.
- Click the three-dot icon next to the review in question.
- Click Report Review.
- Choose a reason for reporting the review. (See below for more information)
- Offer additional information if requested.
Yelp provides the following reasons for flagging a review:
- It contains false information
- It was posted by someone affiliated with the business
- It was posted by a competitor or ex-employee
- It contains threats, lewdness or hate speech
- It doesn’t describe a personal consumer experience
- It violates Yelp’s privacy standards
- It contains promotional material
- It’s for the wrong business
Keep in mind that if you choose “It contains false information”, you’ll receive the following response:
“Sorry, but we don’t take sides in factual disputes. If a review appears to reflect a user’s personal experiences and opinions, it is our policy to let the user stand behind their review.
There’s always more than one side to a story, as a business owner you can address misunderstandings by posting a public comment or sending a direct message to the reviewer.”
Therefore, you won’t be able to request removal of reviews under the grounds that the review contains false information. The primary reason for this is that it creates a “he said, she said” situation between Yelp, its users & business clients.
Yelp Protects Its Users
Yelp, like other review sites, tend to protect users in situations like these. However, this becomes extremely detrimental to businesses when the majority of your positive reviews do not even pass Yelp’s review filter.
Nonetheless, the review must be against Yelp’s content guidelines in order for the review to be eligible for removal.
Is Your Review Against Yelp’s Content Guidelines?
Yelp offers the following content guidelines that users & business clients must follow. If the reviewer conflicts one of these guidelines, then the review would be eligible for removal.
- Inappropriate content: Colorful language and imagery is fine, but there’s no need for threats, harassment, lewdness, hate speech, and other displays of bigotry.
- Conflicts of interest: Your contributions should be unbiased and objective. For example, you shouldn’t write reviews of your own business or employer, your friends’ or relatives’ business, your peers or competitors in your industry, or businesses in your networking group. Business owners should not ask customers to write reviews.
- Promotional content: Unless you’re using your Business Owners Account to add content to your business’s profile page, we generally frown upon promotional content. Let’s keep the site useful for consumers and not overrun with commercial noise from every user.
- Relevance: Please make sure your contributions are relevant and appropriate to the forum. For example, reviews aren’t the place for rants about a business’s employment practices, political ideologies, extraordinary circumstances, or other matters that don’t address the core of the consumer experience.
- Privacy: Don’t publicize other people’s private information. Please don’t post close-up photos or videos of other patrons without their permission, and please don’t post other people’s full names unless you’re referring to service providers who are commonly identified by or commonly share their own full names.
- Intellectual property: Don’t swipe content from other sites or users. You’re a smart cookie, so write your own reviews and take your own photos and videos, please!
- Demanding payment: Beyond simply asking for a refund to remedy a bad experience, you should not use removing or posting your review as a way to extract payment from a business, regardless of whether you’ve been a customer.
Don’t Let Yelp Keep You Down! You Have Power…
If you have the goal of building your online reputation, then you know that the name of the game is getting more good reviews. It’s common knowledge that most of the primary ranking factors for local business directories are review-related. Therefore, the online review is extremely powerful for a small business.
Not only will generating more reviews help you boost your “street cred” on the web, but it’ll also show search engines that you’re a preferred option among your competitors.
Main Point: no one can deny how important it is to drive positive reviews on your business accounts!
We offer a suite of reputation management products to help you generate positive reviews, monitor & respond to them, & mediate negative ones before they’re left on your business page.