Yelp, Google, Facebook: Which Review Site Is Best For A Local Business?
Among the most popular online directories in the United States, there is Yelp, Google & Facebook. And before we get into which one is the best review site for your business, I’d like to stress a few important points.
- 46% of all Google searches are looking for local intent (Hubspot)
- 97% of people learn more about a local company online than anywhere else (SEO Tribunal)
- 78% of local mobile searches result in offline purchases (Search Engine Land)
With those statistics in mind, it’s no surprise that online listings management is extremely important when it comes to local marketing. And guess what consumers (and directories) use as a key indicator of a business’ viability? Their reviews of course.
But simply knowing that online reviews are “important” doesn’t mean anything unless you know which review site will put you in the best position to have a positive influence on consumers.
The rest of this article will compare the pros and cons of the world’s leading review sites: Yelp, Google & Facebook so that you have a better understanding of which direction you should focus your efforts.
Yelp: The Infamous Local Business Review Site
Yelp has a bad wrap with local business owners. And no matter what the newest Nielsen study on local business directories may say, the fact that a lot of your legitimate Yelp reviews could end up being “not recommended” has a lot of businesses focusing their online reputation efforts on Google & Facebook.
Granted, it’s best practice to claim, verify & build out your Yelp listing for visibility purposes. However, you may want to consider routing people to your Google or Facebook listings for reasons we’re about to cover.
Google My Business: Prime Exposure For Your Reputation
Perhaps the biggest strength of Google My Business over other local business directories is the prime exposure it provides on Google.
Your business description, product offering & photos are all definitely important, but it’s review signals that make up a big part of Google’s local pack ranking algorithm.
Therefore, if you’re hoping to increase your exposure on the world’s leading search engine, then getting more positive Google reviews should be your main focus.
Want to learn more about getting more positive Google reviews? Read our article here.
Facebook: Social Recommendations Rather Than Star Ratings
Facebook reviews have gone the wayside of unorthodox. Now, instead of leaving a star rating, users are now asked whether they would recommend the business or not, which lends itself nicely to the platform’s social nature.
Keep in mind that users can still leave a review of your business for their friends to see, but your business rating will be based on the amount of people that recommend your business rather than the traditional average star rating.
The primary benefit in leveraging Facebook’s social recommendations/reviews is that they can be leveraged on your business page or on the social media platform in posts.
So What’s Our Recommendation?
You have no control over which directory your ideal customer will visit. Therefore, having optimized listings in all three directories is extremely important when it comes to improving your reach. However, if you want to double down on online visibility, we recommend routing your customers directly to your Google listing when you request reviews.
Insider tip: Use an automated review generation service for maximum effectiveness because you can’t expect your customers to remember unless you notify them.