Mike and I took a deep dive into our respective predictions for 2018 last week. Hope you enjoy the conversation as much as we did!
Over time, Yelp will remove the negative reviews manually, of course, as they’re a violation of Yelp’s policies–though I’m not sure whether it’s fair to say they violate the profanity policy any longer.
The more important story here is that so many negative reviews from new or first-time reviewers went live in the first place, which indicts the heavily-marketed “accuracy” of Yelp’s review filter for small businesses everywhere. It’s clearly biased to accept negative reviews from newbie reviewers and to filter positive ones.
This narrative further reinforces (and is reinforced by) the unreliability of Yelp’s review filter.
Regardless of whether Yelp actually engages in this mafioso behavior, it’s easy for Yelp’s customers to believe that it does, which will continue to be a problem for the company as it fights Google and Facebook for SMB ad dollars.
Phil Rozek is out with a phenomenal real-world case study of how a small mediation firm expanded its audience of legit clients.
While I remain highly skeptical of the value of tracking individual keywords, aggregate local rank tracking over time is still a good barometer for the relative health of your local search efforts.
To that end, Whitespark’s newest additions to their Local Rank Tracker are worth a look, thanks in part to their easy-to-understand visualizations.