The guide to getting your first review on Yelp

Preparing for your first review

A quick and easy walkthrough to getting your first review on Yelp 

Think about the last time you bought something on Amazon, booked a trip or looked up a recipe online. You probably looked at reviews in that process. Reviews are a part of our everyday life, and consumers trust reviews. As a business owner, how to get reviews is a common question. This guide will provide tips and tricks for how to get ready for your first review. 

Getting reviews, and especially that first review, can feel like the most important thing when you’re putting your business online. It’s important to remember that earning those reviews takes time. Similar to how it takes time to build up business through word of mouth, the same is true when it comes to generating online reviews. After all, your reviews are just your word of mouth online. 

It’s about review quality, not quantity

We all eat three times a day, while hopefully only needing our car repaired or bathroom remodeled every few years. There is no perfect number of reviews for a business. That number will change based on industry, the number of customers they serve, and how long they’ve been around. You should adjust your expectations for the number of reviews you’ll get based on the size of your business, your industry, and your tenure.

Imagine a hair salon that has two stylists versus a salon with 15 stylists. The salon with two stylists may have seven clients each in a day. 14 clients total. The larger salon could easily see over 100 clients in one day across the 15 stylists. When a business is servicing more customers, they will have more opportunity to get reviews.

5 Easy steps to getting your first review

There are many things you can do to set yourself up for success on Yelp and get your business page ready for your first review.

Manage your listing on Yelp

When you opened your business you had a vision for how you wanted consumers to see you. Show them who you are and why they should choose you. Join the community and start telling your story your way: Upload photos, respond to reviews, update your business information and more. The first step is to Claim Your Business Page. Claiming your business page is free to do by visiting

Add photos to your business page on Yelp 

Add photos to your business page

Images entice and help tell your business’ story. Think of your Yelp page as your digital storefront. Including photos is like displaying your most attractive items in the front window to pull in customers as they walk past. It shows them what they will experience when they engage with your business and paints a picture of who you are as a business. 

You don’t need to have a professional photo shoot in order to add photos to your Yelp page. Taking pictures on your smartphone is a quick and easy way to show your business online. You can add a variety of images to help tell your business story. Some of the best images to include are:

  • Photos of yourself 
  • Photos of your staff
  • Photos of your product 
  • Photos of the interior and exterior of your business (if you have a brick and mortar)
  • Photos of your company vehicles if you are a service based business
  • Photos of your specialties and services offered. 

You can add an unlimited number of photos through your Business User Account on both desktop and mobile. 

Complete your About The Business section on Yelp 

What makes your business unique? It’s the people and the story behind the business. Your About The Business Section provides an opportunity for you to tell the story of your business. What goods or services do you provide, and what sets you apart from the competition. 

Use the section to express who you are as a business, and highlight for potential customers what you’re all about. This is a great way to set expectations before they come into your business and helps to highlight which parts of the business make you unique. 

Set up your Service Offerings & Area on Yelp 

Your Service Offerings

Are you looking to get calls from people who know exactly what your business offers? Your Service Offerings let Yelp users know what specific services within your industry you offer. Are you an HVAC company that only does installations, and no maintenance or repairs? Are you a hair salon that also does manicures and pedicures? By adding your Service Offerings, you get more targeted and relevant queries. 

If you’re a service-based business that travels to your clients you’ll want to also add a Service Area to your business page. This shows Yelp users how far you’re willing to travel for a job. 

To add Service Offerings and Area to your business page you’ll go to the Business Information tab of, and look for the Categories and Services section.  

Be proud of your Yelp page 

Talking about yourself may not be your favorite thing, but talking about your business should be! Once you have started telling your business story on Yelp, you’ll want to let people know they can check you out. Include a link to your Yelp Business Page on your website, in your email signatures or on any electronic receipts you may have. You can do this before you get your first Yelp review.

Doing this is like subtly leave a trail of breadcrumbs to let people know you are on Yelp.

Don’t ask for reviews

Have you ever had a great experience in a rideshare? You’re having a nice conversation with your driver, and then when you get to your destination they quickly ask on your way out the door, “Can you give me 5 stars?”

It feels awkward, because it is. Asking for reviews put your customers on the spot, and it doesn’t get you the natural feedback that will come if you don’t ask. Reviews that are asked for also tend to be bias. 

Rather than asking for reviews, the best thing you can do is provide exceptional customer service, and stand by your products. Customer service is actually the secret to 5-star reviews!  

Do respond to your reviews on Yelp 

Respond to reviews

Once you get your first Yelp review, you’ll want to be sure to respond. Responding to reviews is a great way to reflect your customer service practices. It also gives you a public way to show potential customers how much you care. 

Review responses can be a great marketing tool, but it also requires a bit of strategy. Follow this guide of DOs and DONTs to ensure your next review response is a success. 

Summing it up: Getting your first review on Yelp

Getting your first review is an exciting moment. But, you don’t need to sit by and wait for that to be the thing people see when they look at your Business on Yelp. There are many tools that you can take advantage of in your Business User Account to set your page up for its first review. Tell your business story online in the place that consumers are looking for you. Start taking action today to help your business page be ready for that first review. 

Set Yourself Up For Your First Review


The information above is provided for educational and informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice and may not be suitable for your circumstances. Unless stated otherwise, references to third-party links, services, or products do not constitute endorsement by Yelp.