There are many free features to choose from when creating and updating your Yelp Page. The typical listing has basic business information, photos, and reviews—and most business owners stop there. But a little extra work will make your page stand out. Here are five hidden gems that you can add for free.
It is paramount to let potential consumers know everything you offer and what you do. The Categories and Services Offered sections are predetermined selections that allow you to define the specific business functions you offer, but the Specialities section allows you to round out your business’s story and get specific using your own words and tone. This free-form text box lets you describe to your customers what you do exceptionally well with up to 1,500 characters. This can provide a deeper dive into your offerings and services, show why your business is the safest option, or simply just make someone smile.
Think about the times that someone has called you and asked if you offer a specific service. These are the types of things to include in your Specialties section.
The key phrases and terms you enter in this section will also help you get more organic visibility on Yelp. Each Yelp search starts with a need—having this section filled out as much as possible can take a potential customer from discovery mode into spending-money-at-your-business mode.
A check-in offer rewards customers with a special offer when they physically “check in” to your business on Yelp. Displayed on both desktop and mobile, check-in offers serve as an opportunity to stand out from competitors. You are in charge of the terms so you’re never offering more than you’re comfortable with. Create an offer with a discounted price, percentage off, a free item, or BOGO (buy one, get one free). Check-in offers are not only for brick-and-mortar businesses—they can be used by any industry.
Check-in offers help convert people who are perusing your listing into customers. These offers are free to create, interchangeable, trackable, flexible, and help amplify your business’s voice. When a user activates your offer, Yelp automatically notifies their network and Yelp “friends” about where they are/what service they are using, so it’s great for helping spread the word, too. Additionally, Yelp prompts the user to promote their activation on other social media sites, which further drives brand awareness for your business.
Have you ever looked at an online picture of a delicious-looking sandwich and have no idea what’s in it or what menu item it is? Looking at photos without captions is like watching a foreign film without subtitles. Without captions, important information can get lost in translation. When uploading a photo in your Yelp for Business account, you’ll notice a caption box where you can describe the photo.
Photo captions also allow you to add in words that will help you get more visibility via Yelp search results—similar to your Specialties section mentioned above. Not only do folks know what they’re looking at, but it will contribute to your overall Yelp SEO. Deciding on the right photos can be tough, but keep in mind there’s no maximum to how many you can upload so feel free to show off all you have to offer.
The hours listed on your Yelp Page can be updated for special occasions and holidays. Adjusted hours—whether it’s for a one-off closure or a special holiday—should always be indicated on your page so customers can easily take note of when you’re open or closed for business. George Vlahos of Urban Griddle notes the importance of keeping your hours and operations up to date on all platforms. “No matter what my message is—whether we’re closed, whether we’re working, whether we’re doing delivery or not—the message has to be clear, and it has to be out there.”
Having both regular and special/holiday hours listed on your Yelp Page creates transparency with your customers, which leads to a better overall experience. Special hours are set up on a day-by-day basis and can be changed at any time. Additionally, consumers will see a special note at the top of your Yelp Business Page as well as in the hours section.
Your amenities—also called attributes—provide further details about your business operations and availability. Certain amenities are searchable by Yelp users and help them narrow down their list when looking for a business that has certain features—like “Accepts Credit Cards” or “Vegetarian Options.”
Selecting the amenities that make sense for your business can help potential customers make a quick decision. For example, we’ve all been there when we are walking the dog and forget our wallets. Looking up businesses with the “Accepts Apple Pay” attribute is going to be the driver in the decision-making process. Similarly, if that same dog owner is looking to dine in at a pet-friendly restaurant, the “Dogs Allowed” attribute comes in handy.
Yelp users love supporting Black-owned and women-owned businesses, so if you fall within those categories, you can signify that on your Yelp Page. If your business is open to all customers, regardless of race, age, gender, and beyond, select the “Open to All” attribute, a campaign that represents the awareness and understanding of the importance of nondiscrimination laws.
After completing your Yelp Page with basic information as well as these hidden gems, you’re ready to level up and explore some of the paid upgrades Yelp has to offer, like Call to Action, Business Highlights, and Yelp Connect.