Digital Insights

Is There an SEO Payoff With Paid Yelp Ads?


Published: March 27, 2014

Yelp is arguably the most popular social review site, with more than 53 million local business reviews posted since 2004. While Yelp is probably best known for its reviews, it has evolved over the years into an important local search site by providing more detailed information about local businesses than is commonly available on other suggestion engines.

Whether you realize it or not, your business probably already has a Yelp listing. Customers can post reviews and information about your business without any action on your part. At the very least, you should claim your business listing to ensure that your business information is accurate and up to date.

The posting of Yelp reviews on the major search engines is another important reason why Yelp should be part of your digital marketing plan. Google search returns are already including Yelp reviews, and by partnering with Yahoo it is likewise in the process of integrating Yelp reviews into its search results.

Start by Claiming Your Yelp Listing

Claiming and setting up your basic Yelp business profile is a pretty straightforward process; the most important task is to provide absolutely consistent information across every directory listing you claim. The slightest discrepancy between even minor details can throw the search engines off track and rob you of potential traffic to your website.

To avoid this confusion, create a master business profile with your basic business information in a separate file. When you create a new profile or listing, simply cut and paste your saved information into the new profile.

Be sure to fill out all information fields completely, and include high-quality photos to spotlight your company. If appropriate, include a photo of the front of your business so first-time customers will know what to look for.

Why You Should Consider Paying for Yelp Ads

Paid ads on Yelp reach highly targeted local prospects who are interested in learning more about your business. Your business will also benefit from Yelp’s aggressive and unique approach to SEO.

  • Yelp features a large number of backlinks in all of their pages. Relevant backlinks are one of the single most important factors in successful SEO.
  • Much of Yelp’s content is generated by its users. Each new review posted adds to the overall SEO.

How to Get Started With Yelp Advertising

Yelp offers several different advertising packages to choose from, ranging from $300 to $1,100 per month.

  • The $300 package includes 500 targeted ads.
  • For $540 you will receive 1,200 targeted ads.
  • The $850 level includes 2,100 targeted ads.
  • For $1,100 you will receive 3,000 targeted ads.

In addition to the targeted monthly ads, each Yelp ad package includes the following bonus features:

  • The removal of competing business pages from your page.
  • Your business page added to your non-advertising competitor’s pages.
  • A one-minute video commercial about your business.
  • Unlimited photographs about your business and products.
  • A “call to action” button added to your page. This could be used to feature a coupon or special offer.
  • Assistance from the Yelp support staff.