Yelp Provides Embed Code for Showcasing Yelp Reviews on Your Site

Last summer, Yelp quietly started providing embed code that you can use to stick any customer’s Yelp review on your site.

As closely as I monitor Yelp, I didn’t know about that feature until now.  A few people wrote about it in passing, but I didn’t know about it until Mike of HikingMike told me in his comment on my 2015 post on copying and pasting Yelp reviews.  (By the way, I really appreciate getting intel like that.)

The embed code might be easier and cleaner-looking than a copy-and-paste or a screenshot.  Here’s what an embedded review would look like:

Read Chris B.‘s review of Local Visibility System on Yelp

How do you get the embed code?  Just go to your Yelp page (or your client’s), hover over the review, and click “Embed review.”

Why embed your Yelp reviews on your site?  Just because it’s usually showing off your reviews in general – both on Yelp and on any other review sites.  You can’t assume everyone saw them before getting to your site.  Your site should showcase what customers say about you, rather than just what you say about yourself.

Maybe hold off if only unhappy customers or unfair idiots have reviewed you.

Consider giving the embed feature a try while (1) it’s still around, (2) it’s straightforward, and (3) little-known.  As Mike wrote wisely in his comment:

“This info will be coming from Yelp so it would rely on their side continuing the embed service. If there were some issue, a location move, or something out of the ordinary, I could see the reviews not showing suddenly. They could change their embed method or code as well.

“But I’m also curious about what happens if the Yelp filter removes a review you have embedded. Will the embed still work or will it disappear? I know a lot of times reviews will show initially and then be filtered within a day or so (usually people that have just 1 review), so I wonder how it will work with those.”

Did you know about Yelp’s embed code before I did?

Have you used it?

Will you use it?

Leave a comment!

Why Is This [BLEEP]er Outranking Me in the Google Maps Results?

If you’ve made any effort to get your business more visible on Google’s local map, you’ve seen competitors whose visibility there surprises you.  Either they’re deadbeats and you have no idea why they rank well, or they’re hardworking and you’re not sure what part of their work has paid off.

In either case, you want to know why they’ve put the squeeze on you in the local search results.

I don’t know your situation, and probably couldn’t say with 100% certainty what’s going on even if I did know.  But I can tell you what I’ve observed over the years.

Here are what I’d say are the 7 most-likely explanations – some shoes to try on:

1. They’ve got better links to their site, or more good links. Not necessarily more than you’ve got, grand total.  Quality over quantity.  In either case, the best of their links are highly relevant to their industry or local area (or both), or were included in write-ups in the press.  How they got those links and how you can get similar (or better) links is a question for another read.  For now, I’ll just say that the overall quality of the link profile is in my experience the most common reason one business outranks another and stays ahead long-term.

2.  They’re using a landing page URL with a link profile that’s better than yours. Maybe you’re using a subpage or subdomain on your site as your landing page URL for Google My Business (because maybe you’ve got multiple locations).  That’s nice as far as the on-page optimization goes, but your location-specific landing page probably doesn’t have as much “link juice” as your homepage has – or as your competitor’s homepage has.

As I’ve written, I’ve found that you’re more likely to rank well in the Maps results if you use point your Google My Business and other local listings to the linkiest page on your site – which is probably your homepage.  I call it “economizing your links.”

(“But that’s a bad user-experience,” you say.  Nah.  Add a blurb about each location, and link to each “location” page.)

3.  They get consistently higher click-through from the search results. For instance, if their name is more relevant or they’ve got more or better Google reviews (or both), more people may click on your competitor than on you.  That seems to affect your rankings, if Google observes enough behavior to conclude that searchers clearly prefer one search result over another.

4.  Their business name – real or fake – is more relevant. Maybe it shouldn’t be that way.  Maybe it’s not really the name of your competitor’s business – and he or she is just spamming.

In any case, it’s a factor in your rankings, and it influences click-through (see point #3), which in turn also influences who outranks whom.

(Thanks to Darren Shaw for reminding me of this point.)

By the way, if it’s a fake name, do a “suggest an edit” and tell Google what the real name is and where they can see the business’s real name.  Recently I’ve had good luck recently in getting those anti-spam edits approved.

5.  They’ve got a longer track record of being a relevant search result. That’s often a byproduct of having an older Google My Business page, but not always.  If your competitor has been in business for longer, or has had an online presence for longer, or has more name-recognition, then Google has more data on who clicks, where they’re from, and what they typed in before clicking on your competitor.  To Google, your business is a giant bucket of data.  Google never empties the bucket, because it cares about what’s in the bucket.

6.  They’re being tested. Sometimes Google just flies a business up the flagpole to see who salutes it (see point #3).  Google often throws a “new” business into the search results with the businesses that more deserve to be there.  If the new kid seems popular with searchers, Google will keep it around unless and until searchers seem to lose interest.

7.  Google’s black box. If none of the above is a plausible explanation for why your competitor outranks you for now, then it’s probably for a mish-mash of reasons that only one pocket-protector-toting Google engineer might know.

That may sound like a cop-out on my part, and maybe it is, but Google’s local results are mighty deep seas.

Which specific search terms does one competitor vs. another outrank you for?  How close are you to that business vs. to your business?  What did you type in previously?  What device did you use?  What do your customers see?  Exactly what did they type in?  Where were they located?  How long have the rankings been like that?  And so on.

Just a quick word on what are, in my experience, the unlikely explanations for why that one [BLEEP]in’ competitor outranks you:

  • “They’ve got 170 more citations than I have.”
  • “Their site is mobile-responsive.”
  • “Their site is so optimized!”

Those things are easy.  Sure, they usually factor into your rankings, but they won’t separate the sheep from the goats.

Any questions or observations?  Leave a comment!

The Ridiculous Hidden Power of Local Reviews: Umpteen Ways to Use Them to Get More Business

Even the obvious benefits of great customer reviews are almost too many to count.  To wit: They take a little pressure off your site to “convert,” because visitors arrive largely pre-sold. They can help you eat up more of page one of Google. They help you cultivate non-Google Maps or non-Google sources of visibility. They […]

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Your Google My Business Page in 2017: How Hard Is It to Mess Up?

Google’s local-business pages of yore offered many ways to blow up your rankings – in the good sense or the bad sense.  Lots of customizable fields you could stuff full of keyword powder and watch go “boom.” In recent years, though, Google has childproofed businesses’ pages.  Usually, when you don’t fill out your page quite […]

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Dumbest Reasons to Hire a Local SEO Company or Person

I’ll never say you need to hire me or anyone else.  If your goal is to reach more customers/clients/patients in the local search results, you may or may not benefit from a third party.  I often tell clients and others that they should farm out as little of their local SEO as possible. Still, if […]

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If You Rename/Rebrand Your Business, Will You Lose Your Google and Yelp Reviews?

Let’s say you’re considering renaming or re-branding your business.  Part of that will involve renaming your online “local” listings – including Google My Business and Yelp.  Easy enough, but what will happen to your reviews?  Google’s form doesn’t inspire confidence, nor does Yelp’s handling of reviews in general make it feel like anything but Russian roulette. Will […]

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Relationship between Local and Organic SEO: a Simple Diagram

Too few people realize that local SEO is mostly organic SEO plus a few other moving parts.  I (and others) have found that without also doing what it takes to rank well in Google’s “10 blue links” results, you won’t grab as much visibility for your business on the local map. Local visibility isn’t a lovechild […]

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Breakdown of Page 1 of Google’s Local Organic Search Results: Who Dominates?

Though the first page of Google’s local results usually consists of 3 “local map” results plus 10 organic results, that doesn’t mean your business has 13 chances to rank somewhere on page one.  Nor do all pages on your site have an equal chance at ranking.  Nor does having the most-dominant site necessarily mean you’ll […]

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Should You Copy and Paste Your Online Reviews onto Your Site?

You worked your tail off to get those reviews – on Google or Yelp or Facebook or another site – and want visitors to your site to see them.  But you might have refrained from putting them on your site, because of one fear or another. I was gun-shy about it for several years, too, […]

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