Apparently, the new partnership between Yelp and Yahoo is not something small business owners are happy about.
Some are angered by the fact that their online reviews on Yahoo! Local (Yahoo’s own reviews aggregator) have disappeared, replaced by reviews from Yelp.
In a story on The Wall Street Journal, Dan Tringale, owner of Colonial Hardwood Flooring in Lexington, Mass., says that nearly 50 Yahoo reviews of his business – most of which were positive, and accumulated over the last six years – have disappeared since Yahoo began syncing review content from Yelp a month or so ago.
“It’s a slap in the face that they took all those reviews down overnight,” said Tringale, who revealed that approximately 30 percent of his business comes from online searches. “It’s not easy to get 50 great reviews: it’s as if Yahoo just took away six or seven years of hard work.”
We definitely feel for you, Dan. Colonial Hardwood Flooring’s page on Yahoo is now furnished with only a single Yelp review: “Respected budget got difficult stain taken care of very attentive and house got an offer opening weekend.”
It’s a five-star review, sure. But in an age when consumers rely on the Internet for information and track business reviews to guide their purchase decisions, 50 five-star reviews will always be better than one five-star review.
It must be said, though, that the terms of the Yahoo-Yelp partnership specifically state that when Yelp reviews become available for a Yahoo-listed business, these would replace the reviews owned by and posted on Yahoo.
A company spokesman for Yahoo said, “We partnered with Yelp, one of the most trusted, relevant sources of consumer business reviews, to provide a richer search experience for Yahoo users. That’s why when Yelp’s reviews are available for U.S. businesses, they will replace Yahoo Local reviews.”
Local searches make up approximately 25 percent of Yahoo’s search traffic, which means that the demand for reliable local information – such as reviews, ratings, and other kinds of user-generated content – is high. Are you a business owner hoping to effectively track business reviews on Yelp, Yahoo, and all other major review sites? Sign up for a free trial of ReviewTrackers, an online review and reputation management platform for businesses looking to centralize, analyze, and generate customer reviews.