Yelp Extortion Rumors

Is Yelp Lying To You?

Ahh Yelp – Love them or hate them (and most business owners hate them) there’s no denying that this social review site has a powerful impact on your business, and the bottom line of that business.
Here’s a direct quote from a customer that wrote in to me this week.

Our clients have sent a number of positive reviews to Yelp, the only one Yelp has posted is a negative one. I contacted them about this and their response was, “if I advertised with them I would have control over the reviews that are posted”
I have no problem with a negative review in the middle of the positive ones, it is when they will only post the negative review that frustrates me.

Yelp, are you being serious? Isn’t that extortion? Pay me, and you can manipulate the reviews and get the ones you want posted.
Officially Yelp denies that paying for advertising has any effect on your ability to post which reviews are shown on their site.
Here’s one such town hall meeting that Yelp had with some business owners in Sacramento where they denied that advertising with them actually gave business owners the ability to manipulate their reviews.
Have you ever heard from Yelp’s sales team asking for you to advertise with them in exchange for better reviews? Please tell us at We would love to know.

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