A note from Alterations.com re Yelp.com
In the past 10 years that we have observed how Yelp works, it is our determination that the online review site Yelp.com is not completely transparent in their review rankings for one major reason. Yelp.com gives advertisers more leeway to break the rules of morality. The more you advertise, the more leeway you get from Yelp moderators. High paying advertisers sometimes get away scot-free with incentivized reviews (and occasionally insincere reviews). This is considered cheating. This is considered buying your way to the top. We have undeniable proof of this if anyone asks.
Yelp has a paid search section, and an organic unpaid search section. That’s ok. Google does the same. It’s the standard practice. But what makes Yelp different from Google is that Google doesn’t factor in how much a company advertises into their organic unpaid search section. If you have a good website with good content with a good reputation, Google will rank you objectively on your merits, regardless of whether or not you advertise with Google. Yelp on the other hand punishes you heavily if you don’t advertise with them. Several of the most important factors that go into ranking for Yelp.com searches can only be attained by advertisers, thereby excluding most businesses that can’t afford to advertise on Yelp. Some of the factors for ranking on Yelp can never be achieved by non-advertisers. We encourage the use of Yelp.com, but we discourage users from using Yelp.com alone since Yelp can be manipulated by the highest bidder.
Normally, companies that speak out against Yelp have poor Yelp ratings and reviews. In our case, we have a relatively good Yelp rating with mostly good reviews. This is not a rant against Yelp, but we simply need to speak up about the injustice we see happening on a daily basis. We are putting ourselves in the line of fire, and will likely be retaliated against by Yelp for speaking our mind. Yelp may call it libel or slander. But we have proof of our statements. We cherish our freedom of speech in The United States. We won’t let Yelp take that away from us.