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YELP is on the way out

Read all about it > WSJ – Yelp Needs Help.

Conforming what I’ve believed for some time now, Yelp’s future was never bright, and that goes for the entire 3rd Party Reviews business. ( Yelp would have been smart to take that half-a-billion dollar offer from Google when they had the chance – but those smarter-than-you-you-just-dont-get-it VCs knew better )

Yes reviews play an important role in the sales cycle. Reviews make sense as an add-on to search engines and eCommerce sites. I don’t think that’s hard for anyone to see.

Now before you spend your precious time reading my rational to the bottom of the page (which you may not need ) here are your action items:

  • Build and Manage your reviews on search engines (Google, Bing, skip Yahoo)
  • Manage your reviews on eCommerce sites where you sell your products.
  • Try to avoid participating in 3rd Party Reviews when possible (why? read on… )

So back on track – the review business is not a viable stand-alone online business model. As we’ve explained before about the evil that lurks beneath FREE 3rd Party Reviews like Yelp. Yeh its FREE until you depend on it, then your friendly reviews platform transforms into your local crack dealer, you can’t get rid of him and he’s not cheap.

And I might add, only the deranged, disgruntled and those who have no lives thrive there. Normal folks know that, which is why managing reviews is the solution to your bad review when they do arise. Most people will read the reviews – and the bad one’s especially, but the majority respond positively to a business that addresses bad reviews in a mature and realistic fashion.