How I Discovered Yelp
I was deployed in Afghanistan back in 2010 and I was having some sort of discussion with another Marine regarding food. I made some weird comment, “Should I cram an omelet down my throat?” –still my Tagline in Yelp. I can’t remember why I said that, but I did, and everyone was making remarks about the comment. I decided to Google it and I came across a hilarious profile that talks about Omelet’s. Regardless, I pretty much won that discussion and I discovered the amazing features of Yelp. I created a profile and added that hilarious guy. I found out you can find just about any place that interested me when I used their search. I have started to use it to find places and reviews on various places which was very beneficial to me. This was like a general use social media website to me.
Why I Actually Love Yelp
I used to use Yelp occasionally for my personal needs. It wasn’t until iOS 6 came out with Apple’s version of Maps that made Yelp extremely critical to me. Apple Maps uses many different services to find Points of Interest and ratings for those places, primarily Yelp. I love seeing the information pull from Yelp because it is very informative and mostly true. After about a year I mostly use Yelp to discover and find reviews for restaurants. I read into the reviews to discover why the place got it’s rating in the first place.
I contribute to Yelp when I see something wrong. About a week ago I contacted Yelp regarding a place that closed down several years ago. After I had contacted Yelp a few days later they listed the place as closed. A few days ago I noticed hours wrong and incomplete information posted about a restaurant. I had updated the information and sent it to Yelp. I am assuming in a few days that this information will be updated.
I love to write reviews for places especially if they spark my interest. I have written several reviews for Yelp and I will continue to write more.
Misconceptions of Yelp
Many people glance at the star ratings on a business in Yelp and base their opinion solely on this. This isn’t always a good idea because people have there own ways of writing ratings. Some may include how they feel about the cleanliness, how long the food took, or simply because the item didn’t have tomatoes on it. This is why it is important to go through actual peoples reviews to get a better understanding on why people rated the restaurant the way they did.
Usually, websites and other services sort there posts or reviews by the most recent at the top. While Yelp primarily does this, the interaction with the reviews will also move the posts to the top. Yelps default sorting is called, “Yelp Sort”, but you can change how you want Yelp to sort the reviews. Yelp says on their site, “Yelp Sort attempts to show reviews that help consumers make informed decisions. The order is determined by recency, user voting, and other review quality factors. This method is applied to all businesses, sponsors or not.”
So as you can see the primary way of sorting is by date (recency) and then how people interact with the reviews. So if someone clicks “Funny” for a 1 star post that was posted in December of last year when there is a more 5-star recent post, the 1 star post might get moved before the 5-star post. This is because people interact with that 1-star post.
Generally, if you go through companies profiles, you will see a mixture of 1-5 star posts anywhere. You won’t see posts rated by 1-star at the top or anything, but by default using Yelp Sort. It is mostly fair until you have some guy click on Funny or interact with a 1-star post.
Either way I think it’s fair because ratings are done by date and how people interact with the post. As for the ratings, everyone is subject to their own opinion. It is you as a Yelper to look over the reviews and make sound judgement on whether you actually would consider going to that place or not.
Michael J Brancato
Making the world a better place one step at a time.