Yelp vs Google Reviews: Which is Better for Your Business?

Yelp vs Google Reviews: Which is Better for Your Business?

Yelp vs Google Review

People often check existing customer reviews on Yelp and Google Reviews before trying new products and services, specifically from local businesses.

Both platforms are incredible and inform prospective customers a lot about any business. But which one should you use to enhance your business presence: Yelp or Google reviews?

This blog will thoroughly explore the various aspects of both Yelp and Google reviews and compare them to guide you on how to utilize both of these platforms effectively. Let’s dive in!

Yelp Vs. Google Reviews: A Quick Glance at the Key Differences

Google Reviews and Yelp are distinct platforms, each with its unique features. Before diving into an in-depth analysis of both, let’s first highlight the key differences between Google Reviews and Yelp.

Google Reviews vs Yelp Reviews

Understanding Yelp Review

To better understand if Yelp is the right fit for your business, you need to know how it works and its key advantages and disadvantages. Let’s start by getting to know Yelp better.

What is Yelp?

Yelp is a very popular online business listing platform that hosts user-generated reviews about local businesses of all sizes. The main objective of Yelp is to assist customers in making better and more informed buying decisions by showcasing the reviews left behind by other community members.

Businesses can also utilize Yelp to their advantage. You can list your products and services on Yelp and connect with potential and existing customers.

For instance, in the Yelp dashboard, you can see a list of restaurants for customers to compare on the basis of star ratings and the reviews of the customers along with business information such as address, amenities and more.

Yelp review page

How Does Yelp Work?

Using Yelp is simple. Let us see how it works:

  • Search Functionality: Potential customers who are in a decision-making phase can search for businesses by entering search keywords related to the type of business or service they’re looking for, along with their location.As seen in the below image, the users can search for cafe’s, restaurants, plumbers, and more in their location and compare multiple reviews of different businesses that the platform recommends.
Search feature on Yelp
    • Listings and Filters: Yelp shows a list of businesses matching the search criteria of the customers, which they can further refine using filters such as distance, price range, and categories.As visible in the image here, Yelp provides multiple filter options such as price, category and more. Using these filters, users can quickly find what they need.
Setting a filter on Yelp
    • Business Details: Clicking on a listing gives users more information about the business, such as address, contact details, operating hours, and user-generated photos.For instance, take a look at the image below—you’ll see what Yelp shows when you look for a restaurant. It provides details such as menu, location, and reviews. This kind of information helps customers make informed decisions about where to eat. Yelp makes it simpler to get an idea of what the restaurant offers before a customer chooses to go there.
adding business details on Yelp
    • Reviews and Ratings: Users with a Yelp account can leave detailed reviews and also leave star ratings (between 1 and 5 stars). They can also interact with reviews shared by others by liking, sharing, commenting on them, and labeling them as “useful,” “funny,” or “cool.”To get a clearer understanding, take a look at the screenshot below. It shows what Yelp’s ratings and reviews section looks like.
Reviews and ratings on Yelp
    • Interaction: Users can bookmark businesses, follow them for updates and notifications about special offers or events, and message them directly through Yelp.Look at the save button in the below image. Users can simply click on the button to bookmark the business of their choice.
Users can bookmark a business on Yelp
    • Make Reservations: Users can try to make reservations or appointments, place online orders, or access other services through Yelp.For instance, in the image below the Yelp business page of Dairy Queen. It features a “Order Food” button. Users who are satisfied with the reviews and other information shared on the business page, can directly order food by just clicking on this button.
Users can take action with a business on Yelp

Advantages of The Yelp Review Platform

1. Wide Exposure

More than 80 million people visit Yelp each month to search for businesses of all types. Is that not a huge number? Yelp has a wide range of users who add reviews about different brands every day. According to a Yelp survey, about 57% of users contact a business they found on Yelp within a day.

Therefore, creating business profiles on Yelp can be very helpful in boosting brand visibility and recognition. By featuring your business on platforms like Yelp, you will open doors to a wider audience, giving your business amazing exposure for engagement and growth.

2. Recommendation Feature

Yelp has an amazing recommendation feature that evaluates reviews based on its quality, reliability, and actions on Yelp. Yelp’s automatic evaluation software looks for the reviews that are most reliable and useful for regular users. But what constitutes a recommended review on Yelp? Let’s have a look:

  • Active Users: Yelp’s recommendation software prioritizes reviews from active users who regularly contribute to the platform.
  • Usefulness and Reliability: Recommended reviews are selected based on their perceived usefulness and reliability to other users.
  • Quality over Quantity: Yelp emphasizes quality over quantity, preferring reviews that provide detailed and helpful information over generic or unhelpful content.
  • Adherence to Policy: Reviews gathered by businesses or suspected of being influenced by business owners are not recommended.

While Yelp recommends some verified reviews, about 22% are marked unrecommended as they are potentially fraudulent or given by less active users. On the contrary, Recommended reviews, such as the one in the image below, make the user experience easier by helping them know which reviews to trust more.

Recommended reviews on Yelp

3. Ease of Use

One of the reasons why users love to use Yelp is that it is very easy to use. The best part about using Yelp is that users do not need to log in with a username to check for reviews, making access to reviews simpler and more convenient.

As people need not go through the lengthy process of signing up, the ease of use encourages the users to visit Yelp more frequently.

Disadvantages of The Yelp Review Platform

1. Hiding Genuine Reviews

Yelp, as we know, has a review recommendation feature that shows verified reviews more prominently. At the same time, the same system moves certain less reliable reviews to the “Not Recommended” section of the business profile. There is a chance that this may lead to some genuine reviews being hidden (although still accessible) from the user.

2. Getting Negative Reviews Without Getting Listed

What’s surprising is that you can still receive reviews on Yelp even if your business is not listed on the platform. Anyone can list your business and start attracting reviews, whether you claim it at the end of the day or not.

Negative reviews on your business profile, which are beyond your control, hold significant power in shaping your online reputation. These negative reviews can harm your image and repel potential customers.

Thus, proactive reputation management strategies, such as providing exceptional customer service, responding to negative comments on social media, optimizing your business profile, and more, are important to managing your online presence and building customer trust.

3. Expensive Enhanced Listing

Another drawback of Yelp is its costly enhanced listings. At $350, they are very expensive, especially for small businesses.

Although the enhanced listing profile has some incredible features, such as CTA buttons, slideshows, and more, their higher cost makes them prohibitively expensive for many businesses. This makes Yelp slightly less usable for some businesses.

Understanding Google Reviews?

Google Reviews are user-generated reviews and ratings of businesses, locations, or services accessible through Google’s platform. As part of Google Business Profile, they feature prominently in Google Maps and search results, providing valuable insights for potential customers.

Unlike Yelp, Google Reviews is well integrated into Google’s search ecosystem, enhancing a business’s visibility. They give equal weight to all reviews, ensuring a more accurate overall rating. Moreover, many Google Reviews can significantly boost a business’s search ranking, enhancing its online visibility and potential customer reach.

As Google has about 83% of the search engine market share, securing a higher rank on Google search results through positive reviews can immensely benefit a company’s visibility and success.

Below is a reference image of how a Google Business Profile page would look like if you search for ‘Starbucks near you’ on Google. It shows the summary of everything you need to know about the local Starbucks—address, phone number, hours of operation, reviews, and even photos.

Google Business Profile page

How Does Google Review Work?

Let us see how Google reviews work:

    • Create a Google Business Profile: Start by creating a Google Business Profile and listing your business there. This platform helps you manage how your brand and its products appear across Google’s products. It will also connect your business with Google Maps, making it easier for potential customers to find you.
    • Enhance Your Google Business Profile: Once your Google profile has been verified, ensure it is attractive enough with the necessary information to encourage potential customers to click on it. You can do this by:
      • Adding relevant information
      • Uploading good-quality pictures
      • Adding address and hours of operations
      • Getting Google reviews

Once you are done with it, your Google search result will look something like the screenshots shared below.

Optimized Google Business Profile
    • Seek Google Reviews: As cumbersome as it may seem, getting Google reviews is easy if you have a process in place. You just need to request your customers politely, either in person, via email, through text, or through other methods.
    • Thank the Customers for Review: Say “Thank you” to your customers whenever they leave a good review. If possible, send personalized responses to each customer who gives a review.

While you thank the customers for good reviews, you must respond promptly to negative reviews as well.

Advantages of Google Reviews

1. Boost to Local SEO

Google Review profile is a search engine and review platform in one. By optimizing your Google business profile properly, you can elevate your local SEO rankings, thereby boosting your website traffic.

Also, the reviews help to boost the trust in the business, leading to better click-through rates and higher visibility among potential customers seeking relevant services or products.

2. Higher Volume of Reviews

Given that Google is a platform used by millions of users globally and has an easy review process, businesses have a better chance of getting feedback than on other platforms.

The platform’s wide reach helps attract more reviews, and this growth in the number of feedback enhances your business’s online presence and credibility, making it a preferred choice for organizations.

3. Local Ranking Factor

Google Reviews are a ranking factor that impacts a business’s online reputation. Therefore, getting more positive reviews on your business listing helps you get a higher ranking in local results on Google Maps and search. This emphasizes the need to use Google Reviews strategically in managing your online reputation.

Disadvantages of Google Reviews

1. Lesser Opportunities for Removing Fake Reviews

Google is continuously working on improving its detection of fraud reviews. However, fake reviews still find their way in.

While you may be willing to remove such reviews immediately, they can not be directly removed from your Google business listing. The only option is to report it to Google and wait for them to review it. Google will remove reviews that violate Google’s policies.

2. Users can Leave Star Ratings Without any Comments

Users have the ability to leave star ratings on Google Reviews without writing any comments. This feature allows for quick and straightforward feedback, but it may lack the depth and detail provided by written reviews.

This also potentially limits the authenticity of the review and insights available to understand the business’s offerings and quality of service.

3. Impact of Negative Reviews

Negative reviews on Google can significantly affect a business’s reputation, as they are clearly displayed alongside search results. Unlike some platforms, there’s no option to hide or filter out certain reviews, making negative feedback more visible to potential customers.

impact of negative reviews

Google vs Yelp Reviews: Factors to Consider While Choosing Between Google Reviews and Yelp

To help you determine which platform, Yelp or Google Reviews, best suits your business needs, we’ve assessed each based on certain factors such as user base, review authenticity, and business visibility.

1. User Base: If your business aims to reach a wider audience, Google should be your number one choice.

In 2022, Google experienced a significant rise in usage for local business research, with 87% of individuals turning to the platform, up from 81% in 2021. Conversely, Yelp experienced a decline, with only 48% of respondents utilizing it, down from 53% in 2021.

2. Authenticity of Review: Google and Yelp have strict policies to prevent fraudulent reviews. They use systems such as automated detection systems and human analysts to ensure review integrity.

However, Yelp is a platform with more strict and comprehensive measures to control the quality of reviews. The Yelp user operation team investigates any issues reported by business owners, community members, and Yelp’s automated system.

If any abnormalities are found after the investigation, the team can take punitive actions such as a temporary ban from posting reviews, review or listing removal, search ranking penalties, advertising bans for at least a year, and ongoing monitoring for repeat offenses on the user.

This emphasizes Yelp’s level of review authenticity.

3. Community Engagement: Yelp is known for its engaged community, with users posting pictures and feedback for local businesses very regularly. Yelp has done a great job at nurturing a community-driven approach. This has helped to foster an enhanced sense of engagement and trust with the platform.

On the contrary, Google Reviews has a serviceable approach to its platform with comparatively less focus on community interaction. While users leave reviews on Google Reviews as well, the engagement is less than Yelp’s.

4. Reach and Influence: Google Reviews has the upper hand in terms of reach and influence since it has a global reach and many business listings and search results are integrated into it.

Yelp is more dependent on the US market. However, its more consistent user base and engaged communities make it really effective, especially in industries such as restaurants and bars.


Both Google Reviews and Yelp offer valuable insights and opportunities for businesses to engage with customers and enhance their online reputation. While Google Reviews excels in broader reach and SEO benefits, Yelp stands out for its stringent review authenticity measures and engaged community.

Effectively utilizing both platforms can contribute to enhancing the social customer experience. Businesses should focus on collecting genuine reviews, promptly addressing feedback, and optimizing their profiles for maximum visibility.

Understanding the capabilities of each platform and tailoring strategies accordingly can amplify the impact of customer reviews on business success.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it better to leave a review on Google or Yelp?

Choosing between Google Reviews and Yelp depends on your needs and target audience. Both the platforms have their own advantages, such as Google Reviews offering broader reach and SEO benefits, while Yelp provides stricter review authenticity measures and an engaged community. Both platforms have some unique strengths and drawbacks, making either a valuable choice depending on your objectives.

Are Yelp reviews visible on Google?

Usually, business details and user-generated content from Yelp may appear in Google search results but differ from what is currently displayed on the Yelp website. This happens due to Yelp's dynamic nature, where site content goes through frequent updates and changes.

Can Google and Yelp detect fake reviews?

Google Reviews and Yelp deploy algorithms and AI-powered systems to detect fake reviews. Yelp uses neural networks and supervised learning techniques to analyze linguistic and user-behavior features, while Google utilizes AI algorithms to identify and block fake reviews.

With each day passing, both platforms are improving their capabilities in detecting fake reviews, contributing to the authenticity of their review systems.

About the Author

Picture of Abhas Mathur

Abhas Mathur

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