Yelp moves mobile consumers beyond the Yellow Pages.
Has anyone cracked open a Yellow Pages phone directory since the 90s? I know I haven’t. Yet, like clockwork you hear the thud as the tome gets dumped on your doorstep. There was a time when the Yellow Pages were useful. I don’t know how many times I plopped one in a kitchen chair to raise a toddler up to the table or taught my fifth grade students how to fold and fan the pages to make Christmas tree doorstops.
Occasionally I have even used the Yellow Pages as a business directory and I’m not that old. The white pages were the personal phone directory, but now unless someone gives you their number it is safe to assume they don’t want you or nine hundred ninety-nine telemarketers to know it.
Quick and easy business info on Yelp.
We access business information, phone numbers, details and even photos on our phones or tablets. Yelp is the go-to for local business information. How helpful is Yelp?
Considering the website and app provide information on any location, provides hours of operation, a phone number which my smartphone is happy to auto-dial, and a street address that pops open into GPS directions Yelp is a million times better than the old phone book. You couldn’t haul the Yellow Pages around with you in the car. Unless you were grandma and needed a boost under the steering wheel to see out the window.
You can have Yelp by simply asking Siri or to summon the app. No more stopping to make a phone call when you are lost or left the directions hastily scribbled on a napkin at home.
Customer reviews are opinions. Everybody has one. Read with discernment.
The most controversial aspect of Yelp is the customer reviews. You are probably best off making your own decisions. Often it is the most disgruntled customers who hop online to vent their frustrations. All you have to do is glance at two or three and you will get a feel for whether someone had an off night or whether a Yelp experience at any given business has been good.
Get involved to make Yelp a better tool.
The best way to make use of Yelp is to help Yelp. The more we join together to give honest reviews and pointers about local businesses and events the better the services will be. Just be sure to follow the general rules and guidelines. I like the personal profiles because it is pretty easy to identify if a grouchy diner is a consistent complainer.
Then, we can stay away from the ruckus between Yelp and business owners. If you post a positive review you will know soon enough whether Yelp is honest in their dealings with businesses.
Everyone has an angle and Yelp is looking for advertisers, but that’s what the Yellow Pages did for years. The big ads were designed to get your attention and gain your trust. At least with Yelp you have some consumer input.
Yelp is among my top 10 travel and entertainment apps.
Don’t leave home without it – which is easy to do since it is accessible on your phone. Access it from your laptop or desktop to plan ahead.
For ease of access, options and the sheer number of businesses accessible through Yelp I find it in my essential arsenal of travel and entertainment apps. Besides, you never know what nugget of a restaurant, bar, services or entertainment scene you may uncover. The app enables search by neighborhood in addition to city.
Check in for a peek at the daily review. You may find a great new place of which you have never heard.