Yelp: Your Yelp Profile Looks Lost. Go Claim It!
Did you know that Apple Maps, an app included on every device Apple ever made, uses Yelp for its business information?
That’s several million devices that don’t know who you are if you haven’t claimed your Yelp profile.
And guess what?
You can do it in about 5 minutes.
Yelp business profiles: An overview
You might be wondering what exactly a Yelp profile is.
Essentially, a Yelp profile is an online business listing that users can search for and engage with online. It is used by users and businesses alike to discover new places of interest, read reviews, and provide public information about businesses.
And if you don’t claim your profile, your business will likely be considered non-existent to internet-users everywhere.
What does it mean to “claim your profile”? It’s possible that your school is already listed on Yelp, which happens automatically as Yelp constantly checks for new businesses to add to their platform.
It’s your job to claim the listing as yours. By doing so, Yelp trusts you more which means they are more likely to present your school listing in search results.
You also get a “Claimed” badge to let users know your school is actively being managed. This goes a long way in the mind of a prospective parent.
The importance of local listings for your Montessori school
Before I show you exactly how to claim your Yelp profile, I want to explain why this is so important. First, let’s look through the lense of the search engines (we’ll mainly talk about Google here).
As an online entity, you most likely have a website. This website is viewed by Google and other search engines as your house. Your home. Your place of identity.
Everything you do online either verifies that identify with Google or confuses it. Every post, every online social profile and business listing, every update you make to your website communicates something to Google. If Google sees something that verifies your identity, it rewards you with higher search rankings and more visibility.
If something doesn’t match, such as different phone number on one listing or a typo in your address, or if it simply doesn’t exist, then Google gets confused and doesn’t give you the visibility that you deserve.
By claiming an online profile and verifying it, especially a profile as significant as Yelp, you are giving Google a massive verification of your online identity which will, in turn, boost your ranking. Pretty simple.
There’s also a major benefit from a user’s perspective.
If someone searches for your school from their phone (most Apple Maps/Yelp traffic is mobile) and can’t find it, or worse, find your business profile is void of any information, what kind of message does that send?
Well, it tells them you aren’t trustworthy or legitimate. And to be frank, I can’t think of a worse message to send to a prospective parent.
The 5-minute solution
So let’s fix this. I’m going to lay out exactly what you need to do to claim your Yelp listing. You’ll need:
- A computer (hopefully you already knew that)
- Your official school information (address, contact info, etc)
- Your official school email
- Official images of your school to upload
1. Go to biz.yelp.com
2. Search for your school name
If your school appears, a button will appear on the right hand side that says “Claim.”
However, if your school doesn’t appear, click on the link that says “Add your business to Yelp.”
This will take you to a page with several fields where you will need to…
3. Enter your official school information
It’s vitally important here that you do two things:
- Use the same information as what is on your website
- Completely fill the form out
These steps ensure you get the most benefit out of claiming your profile.
Pro-tip: A lot of Montessori schools list “Montessori School” as their primary category. While logical and seemingly obvious, this can sometimes lead to less people seeing your profile. This is because less people search for Montessori schools. Instead, they search for elementary or preschools, which is what we recommended listing as your primary category.
4. Verify your email account
Click submit and then check your email. You should received an email immediately from Yelp to verify your ownership.
That’s it! Once you verify your email, you’ll be able to login to Yelp and manage your brand new profile. Which leads me to my bonus tip:
5. Login to Yelp (or create a profile) and upload pictures
For extra credit, login to Yelp and upload any official school photos you have on hand. You’ll want a picture of the outside of your school and high quality images of the inside to give visitors a sense of what going to your school actually looks like.
If you have permission to use some of your children in the photos, that’s even better. Showing children actively engaged in Montessori learning is the best possible message you could send.
Much better than a missing or blank profile, that’s for sure.
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