Publish Date:
March 8, 2024

Yelp vs. Google Reviews: Where Should You Reply to Reviews?

This guide to Google reviews vs. Yelp compares key details about both platforms and explains why businesses should have active accounts on both sites in 2024.

Google and Yelp are two of the most popular review sites — by a massive margin. Google accounts for nearly three quarters (73%) of all online reviews as of 2024, with Yelp meanwhile receiving close to 180 million monthly visitors.

As a business owner, you need to be taking advantage of both platforms' enormous visibility by responding to all of your Yelp and Google reviews. But how do they stack up against each other, and what are some pros and cons to be aware of?

In this article, we'll compare some key aspects of Yelp and Google reviews for businesses, including:

  • What types of reviewers and businesses are on each platform
  • What sort of customer support each platform provides for businesses
  • How easy or difficult it is to start using each platform
  • Whether consumers think Yelp or Google has more fake reviews
  • Benefits and potential drawbacks of each platform

We'll also answer some FAQs about Yelp vs. Google reviews.

Google reviews overview

Here's what you need to know about the reviews displayed on Google Maps. 

google reviews overview

User base 

Some review platforms are industry-specific and target a certain market, like Zocdoc for dental and medical patients or Zillow for renters and home-buyers. Others — like Google Maps — feature all types of business reviews, which means they also attract all types of users. 

No matter who makes up your customer base, you need to prioritize Google reviews to make the most impact. 

google reviews user base

Google review authenticity 

Brightlocal data shows that exactly half of the consumers surveyed — 50% — felt "confident" that they saw fake reviews on Google in 2022. That percentage was identical in 2021.

Despite this, Google still reigns supreme regarding trust and perceived authenticity. For example, 66% of consumers say they would be "most likely to trust" Google for healthcare-related reviews, compared to just 12% for the Better Business Bureau (BBB), 9% for Yelp, 6% for Facebook, and 3% for Apple Maps. Similar trends occur with other types of businesses and industries, such as:

  • Real Estate — Google (57%), the BBB (17%), Yelp (9%), Facebook (8%), Apple Maps (4%)
  • Professional Trades — Google (53%), the BBB (21%), Yelp (11%), Facebook (7%), Apple Maps (4%)
  • Accommodations — Google (42%), Yelp (10%), the BBB (6%), Facebook (6%), Apple Maps (4%) 

Customer support

If you experience an issue with your business listing, you’ll need to troubleshoot it using one of Google’s help articles. Here are the resources that Google provides for business owners and general users:  

Ease of use

Once you create a Google Business Profile, it’s easy to edit your Google business listing, answer Q&As, and respond to positive or negative reviews. Here are three Google business site steps to get started: 

  1. Create your profile or sign in here.
  2. Claim and verify your business following Google's instructions.
  3. Start responding to your Google reviews ASAP. You can respond directly from Google Search or Google Maps, or save time by using a personalized review response service that provides your customers with fast, on-brand replies.

    Here is a guide to answering positive google review responses with ease.

Platform options

  • Notifications and alerts — You can turn on various review alerts by managing your notification settings within Google. 
  • Business information — Google enables businesses to share and edit information such as location, hours of operation, and customer FAQs. Additionally, users can browse reviews by selecting common keywords, such as “valet service” for a hotel or “vegan” for a restaurant.
  • Review removal — Negative reviews can only be removed if they violate Google’s terms of service. You cannot pay to have authentic bad reviews taken down.
  • Responding to Google reviews — You can respond using Apple or Android devices, on mobile or desktop, and by using Google Maps or Search. Here are Google’s instructions for getting started. 
google reviews platform options

Google reviews pros 

  • Data shows that consumers trust Google more than other online review platforms. Whether positive or negative, a Google review carries more weight than a review from other sites.
  • Google is the largest, most popular review platform, which means it drives the most traffic. More people are likely to find your Google reviews — and be influenced by them — than your reviews on any other site, including Yelp.
  • It’s free to create a Google business listing.

Google reviews cons 

  • It can be difficult to get in touch with Google’s customer support team if you need help resolving a complex or serious issue. The only way to speak with a representative over the phone is to contact Google’s corporate office. 
  • Some business owners express frustration with Google’s limited customization options, according to Trustradius.

Here is a complete guide to best google review responses,

Yelp reviews overview

Now that we've gone over how Google reviews work, let's look at Yelp's platform. 
This article covers in detail how to respond to yelp reviews

yelp reviews overview

User base 

Like Google, Yelp is a general review platform for various types of businesses, attracting a wide range of users. Some examples of businesses on Yelp include hotels, restaurants, financial services, medical services, and pet care services. 

Refer to Yelp’s complete business category list to ensure that your small business is listed appropriately and is as easy as possible for Yelp users to find. 

yelp reviews user base

Yelp review authenticity 

Compared to Google, fewer Yelp reviews are perceived as being fake. According to a survey by BrightLocal, only 25% of consumers felt "confident" about seeing fake reviews on Yelp during the past year, compared to the 50% — twice as many — who said the same about Google.

In spite of these trends, consumers still trust Yelp less than Google. For example, only 29% of consumers said they would be most likely to trust Yelp for food and drink reviews, compared to 44% who said they would trust Google the most.

yelp review authenticity

Like Google, Yelp tries to maintain authenticity and has a strict policy against practices like:

  • Paying for 5-star ratings
  • Posting fake negative reviews of your competitors
  • Creating fake positive reviews about your own business 

Customer support

If you experience an issue or have a question regarding your Yelp account, you can reach Yelp’s customer support representatives by calling (877) 767-9357, Monday through Friday, from 6:00 A.M. to 7:00 P.M. PST. You can also refer to Yelp’s online help articles or start a chat session with an online representative. 

Learn more about the ways you can contact Yelp customer support

Ease of use 

It's easy for your business to respond to a positive review or negative review on Yelp. 

Start by creating a Yelp account for free. Once you have an account, you can create and manage a business page. You can also respond to customers directly from the platform on desktop or mobile or by using a done-for-you review reply service. 

Platform options 

  • Notifications and alerts—Yelp allows you to set your own alert and notification preferences. Learn how to manage your Yelp settings on different devices.   
  • Business information — Yelp lets you share information about your location, hours, services offered, and FAQs. Businesses can also tag themselves with various features and attributes, such as “women-owned,” “accepts credit cards,” or “free wifi,” to help more potential customers find them.

yelp review platform options

 

  • Review removal — You can’t remove bad Yelp reviews simply because they are negative, but you can report reviews that violate Yelp's terms of service. 
  • Responding to Yelp reviews — Yelp gives you the option to respond to reviews privately or publicly. Here’s Yelp’s guide to responding to reviews on Yelp

Yelp reviews pros 

  • Yelp is free to start using, easy to set up, and has one of the largest user bases among all review platforms.
  • Yelp arguably provides better (or at least more accessible) customer support than Google. Small businesses can reach a team of representatives by message or phone, rather than needing to contact corporate or rely on help articles.
  • Yelp is a mobile-friendly platform.

Yelp review cons 

  • While it's free to create a Yelp business page, this review platform can get expensive fast if you decide to advertise on Yelp, as the starting cost is around $300 per month.
  • Although Yelp ranks high in trust and popularity, it still offers less online visibility than Google.

Google reviews vs. Yelp: final thoughts 

Here are a few parting thoughts about Yelp vs. Google reviews to bear in mind while developing a review management strategy for your business:

  • Google accounts for most online reviews (73%), with Yelp in second place but still far behind (6%).
  • Significantly more people check Google reviews than Yelp: 87% of consumers vs. 48% in 2022.
  • Google is perceived as providing more trustworthy reviews than Yelp, particularly within the healthcare, beauty, entertainment, real estate, and professional trades industries.
  • Businesses can’t pay to remove negative reviews on either platform.
  • Both platforms ban fake reviews and prohibit review manipulation.
  • It's free for local businesses to create business listings on both platforms.

    If you want examples of how to respond to reviews for specific businesses, read these articles:

Considering the enormous impact that each review platform has on consumers, it's crucial to create and maintain an active business account on both.

responding to google and yelp reviews

Whether your reviews are predominantly positive or negative, your business can boost its online reputation, retain more of its existing customers, and attract more potential customers by responding promptly to all reviews on both platforms. 

ResponseScribe makes it effortless by providing custom-made responses for you — not just on Google or Yelp, but more than 50 leading review sites, including Facebook, Tripadvisor, the BBB, Trustpilot, Apple Maps, and more. 

Every response is personalized to the reviewer, aligned with your branding, and delivered within minutes to hours. Your business can choose an AI-assisted or fully human-powered writing strategy, and always has the option to approve responses before they’re published. Our white-glove response service also includes responses to Google Q&As, along with 24/7 direct chat access to your own dedicated responder.

ResponseScribe pricing starts at just $19 per month. Explore the plans we offer and find the perfect fit for your business

Want to go beyond responding? Shout About Us offers the full suite of review management solutions, including review removal, generation, and tracking.

Whether you’re looking for a centralized review management platform, an automated review response service, or both, Shout About Us makes it fast and easy to get up and running. Through our review monitoring, removal, response, and generation services, we empower your business to get more reviews, rank higher in local search results, improve customer satisfaction, and turn potential customers into loyal superfans. 

Get started with a free tial of ResponseScribe— and discover why more than 10,000 businesses trust our team with their reputations. 

FAQs

Is Google reviews or Yelp more accurate?

The accuracy of a Google or Yelp review depends on the person who writes it. Fortunately, both platforms prohibit deceptive, fraudulent, or manipulative reviews, which means your competitors risk penalties if they attempt to leave fake negative reviews for your business. If you receive a review that’s inaccurate or is directed at the wrong business — which might, for instance, result from a name or address mix-up — you can flag the review for removal by Yelp or Google.

Is it better to leave reviews on Google or Yelp?

Data shows that consumers use and trust Google more than Yelp when it comes to online reviews. However, while Google might have the edge, your business should aim to collect (and respond to) as many reviews as possible on both platforms. The more positive reviews your business receives on Google or Yelp, the more likely it is that consumers will encounter your brand, as both sites offer users the option to sort businesses by rating.

Is it better to advertise on Yelp or Google?

The answer to this question depends on your target audience and the goal of your advertising campaign. However, since it has a larger user base and provides better visibility, Google is likely to be more effective for advertising than Yelp. Google also provides more ways to advertise, with Yelp offering Yelp Sponsored Ads and Yelp Enhanced Profiles while Google offers video ads, display ads, app ads, local ads, call-only ads, and more.

Do Yelp reviews show up on Google?

The following is quoted directly from the Yelp Support Center: “Sometimes business information, content posted by Yelpers (such as reviews or photos) gets displayed in Google search results but doesn't match what's on the actual Yelp site. This is because Yelp is dynamic, and the site content changes frequently.” In short, Yelp reviews do appear in Google searches, but may look different on Yelp itself.

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