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As a Yelp reviewer, you can help people in your community find the best businesses and organizations to patronize. Additionally, you might become a local influencer if people like your reviews a lot. Making your reviews helpful to readers will elevate your status as a Yelper and will be the best help to your community. Fortunately, a good Yelp review comes down to the details you provide.


[Edit]Crafting Your Review

  1. Review the business within 24-48 hours of visiting. As time passes, you’ll forget aspects of your experience and likely won’t be able to provide the best possible review. Do your best to rate businesses or organizations within 2 days of visiting them. This way your experience will still be fresh in your mind.[1]
    Write a Helpful Yelp Review Step 1.jpg
    • It might be tempting to review a location you’ve visited in the past so you can increase your review count. However, this is typically unhelpful to the Yelp community.
  2. Set a conversational tone so readers feel like you’re a friend. Keep your language simple, friendly, and relatable so it feels like a conversation. Additionally, incorporate your unique perspective so your review feels personalized. Before you publish your review, read over it to make sure it has a smooth flow.[2]
    Write a Helpful Yelp Review Step 2.jpg
    • For instance, you’d write something like, “These tacos make going to work every day worth it. If this food truck ever moves to a new location, I’ll be applying for a job there,” rather than, “The tacos are authentic and flavorful, reminding me of a dish I enjoyed while in Mexico. I can taste lime juice and Serrano peppers on the meat, as expected for this recipe.”
  3. Tell a story so your review engages readers. People love a good story, so use your experience to craft a good tale. Instead of listing why you did or didn’t like a business, describe your experience from start to finish. Be concise but provide enough details for readers to follow along.[3]
    Write a Helpful Yelp Review Step 3.jpg
    • You could write, “We arrived just before the dinner rush, so we scored a great table by the front window. The hostess and server were so friendly that we felt at home immediately. The menu offers so many options that my date and I were tempted by 2 appetizers in addition to our entrees. We ordered the calamari and ahi tuna slices for apps, and 4 specialty rolls for dinner. Both the Hawaii and Volcano rolls are worthy of any foodie’s bucket list, while the Philly roll isn’t their best offering. We enjoyed the Orange Lover roll but likely won’t order it again soon. After our meal, our server Kate offered us a small scoop of green tea ice cream as part of a promotion the restaurant is doing. In the future, I’ll be sure to order the ice cream after dinner because it’s so tasty. We will definitely be returning for another date night soon!”
  4. Write at least 2 paragraphs so your review isn’t short. Yelp encourages users to write long reviews because they’re typically more helpful. A short review can’t provide readers with a detailed experience or good tips for getting the most out of a visit. Set a goal of writing at least 2 paragraphs so you know your reviews are comprehensive enough to help community members.[4]
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    • It’s okay to write a longer review. In fact, long reviews can be especially helpful to readers.
  5. Illustrate your experiences with details rather than blanket statements. You might be tempted to write things like “I had a great time” or “this place is awesome.” However, these kind of blanket statements aren’t very helpful to other Yelpers. Instead, give specific examples about what you liked or didn’t like to show people what you experienced.[5]
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    • As an example, this review wouldn’t be helpful to readers because it’s vague: “Nadia is a good dog groomer. I will be back.”
    • Instead, you could write something like this: “My dog Toby gets excited every time he sees Nadia, so grooming visits no longer feel like a chore. She genuinely loves dogs and showers Toby with pets and praise, which seems to make him feel comfortable with her. Nadia only washes Toby with products I approved, and she cuts his fur to match the style I ask for every time. On our last visit, Nadia even offered Toby a free treat at the end of our visit. I couldn’t ask for a better groomer!”
  6. Incorporate humor so community members want to keep reading. While it’s not a requirement that you be funny, including jokes and amusing observations in your review can help people enjoy it more. When writing a humorous review, stick to light-hearted jokes and skip the sarcasm.[6]
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    • You might write something like, “I have to bring a $5 bill when I visit this bakery because otherwise I’d die from eating too many churros. The $5 covers exactly 2 churros, and that’s all I need to eat,” or “It took so long for them to bring me sour cream and butter that my potato started growing roots.”
  7. Post 1-3 photos that document your visit. Photos take your Yelp review to the next level, so they’re an essential part of your post. Take several photos while you’re visiting an establishment and upload a couple of favorites to your review. To add a photo, publish your review, and then go to the business or organization’s page. Drag the photo you want to post onto the page and drop it. The photo will automatically upload and go to your review.[7]
    Write a Helpful Yelp Review Step 7.jpg
    • You can’t post photos until after you publish your review. Yelp automatically adds any photos you post to the bottom of your review.

[Edit]Adding Better Details

  1. Provide an overview of the basics, like date, time, cost, location, and parking. Community members want to know what to expect from a business. Include information about what goods and services an establishment offers and how much their goods or services cost. Additionally, mention the neighborhood or part of the city where the establishment is located, as well as where patrons can park. Give your readers the date you went and time as well. The date tells the readers how relevant the review is. The time helps them correlate rush-time, off season service and view versus otherwise.[8]
    Write a Helpful Yelp Review Step 8.jpg
    • Write, “This quaint ice cream shop is on the edge of Midtown, so street parking is all that’s available. They make their ice cream in-house and offer both dairy and dairy-free options. Cups range in price from $3.50-$6.00 each, while cones are an extra $1.00.”
  2. Evaluate the customer service. Since customer service is super important, it’s always helpful to discuss how you were treated at a business or organization. Tell your readers how employees treated you and give specific examples of what they did or said. This can help community members decide if they want to go to an establishment.[9]
    Write a Helpful Yelp Review Step 9.jpg
    • Say something like, “The cat adoption specialist greeted me as soon as I walked in. Every staff member I encountered spoke to me with kindness and asked how they could help.”
  3. Describe the appearance, cleanliness, and ambiance of the location. Paint a picture for other Yelpers so they have an idea of what to expect. Write about the decor, furniture arrangement, and “vibe” that the establishment creates. Additionally, talk about how clean the place looked and whether or not you saw any employees cleaning.[10]
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    • Write, “The coffee shop is in a quaint, brick-front building in downtown. Inside, the owners have left 1 wall of exposed brick and painted the other walls a warm yet bright off-white color. The decor includes a rotating display of art by local artists, which is all for sale. It has a slightly retro vibe and looks super clean.”
    • Take a few photos of the interior to help you remember what it looks like.
  4. Tell community members how long you waited to be served. Don’t just discuss how long you waited when you had a bad experience. Make a habit of including your wait time in every review. Be specific about the time frame, how many other customers were present, and how you felt while you waited.[11]
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    • Write something like, “Since I arrived before the lunch rush, I received my food within 15 minutes of ordering. I hardly noticed the wait, however, because the ambiance is so relaxing.”
  5. Mention stand-out staff, products, or services. If there was something specific that you loved about the establishment, talk about it in your review. Tell readers how a staff member went above-and-beyond for you, which products are the best the business has to offer, or which services keep you coming back. Other Yelpers might take these tips as recommendations.[12]
    Write a Helpful Yelp Review Step 12.jpg
    • You could write, “Sasha mixed up a special drink just for me, and it was fantastic!” or “While everything I’ve eaten here has been delicious, the shrimp enchiladas are the best I’ve ever tasted.”
  6. Offer tips for a specific diet or personal identity if applicable. Your unique perspective may be helpful to other readers if you follow a special diet or are a member of a particular group. Incorporate your tips for users who might be similar to you. For instance, you might discuss how a restaurant’s menu accounts for people with food allergies or which entrees fit a keto diet plan. Similarly, you might highlight a cafe’s Pride decorations if you’re a member of the LGBTQ+ community or a business’s accessibility if you have a physical limitation.[13]
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    • Write something like, “The Burger Barn is a great place for people with food allergies because they pledge to use clean cookware when preparing meals for people with food allergies to minimize cross-contamination. Additionally, they have labels to help people find which dishes are gluten-free, dairy-free, and nut-free.”

[Edit]Composing a Helpful Negative Review

  1. Contact the business’s management team before you turn to Yelp. If you’re still in the establishment, ask to speak to a manager. Otherwise, call to talk to a manager to discuss what happened. Explain why you are unsatisfied and what you want them to do. Give management a chance to fix what’s wrong.[14]
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    • You might say, “We’ve been waiting for our appetizer for 30 minutes, and it came out cold. We want it replaced, but don’t want to wait another 30 minutes.”
    • Don’t write a bad review while you’re in the business or organization. Wait until the entire situation has been resolved, then write your review.

      Tip: Yelp recommends you visit a business or organization multiple times before writing a negative review. It’s possible that 1 bad experience was a fluke.

  2. Give yourself a chance to calm down before you write a negative review. When you have a bad experience, writing a scathing Yelp review might feel like the perfect way to calm down. However, this is typically a recipe for an unhelpful review. Instead, take a few deep breaths, count to 10, and clear your mind. Wait until you feel cool and collected before you write your review.[15]
    Write a Helpful Yelp Review Step 15.jpg
    • Sometimes people who work at a business may treat you unfairly. That’s not at all appropriate for them to do, but it might not be helpful to give a low rating to a business because of 1 person. It’s okay to talk about how rude that person was in your review, but don’t let it overshadow the location’s appearance or quality of the product or service.
  3. Use facts rather than emotions when backing up your claims. A bad experience can leave you feeling angry, ignored, and frustrated. While you have every right to feel that way, don’t let these emotions cloud your review. Instead, provide factual details about what happened and leave out how it made you feel.[16]
    Write a Helpful Yelp Review Step 17.jpg
    • Don’t write something like, “Going to this bar ruined my Friday night. The bartender ignored me all night in favor of a group of hot girls. I felt like total crap and ended up going home early.”
    • Write something like this instead: “I waited 15 minutes to be greeted by the bartender, who then forgot to bring me my drink. I saw him serve a group of 4 other girls at least 1 drink and 1 shot each while I waited 30 minutes for a drink that never came. I finally gave up and left, never knowing if my drink ever arrived.”
  4. Focus a negative review on how the business can improve. It’s common for unhelpful negative reviews to list everything that went wrong and why the reviewer was dissatisfied. However, this is rarely helpful to either the community or the business. Instead, specify how the establishment could have better served you so they know what kinds of improvements they could make.[17]
    Write a Helpful Yelp Review Step 16.jpg
    • For example, “The staff was rude and the food sucked” is a review that helps no one. Instead, you might write, “It would be helpful if management set guidelines for how staff should speak to customers and when they are permitted to use their phones. I felt ignored by the girl behind the front counter, who played on her phone the entire duration of my visit. Additionally, my food came out undercooked and with too much sauce. I asked for a replacement, which was burnt.”


  • Review various types of businesses and organizations, not just restaurants and bars. Write reviews for places like shops, hair salons, and dog groomers.[18]
  • Proofread your reviews so you can fix any errors or typos.[19]


  • Your reviews may get filtered out of the business or organization’s page if you aren’t active on the site. Post reviews regularly, make friends on Yelp, and consider linking Yelp to your Facebook or Twitter.[20]



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