SBA News and Views

Blogs.SBA News and Views


SBA and Yelp Present: Success with Online Reviews

Comment Count:

Comments welcome on this page. See Rules of Conduct.

SBA and Yelp Present: Success with Online Reviews

By Stephen Morris, SBA Official
Published: January 21, 2014

Editor's note: This was originally posted on Yelp's blog.


Sharing what you dig and what you don’t is nothing new, but today this consumer word-of-mouth happens at lightning speed online, in the form of reviews. What’s more is that in a recent national survey, 85% of consumers said that they read online reviews about local businesses. With that in mind, Yelp and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) launched the Success With Online Reviews initiative to help America’s small businesses successfully engage with online reviewers.



The kickoff event was held this past week at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) where local business owners were invited to learn online marketing insights from a panel of business owner experts and reviewers from Yelp's Elite squad. The panelists included Pam Nelson of Butter Lane Cupcakes, Michael Brau of Dorado Tacos, and Jay Sofer of Lockbusters (who also holds the title of most reviewed locksmith in New York on Yelp). During the interactive session, attendees learned several key points including what motivates online reviewers to write as well as the impact of customer service on ratings -- it turns out the highest rated businesses tend to be focused on providing a great customer experience. Another pearl of wisdom from the panelists was that consumers actually like it when business owners respond to their online reviews.



In the coming months Yelp and the SBA will bring these local expert workshops to several key cities around the country, as well as host a series of webinars which begins on February 11th at 2PM EST. For additional dates, times, and workshop locations be sure to check out


The Success With Online Reviews initiative will run through National Small Business Week (May 12-16).

About the Author:

Stephen Morris

SBA Official

Stephen Morris is online media coordinator for the U.S. Small Business Administration where he manages digital outreach to the small business community.


Online reviews are invaluable to a business. Potential clients put a lot of validity into seeing reviews from existing clients.
Encouraging customers to leave online reviews is one of the easiest, most powerful online strategies for small businesses. Our company has put together a guide for business owners. Email me (in my profile) for a link to the video and our free online reputation evaluation tool.
What a great initiative, this will bring even more credibility to the online reviews. Congratulations on this great idea!
This is great, not only is it beneficial for SBOwners but progressing social commerce as the future of retailing.
Creative way to bring both the giants under one roof, joint initiative of yelp & SBA is really going to bring many progressive information for the betterment of small business. Hope the teaming bears fruitful result in all field.

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to leave comments. If you already have an account, Log In to leave your comment.

New users, Register for a new account and join the conversation today!