How to Get YELP to Stop Filtering Good Reviews

Let’s cover how to get Yelp to stop filtering good reviews. A happy customer gives you a good review, and then Yelp filters that review. It’s infuriating as a business owner, and it’s not right.


Let’s talk about it…


How to Get Yelp to Stop Filtering Good Reviews

First, you have to know how to know if your customer is even a Yelp user.

How to Identify a Yelper?

To be an official ‘Yelper’ means the following:

  • They have a profile photo.
  • Their Yelp profile is filled out.
  • Has the Yelp app on their phone; this is a ‘tell-tale’ sign.
  • Consistently writes reviews; this can be weekly or monthly.

Those are qualifying questions you could ask; “Hey, do you have the Yelp app on your phone?” If they say no, don’t ask them for a Yelp review. They are not a Yelp user. This is true even if they have been on the app in the past. An official ‘Yelper’ will use the platform regularly and will have quick access using their phone. 

Ask ONLY ‘Yelpers’ to leave a review! If they’re not a ‘Yelper,’ send them to Google or another review site, and send them a link to that site. 



If You’ve Identified an Official ‘Yelper’

Once you’ve determined that you’re in the presence of an official Yelp user, here are the best things you can do to ensure the review will stay up instead of being ‘filtered out.’


  • Ask them to ‘check in’ using their app.
  • Ask them to take and upload a photo with their review.


Look at the Yelp Terms and Service page for the most updated information, and always ensure you’re in line with the guidelines. 

Good Times to Ask for a Review 

People are busy and won’t necessarily leave a review just for the sake of making your day. It can be tricky, but here are some of our thoughts…

  • If they are already complimenting your product or service.
  • If they’re inside your business and you know they’re a Yelper.


If they are not a Yelp user, then feel free to send them to a different platform. Have the links ready to send or give to them. This will make things easier for them. You have to ask for a review, whether by verbally asking, texting, emailing, all the above, reminding them on social media to leave you a review, sending the mail, or having it written on your receipt. All of these are good ways to ask and remind. 


Read this if you’re struggling with ideas for testimonial questions. We’ve got you covered! 


What About Incentivizing Customers for Reviews?

Well, here’s a hot topic… It’s YOUR business and reputation on the line, right? So, what’s the right thing here? We believe there’s a difference between incentivizing and being a creative business person with an entrepreneurial mind. Also, we’re rebels at heart (We’re RebelFish), not blindly following rules, and are always open to new and creative ideas.


So, while you can’t directly offer your customers an incentive in exchange for a positive review, there are ways to work around this.


  • Good reviews will be entered into a drawing to win ___________. 


We have a client near the beach in San Diego that had a drawing to win a surfboard. Not bad! 


  • Download our app, and get __________.


Sidecar Donuts recently had a promotion to download the app using the QR code on the box for a free donut. Their donuts are around $7. Not bad! 

Business owners have incentivized customers in a couple of ways in exchange for actions.

Are there Yelp Police out there searching for businesses they can punish? No. So, it’s really up to you, and it’s all at your own risk. It’s your business. It’s your future. 

Are your communication skills up to par? Follow the link for some business communication tips. 


how to get yelp to stop filtering good reviews

What to Do With a Positive Review 


Some things will help Yelp’s algorithm decide whether or not to filter a good review. 


  • Use the icons available to let them know the review was useful.
  • Respond to the good reviews.


Regular engagement with your reviewers will send signals to Yelp and hopefully result in less frequent filtering. 


Like many other platforms, ‘domain authority’ (in this case is your Yelp business profile), regular engagement with legitimate user profiles is key. We’ll often find that a good review was filtered because there was no picture attached to the profile. This signals to Yelp that this profile is illegitimate and likely fake or ‘not real people.’ That inevitably takes away from your authority. 


And does all this work 100% of the time? No. It’s really annoying when Yelp filters good, amazing reviews, but these are some of our insights from helping thousands of business owners over the years. 


So, we’ve covered what to do when you’ve identified an official Yelper and when you get a good review, in addition to what to do if they’re not a Yelper… But what if you have a customer threatening a bad review? First of all, that’s really annoying, we hate to hear this kind of thing, but people are people, am I right? Follow that link to find out what we say about the sticky situation. 


If you’re concerned about your Yelp review status’ or freaking out about a sticky situation, schedule a call with us today, and together, we’ll get to work on your peace of mind. 

Don’t worry. Everything will be alright! 



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