Yelp's top 5 free tools for dentists

April 23, 2013
If there’s one thing dentists need to know about Yelp, it’s that potential patients visit our site when they’re ready to make an appointment.

By Morgan Remmers
April 23, 2013

If there’s one thing dentists need to know about Yelp, it’s that potential patients visit our site when they’re ready to make an appointment. They need work done and are looking for the best provider around. Make Yelp an even better referral source for your practice by optimizing your listing with these free tools, all of which are available in your Yelp Business Account. Below are some tips on the best ways to utilize these free tools:

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  1. Include your biography and specialties: Providing a brief biography about where you went to dental school and the dental associations you’re affiliated with provides potential patients with helpful information about your knowledge and experience in the field. Also be sure to include what you specialize in (i.e. general dentistry, cosmetic dentistry, oral surgery, or all of the above). The more information a consumer has at their fingertips about the kind of practice you run, the better they can determine if you’re the right fit for their needs. You can add up to 1,000 characters of information respectively in both the ‘Meet the Owner’ and ‘Specialties’ sections of your listing, located in the Business Information tab of your Business Account.
  2. Add photos: Adding photos is highly recommended. In fact, people searching Yelp stay on a business page with photos two and a half times longer than one without. Not sure what to add? Headshots, staff photos, patient rooms and exterior photos of your practice work well. Your photos don’t need to be professionally done, they just need to provide a good visual representation of your practice.
  3. Calculate the estimated revenue coming from Yelp: In March 2013, we launched the “Revenue Estimate” tool which multiplies a business’ customer leads coming from Yelp each month by the business’ average revenue per customer lead. Also included is the average spend per customer for each business category, based on a recently released BCG study. Upon logging in to your Business Account, you’ll land on your business’ Activity page, where you can access the revenue estimate tool located in the right-most tab.
  4. Create a check-in offer: Consumers can search exclusively for businesses with a check-in offer on the mobile Yelp app, and with more than 45% of Yelp searches happening through mobile devices (as of Q4 2012), optimizing your listing for mobile search is imperative. Make sure you’re a contender in these tailored search results by creating a check-in offer in your Business Account. The check-in offer displays prominently at the top of your Yelp listing. This is a great way to not only gain additional exposure in customized searches, but also to entice Yelp users to choose your practice by offering something like a complimentary whitening kit with initial cleaning.
  5. Utilize the private and public messaging tools to connect with your patients: On Yelp, you have two messaging tools available to connect with consumers that have written reviews about your practice: you can send a private message or post a public comment. Sending a private message is much like sending someone a personal email and is visible only to the reviewer. This tool is best used to thank patients for a positive review or as a good first step to get more information from a patient about a less-than-positive experience.

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You can also post a public comment which, when used properly, is your greatest PR tool. While you still want to address the reviewer directly, a public comment posts right underneath the review you’re responding to for all consumers to see. This tool is most effective when you respond diplomatically, thank the reviewer for their feedback and state your policy or clarify any inaccuracies in the consumer’s review.

Once you’ve added your bio, photos, check-in offer and the services your practice specializes in, you’ll only need to log-in to respond to the new reviews you receive and view the customer leads and estimated revenue Yelp is generating for your practice.


Morgan Remmers is the Manager of Local Business Outreach at Yelp. Through informational sessions across the country, Morgan addresses how local business owners can best approach the ever-growing world of online reviews. Specifically, Morgan consults with local business owners interested in gaining a better understanding of Yelp and utilizing the free tools available in Yelp’s Business Owners Account. She also hosts a series of webinars on subjects relevant to business owners and regularly contributes content to Yelp's "Blog for Business Owners." Morgan works with Yelp's Small Business Advisory Council and acts as a liaison between the small business community and the different divisions within Yelp.