Sunday, January 25, 2015

Yelp on EveryBlock

Yelp is the leading website for local knowledge. EveryBlock is a leading website for neighborhood discussions.

I first learned about EveryBlock from a news article. My thought was, “Yeah, that’s what I have been looking for.” I could spread good words about how Houston is a great place to live. We live in a lively city with 4 million people and there is much more to offer. So, I signed up and I have been enjoying the benefits since.

EveryBlock is an interactive local news and information site that makes it easy to stay connected with what’s happening in a user’s neighborhood. It is equal parts neighborhood content aggregator, curator, and social platform. Users receive personalized information from a combination of sources - the Web, civic data, and user generated questions and comments - at the neighborhood or even block level.

Users can read business reviews from different neighborhoods.
As a Yelper, I think it's extremely important to share your experience on a business by writing reviews. Above example is my post on Village Liquor in Spring Branch. Just by selecting different neighborhoods, I could see the presences from my Yelp friends. I also post announcements around me, just like Yelp Talks. There are much more to explain. You can certainly sign up at http://houston.everyblock.com/

Related news from the Mayor's Office - http://www.examiner.com/article/comcast-launches-new-everyblock-app-for-hyper-local-information

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Elites & Dukedoms

Someone asked me if dukedoms and barons can cash in to become Elites. Uh, no. They are two different things. 
I missed these popup on the app. Since late 2014, the dukedom crowns are no longer customized.

Dukedom badges are just for fun. Yelpers use apps to earn badges. But you'll see some Elites don't have any badges. Because their contributions came from reviews. 

So, the bottom line is... reviews sell ads. Dukedoms don't generate any revenue for Yelp.

For those of you who are interested to become an Elite member, here is a good article to read and understand how to become Elite Yelper. http://www.businessinsider.com/how-to-become-yelp-elite-2014-8

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Yelp Challenge 2014

Orange is my trademark
In 2014, I spent exorbitant amount of time on Yelp. The challenge was to write 100 reviews, but I was beyond that point by Summer. I had total of 157 reviews (started at #96 and ended at #253).

I was not just writing reviews, I was focused on biz pages accuracy and provided value by adding/updating their pages. Because Google, Yahoo Local and Mapquest used Yelp biz listing and reviews on their result pages.

I like the fluency on Yelp. Unlike Google Local and Google Marker, I can't simply send them updates with my local expertise ability to convince them of changes. I couldn't even delete a photo from Foursquare. I was very unhappy with their inconsistency on web and app platforms. I deleted the app from my phone.

Here is a list of biz pages I added and Yelper followed in 2014:
Legend: # NR = Not reviewed | ^ Hot = Highly appraised

Hot
NR
Name
Locality
Notes
^

Sugar Land
updated from former biz

#
Galleria
Started from Scratch
^
#
Honolulu
Started from Scratch

#
Spring Branch
Started from Scratch
^

Westwood
updated from former biz


Westwood
watched it went through remodeling twice


Missouri City
Started from Scratch; HQ asked me to review

#
Westwood
Started from Scratch


San Antonio
GPS/photos/Vitals added


Medical Center
GPS/photos/Vitals added

#
Westwood
Started from Scratch

#
Westwood
Started from Scratch
^

NW Crossing
Started from Scratch
^
#
Middle of nowhere
GPS/photos/Vitals added

#
Westwood
Started from Scratch
^

Chinatown
watched it from ground up

#
NW Crossing
Started from Scratch


Chinatown
Started from Scratch
^
#
NW Crossing
watched it from ground up

#
Westwood
Started from Scratch
^

NW Crossing
Started from Scratch

#
Sugar Land
Started from Scratch

#
Chinatown
Started from Scratch


Westheimer
Started from Scratch


Sugar Land
Started from Scratch


Chinatown
GPS correction
^

Sharpstown
Watched rise and fall


Chinatown
Started from Scratch


Chinatown
Started from Scratch


Pearland
Started from Scratch


Westwood
updated from former biz


Sharpstown
Started from Scratch


Westwood
Started from Scratch

#
Chinatown
updated from former biz
 ^

Chinatown
updated from former biz


Chinatown
Started from Scratch


NW Crossing
GPS/photos/Vitals added

#
Sugar Land
Started from Scratch


NW Crossing
watched it from ground up
^
#
Chinatown
Started from Scratch
^

Westwood
watched it from ground up
^

NW Crossing
Started from Scratch


Westwood
updated from former biz

#
Willowbrook
Started from Scratch


Carverdale
Started from Scratch

#
Sugar Land
Started from Scratch

#
Downtown
Started from Scratch
^
#
San Antonio
Started from Scratch


Carverdale
Started from Scratch


Westwood
Started from Scratch

#
Sugar Land
Started from Scratch


Carverdale
Started from Scratch


Westwood
Started from Scratch


NW Crossing
Started from Scratch
^
#
Chinatown
updated from former biz

#
Westwood
Started from Scratch

#
Westwood
Started from Scratch

#
Westwood
Started from Scratch

#
Chinatown
Started from Scratch


Chinatown
Started from Scratch


NW Crossing
Started from Scratch
^
#
Sharpstown
Started from Scratch; then, the owner claimed the biz page
^
#
Bellaire
Started from Scratch


Westchase
updated from former biz


NW Crossing
Updated from former biz