Unleash Your Geek

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Archives January 2014

Yext 30 Day Review: Power Listings and Reviews

The Yext system allows tracking of customer reviews across most of their publishers. There are some which do not support reviews and we will have to see which publishers do not participate.
The system allows a customizable mailing so that reviews an be imported by Yext and managed by the business owner or webmaster. This makes it easy to keep clients updated on their latest reviews and allows a way to be aware of any negative reviews that could pop up. By responding in a timely manner to some reviews that allow replies this offers a show of good customer service to folks in cyber space who want to see that the business owner is on top of their client base.
Only monitoring is allowed. It does not allow replying to reviews or interaction with reviews. All managing of the actual reviews is handled by the individual publishers.
Our Question: How do you manage a review if the Publisher is being managed by YEXT? Yext overrides clients from logging in so we will have to find out how to manage replying to reviews if we technically do not have control over these sites and with this restriction.
As we gather the existing customer reviews from our test clients we will share the results of how well this system is managed and as well we will let you know which of the Publishers do not support this.
From what we can tell so far these are the sites which support reviews monitoring:
Where To?
Yellow Cauldron

The initial Scan for reviews takes 24 hours.

Ratings breakdown and from where.
In the end we want to provide a complete laundry list of things which you need to plan on managing outside of the Yext system for whatever reason or at least make recommendations as to pros and cons of all options.

  • Yext syncs with your customer’s listings to push out location content and to receive report data. This sync also enables Yext to pull in reviews on those listings
  • The Reviews tab aggregates your customer reviews. You are able to sort them by site, rating, search by keywords, and email or export the reviews
Reports Overview. This is how Yext will show you that your campaign is working or at least provide you with some informative data. We’ll be giving more detailed analysis of this function with Live website data during the period of this 30 day test.
Yext has integra(ons with publishers that enable you to view data about your Yext PowerListings from a single place
•  The reports track 5 metrics

•  Searches – the number of times a consumer has run a search and seen your listing in the search results on a Yext publisher site
•  Profile Views – the number of times a customer has seen your full listing profile on a publisher site, either by clicking on your listing from a search on the site, or from another search engine
•  Featured Message Clicks – the number of times a customer clicked on the Clickable Featured Message data only available if you have provided a URL for this field)
•  Yahoo! Name Clicks – the number of (mes a customer clicked on the location name for your listing, from the Yahoo! Search results. These clicks direct traffic to the business website, rather than opening the full listing profile
•  PowerListings Live – the total number of Yext PowerListings that were live on all publisher sites
Yext needs to receive data from all publishers and QA the data before making it available in your customer dashboards. This means you can expect there to be a 2″4 week delay on listings reports
 search engine and SEO with ReviewsMonitor Your Search Engine Reviews with Yext
Next Article in the Series: Yext Content Capture:
The Content Capture is a task by task data entry wizard located in your partner portal. With this tool, you can brand and customize a step by step walk through that will guide you through digitizing all of your business information

Yext: Beginning with the Reseller Program and Benefits for the Clients

Unleash Your Geek Yext APIThis article is a continuation in a 30 day series of evaluating the ins and outs of the Yext power listings system.

The article preceding this can be read by clicking on the following link:

<Our Comments throughout the article are represented after bullet points by using italics>

In this stage of the evaluation we’re entering into the Yext reseller training and certification.
What we would like to see is that the program teaches its resellers well and that being a Certified Reseller has value. We look forward to learning how to effectively use the system so that we can drive it to its maximum potential.

Out intention is to use the Yext system as part of a larger and more complex algorithm which intelligently drive traffic and share information through a variety of channels.

During the certification program we will keep notes on what we get taught in the training and when all is completed we’ll see what questions still need to be answered. Our goal is to make sure that this system can do everything we hope that it will do.

Stage One:

We now begin with the certification training process.

We are sent an email from Yext to login to their training module for an introduction to the Yext system. This will show all of the key essentials to using the tool such as:

Quick summary of your client list, sign up date, expiration, and a link to each customer’s dashboard

There is an optimization indicator showing how much progress has been made setting up the client’s profile. 4 Stars for this Option.

As a Partner you have the option of buying monthly subscriptions or annual subscriptions.A minimum retention rate will apply for monthly subscriptions and if the cancellation rate for those customers is high, monthly subscriptions will no longer be available to you.
(We think that is fair otherwise people would try to use this system to set up their clients’ accounts and then cancel it once the task is finished not realizing that ongoing management of the system is key to fully benefit from a good SEO/Marketing strategy)

P.O. Boxes are not eligible for Power Listings and cannot be signed up
This is simply because many search engines do not allow P.O. Boxes and require a physical business address. Using a PO Box would disqualify your company from getting registered in many places and therefore Yext becomes a moot system if it is not standardizing registrations.

There is a place to add more locations for clients (up to 4) and an easy to follow billing system that clearly states how much it will cost to add that additional location.
Yelp Restriction• 
If you set up a customer with more than 4 locations, Yelp can no longer be included in the package of publisher listings
•  This restriction is part of our agreement with Yelp. Yelp prefers to work directly with enterprise customers with 5 locations or more.
There is a link in the partner dashboard for support in the Yext Certified Partner Community. Grat support forums with good information and feedback for those who have this aptitude.
Yext has a system for keeping track of customer reviews so that if someone goes to Yelp and posts a review you can add an email so that a customer gets notified as well.
Great Idea by Yext.
On the Customer Dashboard there is a tool which allows you to export the data showing where the site has been successfully registered.
Most of these registrations are done in real time and for various reasons some other sites could take a little more time.
As part of our testing process we will be providing exact details of each site where data is being updated and we will let you know the timeline for each one to get updated properly and what prevailed in the process. For example if there is a verification needed or some other obstacle or benefit which made the process easier or more difficult.
During the training process there is a discussion of how to customize the partner area and how to generate reports for clients. Yext seems to take care of this and make it easy for most people to get information to their clients. This process will be tested once we add our own account and step through the process of reporting our submission process via email notification.
Featured Message – (more or less a promotion or coupon tool which is really great)
Many search engines and directories allow for coupons and special messages in order to promote certain products or services. They show us a tool for updating this field and then using the Power Listings to update it across 50 or so sites. I see this as being very beneficial for daily, weekly, monthly or seasonal promotions that would otherwise be very difficult to stay synchronized for all of these directories. We will determine throughout the process how well this function works as we have some very select clients with who we intend on putting this function to the test.
We will be able to provide exact numbers on how many click throughs went to the exact promo page and we’ll know whether or not it came from a Yext Power Listings function.
Within the same function there is a way to use what is called a Display URL in order to show a more attractive (SEF-Search Engine Friendly URL) URL to the people on the Internet. For example if you have a promotional URL that is long and cryptic with a lot of numbers and letters then you can create a short and easy to read URL <redirect> which will be easier to remember but won’t affect your ability to track for advertising purposes.
YouTube and Video Links
Easy to use entry for placing your YouTUbe links and these will be power listed to any place that accepts video links in their profiles and submissions.
Content Lists – These can be applied to individual locations of a business if a business has different things to promote or sell depending on location.

  • Products/Services
  • Calendars
  • Staff Bios
  • Menus – for restaurants and other locations that serve food or drinks

“Yext’s exclusive content lists transform your customers’ business listings with rich information customers need as they move from
considering a purchase online to buying offline
•  Go beyond the Where of business listings & tell potential customers the Who, What, and When with 4 types of content lists”
I Personally love this feature and we are planning on using it for 3 of our high profile clients who have product catalogs and regular promotions. There is a function for importing large product listings by using a spreadsheet import function.
For anyone who has ever used CSV or XLS to import products we all know how delimiters an make things difficult sometimes and there seems to always be issues encountered when doing imports. We’ll let you know how this goes as this is one of our biggest pet peeves with shopping carts and other purchasing systems.

File Submission Requirements
You must have one of the following:
•  A document describing the list in Microsoft Word or PDF format
•  A link to an existing list on a web site
•  A photo of the physical list

Yext does provide a spreadsheet template to make this easier. Bonus!

We’re told this system easily integrates into their social posting program which provides a good way to get out the latest product promos that link directly back to product pages. This function will be tested to the fullest extend with results posted for your benefit.
Yext also has an automated option which allows submitted a link to a website that contains the products or services and by submitting this link Yext will create this list for you. This is being added to our test to see the outcome. It would be great for us to be able to connect to one of our online catalogs if it will be that easy!
Turbo Publishers
Yext has a category of listings which are called Turbo Publishers. This means that once you verify that your business listing information is correct in the Yext Power Listings Dashboard then you can submit the info to all of your chosen websites (i.e. Yelp, Yahoo, FOurSquare, etc). One a listing is LIVE there are some which get their updates within 5 minutes every time you do mass updates. THose are called Turbo Publishers.
Turbo Publishers are great because it’s a great way to get real time promotions out there. What we will be reporting on is which ones are Turbo Publishers and how well do the listings respond to the updates and how important are these sites that are categorized as Turbo Publishers.
Yahoo, Yelp and Superpages are “Non-Turbo” and take 3-5 days to update. 
Certain Publishers accept the aforementioned “Content Lists”. Some of them don’t. There is a symbol which indicates which of these are PowerListings+ enabled.
Yelp and Bing Limitations:
Yelp can only accept changes to Name, address info, website URL, business hours, and 3 categories. Yelp does not support additonal enhanced content such as Featured Messages or Enhanced Listings.
For best results with Yelp in enhanced listings it is better to Claim the Yelp listing and manage it directly with Yelp. SOme of Yelp’s services in this respect cost extra.
Bing can update Name, address and phone numbers. Only local numbers are allowed. No tracking phone  numbers or 800 numbers.
If a Bing listing has already been claimed by someone then Yext can not control it. We will find out if you are the person who claimed it if that listing can be converted into a Yext managed account. Bing however in any respect has limitations within the Yext system at the time of this article. Maybe this will change. If you want enhanced listings with Bing it is best to claim those listings and manage them manually for the best results.
Facebook and FourSquare need login credentials to synchronize listings on their sites. This will not be an issue as most webmasters and businesses should have this login information. Once it is in hand it doesn’t have to be done again unless someone changes the passwords or login info on these accounts.
Our next Article will talk about the Customer Reviews and how they are managed.

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Yext: Pros and Cons, an In-Depth Analysis

     Over the next 30 days Unleash Your Geek, Inc. is going to give everyone the answers about Yext that have until now only been answered in forums by people offering their opinions and various types of insight. We have spent a lot of time researching forums and 100s of places on the Internet looking for analysis of the results which Yext brings and have yet to find any real hard statistics about how these registrations affect traffic patterns and backlinks.
Yext provides an interface which makes it easier to manage the registration of  directories such as Yahoo, Bing, Yelp and a long list of others necessary search engines. There is also a lot of skepticism and debate as to whether or not the value of the service will bring the desired results and whether it is worth the investment for consultants or individuals.
     FYI: Desired results is that your website gets properly registered with consistent information among about 65+ different outlets. The purpose of this is to spread out your website’s profile so that you create backlinks and increase exposure as well as search engine rankings.

Testing Process of Yext.com Services

     We will also be evaluating Acxiom (Acxiom.com) in this process which is one of the largest data aggragators in the business. An aggragator is a company that provides data to search engines such as Yelp, Bing, Yahoo as well as 100s of other important directories. UBL.org is another company which offers registration services and an interface for clients to manage their business and we will be offering insight for their service as well.

     Unleashyourgeek.com will be the first guinea pig for this experiment. We have always spent time promoting our clients’ sites and have spent little time performing full blown SEO services on our own company because we have grown on referrals alone for the last 10 years. With this new experiment we are going to show the public our ground floor numbers via Google Analytics, Alexa.com and a few others to let everyone watch how the traffic patterns evolve during the time of this experiment. We also have a partnership with Denver Internet Marketing in Colorado and they have driven a healthy amount of clients who have remained loyal for a range of 1-3 years with only 2 drop offs from our non contract services. The reason I make this reference is so you can be confident that our experiment is based on experience and not on some self proclaimed belief that we know what we’re doing. We have a really sweet track record and this Yext experiment is going to have some incredible insight that hasn’t been tried before publicly.

     At the time of this article UnleashYourGeek.com ranks 7,017,300 on Alexa and as recently as 30 days ago we were hanging out around 4,500,000 for many months. We predict that after 30 days of the Yext.com program that we will find ourselves back up in the 4Million range again if not better. Our reasons for this are proprietary and will not be disclosed in this report. Yet.

     Some concerns (but not limited to these….) that customers and service providers (seo consultants)  deal with are

  • the cost per registration
  • How much time do you wait for your submission, registration or other modification to be implemented and visible to the public
  • How much control do you have over your account and what happens when you cancel a membership

     We listen to all opinions that we can find and opinions and feedback which come unsolicited. All feedback is always helpful in determining what experiences people have had using products and services of a billion companies on the Internet. All of this feedback is important. What we are out to accomplish is pure numbers research based on real world websites that are in a ground up building stage.

     Professional and amateurs don’t always have solid and organized research on their plate because the analysis is usually on the fly or over a short period of time such as a few days or a week while these folks are test driving the services. This is not a bad thing or anything against my colleagues in the industry. It is just that there aren’t a lot of companies and individuals who are making these results public based upon their own internal research.  We are.
Rarely do we see a systems analysis of a power system like this in a real-world Enterprise environment. It is time that someone does because in order for clients to do a proper analysis of services such as Yext they really need to know how the service unveils.

Over the next 30 days our readers will find out what to expect from Yext. What to expect from us driving Yext.

Unleash Your Geek is going to step you through every step of the Yext process from obtaining a reseller account to adding new clients to that reseller account.
We will be working with real businesses and registering on sites real time. We will let everyone know what obstacles, pros and cons, we experienced and most of all we will let you know how well Yext customer service guides us through our whole process. If we need help we will submit a support request or contact our account rep. All of these things will be logged for your evaluation.

The most important part of this process is that we will show how improvements were made for our clients.
(anonymously, sorry…we have confidentiality agreements and respect the privacy of our clients)

If you LIKE the idea of this article and are interested in being notified we recommend that you Follow this page on any one of our many Internet mediums:

STAY TUNED for more information and beginning on Monday we will start posting updates as we make progress.

If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to post your questions on the Comments area of this Post.
We will be monitoring posts to help avoid SPAM so please be patient if you do not see your post right away.
Also, if you choose to register on our site in order to post we don’t use your information for anything at all except for the purpose of logging in. We respect your privacy and we’re too busy to bug our colleagues with Junk Mail.

Who are our clients and how will they be used in this experiment?

We represent over 30 clients who vary in size and professions.
Over the last 3 years we have serviced these clients and have almost 100% retention rate for the results that we have been able to bring people.
A few of our clients are being chosen to join the experiment at our expense (Annual Membership Fee to Yext). The anonymous data will show traffic patterns as well as how the clients benefited from the new system.

Our clients:

  • Event Planning Services
  • Specialty Auto Mechanics
  • Dental Groups
  • Emergency Care Clinics
  • Pest Control
  • Industrial Machining
  • Las Vegas Award Winning Sports Handicappers
  • Industrial Rental and Supply Companies
  • Window Replacement 
  • Sports Collectibles
  • Central American Landscape and Irrigation Architects
  • Tourist companies and travel adventure services
  • Massage Therapy
  • Musical Instruments 
  • Real Estate Agencies
  • Home Improvement, Kitchen and Bath Design
  • Heating and Air Conditioning
  • Bartending Schools
  • Candy and Confectionery, Chocolates
  • Paint Supply Company
  • Industrial and Residential Painting Company
  • Automotive Equipment Supply Company
  • Mortgage and Lending Institutions
  • Car Wash Franchiser