Yelp to stop auto-creating fundraisers after outrage from business owners

My opinion on Yelp Practices & the GoFundMe Fiasco

I’d like to share my opinion on this Yelp story because I think it really speaks volumes to what’s happening in the review industry. So remember, this is an opinion, but I think it’s an opinion that is shared by thousands of businesses all over the country.

Yelp sets up a partnership with GoFundMe to add donation button to businesses without permission

Yelp decided to set up a partnership with GoFundMe for small businesses in a failed attempt at assisting businesses with the coronavirus epidemic. Yelp made the decision to allow people to support their favorite local businesses by donating to the GoFundMe fundraiser directly on the yelp pages of “eligible businesses”.

According to The Verge: “On Tuesday, Yelp announced a partnership with GoFundMe to provide a fast and easy way for people to support their favorite local businesses by donating to a GoFundMe fundraiser directly on the Yelp pages of eligible businesses. In an effort to get businesses help quickly and easily, a GoFundMe fundraiser was automatically added to the Yelp pages of an initial group of eligible businesses, with information provided on how to claim it or opt out should a business choose to do so,” a spokesperson said in a statement.

Later, a Yelp spokesman says there is a pause to the automatic roll-out of GoFundMe

You bet you pause a program that is launched without permission, no matter the intention. Businesses sound off and demand the removal of the GoFundMe donations on their profiles.

“However, it has come to our attention that some businesses did not receive a notification with opt-out instructions, and some would have preferred to actively opt-in to the program,” the statement goes on to say. “As such, we have paused the automatic roll out of this feature, and are working with GoFundMe to provide a seamless way for businesses to opt into the program moving forward, as we have received a great deal of interest and support for the program from both consumers and businesses alike.”

According to The Verge

Businesses on Yelp demand removal of GoFundMe

You’ll see some comments from business owners like me below that are outraged by the latest happenings at Yelp. It astounds me that companies are still trusting their businesses to corporations that don’t always consider the ramifications of corporate decisions on small businesses. As a Brick & Mortar Business owner, nobody makes decisions on the business but me, especially when it comes to reaching out to the general public and my customers. I am the owner, the manager, the janitor, the bookkeeper, so I should be the one to decide what and how I communicate with MY customer base.

Now is the time to make the switch to Rating Bee

This should motivate businesses all over the country to begin making the switch to Rating Bee. We focus on small businesses getting better reviews and happier customers. Rating Bee would never misrepresent your company in this way. Thankfully because of the outrage of many businesses reaching out to Yelp, this Donation program has now ceased, but with arduous steps for businesses affected. I’m trying to be gentle here… but I have to admit it infuriates me for small businesses and many are making the change to Rating Bee, you should too.

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