How to Write Better Yelp Reviews

I'm pretty much obsessed with reading and writing reviews on Yelp. After being a Yelp Elite for three years and getting a review of the day (3/13/13!!!...not that I care about this a lot or anything)... here are some tips to make your yelp reviews better:

Proof of my Yelp expertise: Review of the Day! 3/13/13...a day that will live in infamy
1. Make it funny: Some of the most highly-rated reviews are oddball takes on reviews. Limericks, TV show references, and hyperbole will guarantee you those internet points you crave. If you are truly not funny, imagine your most dramatic friend telling you about a restaurant...and write the review in their voice. 

2. Think about what you would like to know: I try to imagine each review as a conversation with a friend. I hit the high points-"it sells $14 sandwiches that taste about as good as Subway" and then describe all the things I'd want to know when choosing a restaurant. Would you bring a date? A crowd of friends? How quick is the service? Are the portions huge? This sounds obvious, but a lot of reviews end up focusing on only one aspect of the meal (like service, food, or price).

3. Do or say something new. One of the biggest mistakes I made when first writing reviews was to more or less repeat other people's experiences. If they recommended the salad, I would try it and then say whether I liked it or not. If there's a signature dish (like a caramel budino that is amazing), definitely get it...just make sure to get a few off the beaten path menu items. It'll be good for your soul and your yelp review rating.

4. Write about new places. I have a friend who has sky high ratings and her secret is never before reviewed places. She'll review that hole in the wall airport restaurant, or that coffee shop that just opened. Since your review is all the information about that place, you'll get a huge amount of "useful" ratings.

5. Don't take it too seriously. This may seem like a total contradiction to the rest of this post, but it's important to realize you don't have to have food critic level reviews. I've had so many people ask me how to get started--the answer is to just pick a place and review. Even if your first few reviews aren't great, you will get better over time at using the site. 

Overall, I hope these tips help! If you want to know more about Yelp, here is my guide on becoming Yelp Elite.