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uberall & Yelp Partner to Clean Up Listings in Europe & U.S.

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In March at the 2017 LSA Conference, uberall and Yelp announced a new partnership that will help uberall improve its listings management solution. According to the release on uberall’s website, here are the features that uberall clients now have access to:

  • Claiming of Yelp listings is supported.
  • Access to Yelp reviews: Get location reviews directly from Yelp in the Engage tool. This will add serious firepower to your reputation management ability.
  • Increased management of your listings: Business owners can manage their Yelp listings through the Location Marketing Cloud in real-time, with complete data consistency.

uberall launched in 2013 focusing primarily on offering presence management tools for the European market. Since then the company has expanded and added a new office in San Francisco in 2016. The Yelp partnership will help the company enter the U.S. market in a meaningful way.

To learn more about the partnership, we caught up with uberall Co-Founder and Managing Director Florian Huebner. What follows are Florian’s responses to some questions about the partnership:

What does the Yelp and uberall partnership mean for multi-location brands in Europe? What about brands in the U.S.?

We’re obviously very pleased about the partnership, securing as it does the future of multi-location brands in both Europe and the US. It also enables uberall to continue its successful expansion into the US, and allows Yelp to explore the European markets with greater ease.

In terms of multi-location brands in both regions, we see the partnership as strengthening the growing trend of online-to-offline and business awareness of digital location marketing in general. This is a pretty major challenge, considering the ways retail is changing. We’ve heard a lot of talk lately of American retail in particular, reaching a tipping point, where e-commerce will take over the majority of all sales.

We at uberall believe in making business the easiest and most rewarding it can be, for both businesses and consumers. That’s why we believe the tipping-point argument is false. People who make these claims tend to ignore two crucial factors when it comes to brands in multi-location stores:

  1. Consumers still want the real-world experience
  2. Physical locations are still vital, as being recognized by the likes of Amazon, opening their own store.

People are still people, and they still want to enjoy the experience of shopping – not just endless scrolling through pages for products.

How do you see the uberall and Yelp partnership evolving over time?

Adding a major global player to uberall’s already extensive Listings Network, demonstrates the scale of our company’s ambition when it comes to helping businesses grow through online listings and digital location marketing. We already partner with Yelp on two fronts: for enterprises, and for resellers. This means we already offer our customers the opportunity to use Yelp as a network for their listings, or indeed for third-parties to offer Yelp as a part of the product package uberall provides.

We see our partnership developing to work closely together to bring even better quality and more value for our clients, and for our resellers. Furthermore, as the partnership represents a mutual benefit for expansion into geographic regions, we hope the partnership provides new opportunities for both companies to capitalize on new opportunities in these markets.

In a perfect world, all brands would have up-to-date and accurate location data on all relevant platforms (Google, Yelp, Facebook, etc.). Is this possible?

Yes! The ideal world theory is the one where all brands and businesses are perfectly competitive – that is, where they are not constrained by needless inefficiencies – and believe us, unstructured data and inaccurate location data are needless.

Imagining a scenario where all businesses are free to compete with one another based on their merit and ability to interact with their customers is actually one that’s pretty far from the case at the moment. Consumer behaviour is becoming more and more regimented, in that consumers are less likely to make purchases from stores ‘on a whim’.

Instead, they research the shopping route and products and decide beforehand where to buy their chosen products – normally this is near them. Once in their chosen store, they may make impulse purchases, but getting to that store is the important thing – and here, many brands are already putting themselves at a disadvantage by not structuring their data properly.

As such, the ideal world would involve each business and service getting the fairest representation at the customer’s research stage – a situation we’d love to see!

As brands overcome these listing management challenges, what do you think will be the next major marketing hurdle for multi-location brands?

There are many hurdles for multi-location brands, of which structured data is only one. Of course, keeping customers in different regions is another – but I think competitive action with e-commerce is perhaps the biggest challenge.

Brands and businesses really have a chance to define the conversation around what we want shopping and retail to be, but they will not be able to do that by standing on the sidelines. They will need to embrace the idea of a changing tech and retail environment, which means being willing to embrace a little uncertainty in the way people interact with their brands.

Some multi-location brands are already doing this, and turning their brands into linchpins for a certain kind of lifestyle. For example, everyone knows Starbucks offers customer free WiFi in its locations, and thereby securing a certain type of traffic – those people wanting to work away from home, for example. But what about going further, and delivering unique experiences for customers – Adidas, for example, has opened a pop-up store in Berlin where scanners examine a shopper before delivering a custom-crafted sweater — in four hours.

Brands need to find out what they can offer that’s more than the sum of their products.

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