Does Yodle Really Work?

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Does Yodle work?Yodle is a service for small business owners that promises to be able to get their message out to more and more potential customers, thus increasing business and profits. But how well does it actually work, and is it worth the monthly expenditure?

Overview
It only makes sense to try to drive more traffic to your practice or business, and most business owners can see the value of ranking in the search engines, and understand that this is how a large majority of people find local businesses these days.

The Claim
Yodle claims that they can build up your presence on the web so that more people can find you, and those that do find you are more likely to do business with you. They say that they can utilize the search engines so that you start to funnel that traffic to your business’ website, or to have them give you a call.

They also say that you’ll be able to see concrete proof that you’re getting results because they provide analytics, and you won’t have to wait around for a long time to tell that it’s working.

The Hype
There are several companies out there that offer similar claims, and small business owners are bombarded daily with people that are telling them that they can increase their number of customers and grow their business. Guaranteeing that you’ll be on Google’s first page is one that is often thrown around because it seems like the Holy Grail, and it’s hard to deny that this is where you want to be, rather than on page two. But you don’t want to do it in a way that provides short-term results, but gets you penalized in the future.

The Cost
Prices vary depending on what your goals are with Yodle, and what your budget is. There are packages that can go for $700 or more, but a specific pricing structure is not provided. Since it isn’t transparent customers are left sharing quotes they’ve gotten. Apparently they try to first mention price points in the thousands of dollars, but will then undercut their own prices and offer services at about the $400 to $500 per month range.

Why don’t they simply list their monthly service fees and allow you to buy directly online? Their sales methods seem very outdated, making you order over the phone from what many people are labeling as aggressive sales tactics akin to buying a used car. They should have packages listed, showing all that’s included, with prices shown so that you can make an informed decision and so you know what you’re getting and what it’s costing you.

The Commitment
This is presented as a pretty hands-off approach to getting your business going, and attracting more customers. You always have to be leery when it comes to letting someone else handle an important aspect of your business. It might all seem Greek to you at first, but learning enough about how this works is a good use of your time. That way you will be less likely to get taken advantage of, and you’ll know that you’re getting good value for your money from reputable companies.

Evaluation
The overall consensus is that the Yodle service provides little results for an exaggerated cost. Some of the complaints given are rather hard to look past, and would make it hard to do business with them. There are of course some testimonials, but it would be easy enough for them to make a case study out of a few businesses in order to build credibility.

With services like these it’s relatively easy to figure out if they are worth the price or not. Basically if it’s bringing in enough business and therefore profits to justify the cost, it’s worth keeping. But if after a few months you’re noticing that it’s just another monthly expense, then it’s time to consider dropping it.

Final Yodle Review

Yodle is getting the Thumbs Down rating. There’s simply too much working against them, and many critics have made solid arguments for why you wouldn’t want to go with them. Perhaps the most convincing reason is that if you stop paying for their service you won’t continue to benefit from any of the results you do get. If you go with an SEO service that keeps everything on your domain, and with your phone number. You don’t want them to take over your business and make a website that you don’t own, or a use a phone number that isn’t yours. If you stop paying, it all goes away.

Our Recommendation
You may be tempted to go with a service like this because you’re tired of seeing your competition outrank you in the search results. You probably think they’re getting all of the search traffic and increasing their business, while you are missing out. While this can cause strong emotions to stir, you have to be careful that you don’t go with the first company that comes along promising you better results.

What do you think? Does Yodle work or not?

31 Customer Reviews on “Does Yodle Really Work?

  1. I’m the owner of a digital marketing company in Edmonton and one of my clients was using their services before switching over. They were essentially renting a Yodle website which was the first problem. Your website is core to your online marketing strategy so it’s definitely something you want to own and control. The website itself didn’t adhere to best practices for optimization and the content didn’t do a great job of effectively selling or explaining the businesses services. They also insisted on using their own phone number on the website as well as the Google My Business listing. The issue is that they didn’t update the other key local listings leaving inconsistent NAP ( name, address, phone # ) information across the internet which is actually detrimental for local rankings. This is the only experience I’ve had with this company so I can’t speak to all of their work but the quality on this particular account was disappointing.

    The price point might seem attractive but you shouldn’t be distracted by their first-page rankings guarantee. First page for which keywords? Do you know which keywords are actually driving conversions for your business? You obviously need to be visible but success isn’t always driven by ranking well for any single keyword. Often lower volume long-tail keywords are overlooked even though they generate revenue. A good seo professional takes the time to understand search intent and makes sure your website delivers an optimal experience for potential customers. I found that Yodle did a poor job of considering the shopper’s needs in order to maximize conversions. It was also disconcerting that they refuse to share any of their analytics when you cancel with them. Being transparent about your data should never be an issue and I would be wary of any company that doesn’t operate openly.

    FYI – the client was successfully able to argue their way out of Yodle’s $199 domain transfer fee because it wasn’t explained very well.

    To address a couple of the comments in this thread about standardized pricing – I understand that seems easier but it’s very difficult when each business has it’s own unique challenges and competitive environments. A business in a small town likely doesn’t need the same effort as a business in a competitive urban market. There’s a lot of variables to consider and I personally like to tailor a custom strategy for each new client.

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