JRS

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Hi there - I have a client - an Indian Restaurant - who is shutting down for a few weeks and coming back to market with an Indian Restaurant but a totally different concept and take on Indian food, a completely remodeled location - looks nothing like the old one - and a brand new name and brand.

They will also have a new website with a new url reflecting their new name.

Question: their 'legacy' or old GMB listing, Yelp listing, and other listings have mediocre reviews. Very mediocre. 3 stars on Yelp, 3.5 on Google. But 200-350 reviews a piece. Should I keep those listings and change the info and name, OR should I start off with completely new and fresh, 0 reviewed listings?

I see advantages to both and have seen a variety of opinions on this online. My instinct tells me to start from fresh - who wants to visit a new concept and restaurant and food and chef with legacy reviews that aren't great from the previous concept?

Follow up question: is there a best practice involved with shutting down old Yelp and Google listings and creating brand new one's with the same phone number and address but different business name? Thank you
 

Phil Rozek

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@JRS, it's an edge case, but in this case I'd start fresh.

As you say, the old reviews won't be very applicable to the new restaurant. It's a minor shame you wouldn't benefit from the volume of reviews of the old place, but it's relatively easy for restaurants to rack them up, so you could get back there in not too long. Also, you don't want people to read them and think, "Huh?" (If the average ratings were higher I'd say it's a tougher call, but they're not, so it's not.)

Here's the rough sequence of steps I'd suggest:

1. Roll out the new site.

2. Create the new GMB page, Yelp page, and other listings.

3. Stick onto the old site a super-prominent message to the effect of, "Here's the new restaurant."

4. Update the listings on the various directories / citation sources where the old restaurant doesn't have reviews.

5. Close or remove the phone number from the listings where the old restaurant has reviews.

6. Mark the old GMB page as "permanently closed." Consider also contacting GMB support to see if they'll redirect the old GMB page to the new one.

7. Step on the gas on reviews.
 

JRS

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@JRS, it's an edge case, but in this case I'd start fresh.

As you say, the old reviews won't be very applicable to the new restaurant. It's a minor shame you wouldn't benefit from the volume of reviews of the old place, but it's relatively easy for restaurants to rack them up, so you could get back there in not too long. Also, you don't want people to read them and think, "Huh?" (If the average ratings were higher I'd say it's a tougher call, but they're not, so it's not.)

Here's the rough sequence of steps I'd suggest:

1. Roll out the new site.

2. Create the new GMB page, Yelp page, and other listings.

3. Stick onto the old site a super-prominent message to the effect of, "Here's the new restaurant."

4. Update the listings on the various directories / citation sources where the old restaurant doesn't have reviews.

5. Close or remove the phone number from the listings where the old restaurant has reviews.

6. Mark the old GMB page as "permanently closed." Consider also contacting GMB support to see if they'll redirect the old GMB page to the new one.

7. Step on the gas on reviews.
Thanks Phil. Much appreciated. I like step #3 as I hadn't thought of that take - I was going to just shutter that url. Great idea. Will definitely step on the gas w/ reviews. Thanks
 

Tony Wang

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You may also want to suggest to the owner that he figure out why he had such mediocre reviews with the old business. If he isn't committed to fixing things, he might just be putting lipstick on his pig :)
 

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