Sep 032012

There have been a lot of opinions expressed on the importance of Yext for local SEO (you can read Mike Blumenthal’s and David Mihm’s, for instance). However, I haven’t seen anyone tackling the more fundamental problems behind the platform. I will try to explain some of them in more detail. In this article, I will try to explain them in more details. But first, I should make a clear disclaimer - I do offer manual citation building service, which might be viewed as a “competing” service to the Yext’s core one (although I would argue on this matter, but that’s not the point). Nevertheless, everything I write is from as a neutral point of view as possible.

What does Yext offer?

Yext offers a service called “Power Listings”, which syndicates business information across a network of 40 local search platforms. These platforms include both Internet yellow pages types of sites, such as Yahoo Local, Superpages, Whitepages,, and social network and review types of sites, such as Yelp, Citysearch, Foursquare, and others. The service includes a neat dashboard, which monitors traffic to each of the listings, as well as reviews on them. However, the biggest advantage of Yext has always been the speed with which the information is being spread and/or rectified across the network.

What are the positives?

As I mentioned above, the speed with which the information is being synced is unique. For most of the sites it goes live practically instantly, and for almost all of the others it gets updated in a few hours. Additionally, the information that could be syndicated includes special offers, photos, and videos, and some of these elements are not available on a number of the local search sites, even for paying customers, i.e. the only way to get them to appear on one’s listing is via Yext. The statistics that the platform provides could also be valuable, especially when considering the service’s value.

What are the negatives?

The positives pretty much end with what I described above. Here is a list of some of the most significant negatives:

1) Service’s updates - Yext’s service is in an ever-going improvement, which by itself is great. New sites are regularly being added to the network. But what happens if you have purchased a package when the network consisted of only 12-13 platforms? As far as I understand, you are going to stay only with these for at least until your one year’s subscription ends. I understand that from Yext’s point of view that makes sense - they don’t have to pay a bulk sum of money to the newly added to the network sites, because of some old customers that would anyway not pay anymore (at least for a year) after their initial payment. However, it totally doesn’t make sense from the point of view of these customers. And if I were them, I was going to be unhappy with the service, too.

2) The network - while Yext’s network includes a number of the most important business directories, it also misses a few important ones. These include Yellowpages, Insiderpages, Kudzu, Manta, to name a few. Furthermore, the network’s size is very small compared to the overall number of local business directories out there. Whitespark‘s Local Citation Finder finds 245 citation sources per keyphrase on average. Of course, some of these are unusable, or not business directories, but even if 50% of them are, this would mean that in any given niche there are at least 100-120 business directories, where a business could get a listing from. Yext’s network covers 40, but this number is rather questionable. A couple of examples: and which are advertised as platforms part of the service, actually get data directly from Whitepages and Superpages, respectfully, and there is no way for a business to get a listing on any of them directly. Furthermore, the service won’t work in the cases when one has an enhanced listing for their business on some of the most important websites: Yahoo, Yelp, Superpages, Citysearch,, Merchantcircle, Ziplocal, Tupalo.

3) NAP consistency - the main advantage of the service is that it rectifies the business information across Yext’s network, thus helping up the local search rankings (I have previously discussed the value of citations for local SEO). I have been “promoting” the Local Search Scorecard, an instant scanning service Yext offers for free, as a useful local SEO tool, too. But if we look deeper, we could see that there are fundamental problems with the Power Listings service and its helpfulness in terms of keeping one’s business NAP consistent. How the service works is:

- It scans all the network’s websites for the specified business information (name, address, phone number).

- It determines the best matching listings (if any) on each website and highlights them.

- It then syncs the data input via the dashboard on all these websites, updating the listings that previously have been determined as best matching, and “filling in” with new listings where it was unable to find matching ones.

The three main problems here - first, it is possible that Yext’s scanning will not find the correct listing (happens often when the same business has two offices in the same city, or when a business has been using the same phone number for more than one of their locations); second, it is possible that Yext’s scanning will not find any listing, although there is one (happens if NAP is very inconsistent); third, it is possible that there are duplicates, and as Yext finds only one listing per website, these won’t be taken care of (happens almost in every single case). What this all means is that the chances for Yext to not clear up your NAP completely, or to actually screw your other location’s NAP, are pretty high. I haven’t made a large scale research on this matter, but according to my observations there are at least a few wrong or correct duplicates for a business in at least 80% of the cases. The sites with most duplicate listings (not just from Yext’s network, but overall) are Merchant Circle, Citysquares, EZLocal, MojoPages, ZipLocal, which are in fact all part of the network. Additionally, at least in one of every 5 or 6 searches via the Local Search Scorecard, Yext finds at least one listing which is either for another business, or for another location of the same business. Last but not least, in almost every search, Yext’s tool doesn’t find at least one listing on one website, where it actually exists.

4) The overall price - the rate is $500 per year. It is advertised as “per month” rate, but it is billed per year. Personally, I believe for what Yext offers the price is rather steep. Here is a sum up of why I think so:

- Yext basically offers a service, which syndicates business data across 40 platforms.

- 3 platforms actually are part of a network of other platforms, and by themselves do not carry almost any value.

- 8 platforms are not compatible with Yext when the business is already advertising on them.

- Yext doesn’t remove duplicates.

- Yext sometimes syndicates data where there is an already existing listing for a business, thus creating a duplicate.

- Yext sometimes updates a wrong listing, thus potentially screwing up the business data for another location.

- Here is one I haven’t mentioned yet: the listings coming from Yext are not owner-verified (in almost all cases), and as the incoming data is standardized, sometimes the listings produced by Yext are not fully completed (here is why it is important for the listings to be as complete as possible).


I do not say Yext is bad. On the contrary, it has many positives, as I pointed out above. It could be very useful and time-saving for businesses with thousands of locations, where manual citations work is simply impossible. It could also be useful for businesses that have higher profit per sale (real estate agencies, insurance agencies, law firms, car dealers) that have opened a new location and want a fast local search boost. However, I don’t think it’s really useful in the cases when:

- You are a small business, with not too high profit per sale, or not too large marketing budget;

- You are a business of any size that has already taken care of their online presence (i.e. your business data is relatively consistent across the board);

- You are a business of any size with significant business data inconsistency problems (very often the case with most of the professional and health related businesses);

- You want a local SEO push, and you are looking for ways to stand above the competition (in these cases, normally the competitor(s) will already have listings on most of the websites included in Yext’s network, so if your only citation building tactic is paying for Power Listings, then this might very well not be the right solution for you).

Time for discussion - have you used Yext? What was your case and has Yext’s service helped?


Howard Lerman, CEO of Yext, contacted me with his POV, and as I always appreciate companies caring about their reputation + sharing as many views as possible, I post his thoughts below:

I usually enjoy reading your posts and comments as you tend to get the detailed facts actually right.

Unfortunately, your article post Yext today does not meet the Zhekov high standard I have come to expect from you!

Specifically, in your “What are the negatives / 3) NAP Consistency” section, you’ve missed a major, key step in the Yext process. We don’t use the same matches from our scan as the official match to sync with. Rather, upon purchasing our product, we first suggest matches and unless it is an exact match, a business quickly walks through a process for each listing where they have the chance to confirm a match OR re-search on the partners index until they find the listing they’d like to match to. If the listings not there, we add it.

The ability to pick which listing on each site you’d like to sync with Yext is a very powerful feature – no other solution has anything even close to this capability.

I think the entire nature of your article (including the headline) is unfair without this criticism. Your remaining criticisms are that we don’t have enough sites and that we’re too expensive. We’re always adding more sites and stay tuned in that regard. That leaves expense. How much does an average LocalSEO charge per hour? How much junk is there in the market that costs hundreds or thousands of dollars? For a business investing in internet advertising, Yext is very reasonably priced.

*Note: Our Citation Building Guide features more information, tips, and tactics on how to do local citation building.

  61 Responses to “Why Yext Might Not Be the Best Fit for Your Business”

Comments (61)
  1. I have managed Yext and it has many of the limitations you point out but pricing depends on what services you select. For example one client has a basic package that runs about $200 per month which is pretty expensive based on the limitations. You could get more bang for your buck using different services that are more inclusive but it certainly is a nice starting point.

    • You appear to be one of the few “balanced” opinions about Yext (although your entry is 3 years old).

      Could I find out from you if you are using YEXT now in 2015?…and , most importantly, what other services (or service types that get ones Firm to show up in multiple platforms, etc.

      I really would appreciate hearing from you. Thanks

    • I used text for 3 years paying the 500.00 to 600.00 cost and then it dawned on me if they fix all your listing and nothing has changed , why do you have to keep paying them to keep your existing information correct. So when it was time to renew i didn’t and they went and changed it all back incorrect. NOT RIGHT !!! There a scam and it is very wrong of them to charge to maintain.And when you go into these sites to NAP, they have it where you can’t correct them yourself.

  2. Nyagoslav:

    I couldn’t agree with you more on this topic. When I read all the rave reviews for Yext I was all excited about it until I took a closer look. I just think it’s way overpriced and not applicable for probably 80% of the businesses out there. Whitespark offers manual citations submissions now at $3 per directory. For $500 (the price Yext charges), you could have 166 citations!

    Travis Van Slooten

    • Travis,

      Indeed the price is incomparable to any of the manual citation building services available (including the one I offer). However, I believe Yext’s service could be made worth the money with the addition/amendment of some of the things I mentioned in my post. Right now, as you point out, it doesn’t make much sense for a large part of the businesses to use it.

  3. Great analysis, Nyagoslav! IMO Yext has the most appeal to in-house marketers and agencies who don’t have a deep understanding of Local Search and are taking a stab at doing something for their business or for their clients that would benefit from ranking better in the Google Local Pack. It’s a quick solution that doesn’t take any expertise. Most of them can also make a buck by setting up some kind of reseller relationship with Yext. It’s certainly better than doing nothing, but those who want/need to rank in the Local Packs can do much better by engaging a Local SEO specialist to assist them in that quest.

    • I agree with you, Mary. And this is the main purpose of the article. Yext is very appealing to some particular segments, and it totally makes sense in some cases, but in others, it is just plain waste of money.

  4. The response from Howard Lerman, CEO of Yext, was disappointing to me. I felt he came across as extremely defensive and whining rather than someone who could take some suggestions and constructive feedback to improve their service.

    • It is his right to respond when the article is related to the company he leads. I would not like to publicly comment his response, though, but I definitely appreciate your opinion, Ryan.

    • You are correct. Yext and yelp one in the same. He was defensive, and any company associated with yelp I would want NOTHING to do with. Nyagoslav, you are very professional, and I appreciate your comments. You have the right to say what you feel, and what you believe is correct.


  5. Nice article and kudo’s for giving yext’s CEO an opportunity to comment. As usual deep analysis.

    So many local smb’s and so many different scenario’s and situations allow for a lot of different alternatives.

    But frankly, I agree with Mary Bowling’s analysis. It is a quick response. My experience is that most of these quick systemic responses don’t provide the expertise, or hands on time invested to generate better results.

    From an SMB perspective getting enough expertise or time invested to push those rankings up can make enormous positive differences in more calls, more leads, more everything.

    But it is there…and it is an appropriate alternative that gets a business in the “game”.

    • Thanks for the comment, Dave. As I mentioned in the article, the tool is simply not suitable for most SMBs. I would assume the largest part of their profits are anyway coming from large national companies, so I don’t think this is anything new to them, either.

      One thing I dislike in their strategy, however, is that their sales approach is quite aggressive and very often misleading. But well, isn’t this the approach of every large company that is in infinite profits growth cycle? :)

  6. I am very interested in a service or tool to find and/or ‘correct’ duplicates across multiple IYP sites / networks.

    As an SEO Account Manager for an Internet marketing company, I have been finding that there are 4 or 5 or even 6+ duplicate listings for some of our clients on some of the IYP sites mentioned in this article.

    Is there a recommended method to search/destroy duplicates on these sites? I have mostly been manually contacting tech support for various websites to have the duplicate listings merged or deleted.

    Some of the sites have responded back to me and their pages either now 301 redirect to the proper listing’s URL or they now 404. On some IYP sites, the ‘fixed’ duplicate pages remain in existence, but say something to the effect of ‘business closed’ (or such).

    In the last case I was assured that those particular pages would eventually be dropped from search engine indexes and they would not return a result on the IYP’s internal searches, though the pages still technically exist if you have it book marked.

    Side note: Do they actually mark the page as noindex/nofollow? I’d think 404 or 301 would work better than keeping the old page live with a ‘close’ or ‘XXX-XXX-XXXX’ status (as one major aggregator did for one of our listings.)

    Russ Offord

    • Hi Russ, thanks for your comment! Unfortunately, there is currently no tool that automatically removes duplicate listings from any site. As I mentioned in the article, Yext doesn’t do it either. There is right now just one tool that specifically deals with duplicates by marking them for you as duplicates - the Sweet IQ’s one. Whitespark also shows duplicates in some situations, but they are not specifically tagged as such. All other tools do not find duplicate listings.

      We do all the research and duplicate removing manually, too. Hopefully, there will soon be a tool that will deal, at least partially automatically, with the process of removing duplicates, because this is a very serious one. As you noted in your comment, in some cases there are 5+ duplicates for a single business, which could be very frustrating.

  7. Their sales team has no idea what they are talking about… They start their poor 1990 sales pitch about local directory submissions that you can actually do for free if you take the time to do it.

    They try to tell you how your website is not showing up on Google, Yahoo, and Bing when it really does. Like they know exactly what your target audience, keywords, and goals are for your internet marketing campaign. The guy “Josh” even gave me a keyword suggestion that was search 0 times according to Google’s Keyword Tool. Thanks Josh for the great advice, you just told me how to make my company fail.

    They get an attitude with you over the phone when you ask them a question because they do not know how to answer it. Then they try to call you over and over again until you have no choice but to call authorities to get them you remove your number.

    • Google Keyword Tool isn’t always very accurate. Some very good keywords miss the former Google Keyword Tool and Current Google Keyword Planner. On that note - I agree with your earlier statement. Their sales strategy consists of many scripts and few facts

  8. Their underhanded tactics show a complete lack of professionalism and gives good reason not to trust anything they say or do. Constant harassment using bogus scan results to try to push you into using their services seems to be the norm. A quick check with the listing sites that claim to be incorrect shows the truth about their completely false claims!

    Their are plenty of legitimate companies who do far more then just listings for your money without the need for bogus reports!

  9. This company is HORRIBLE! We signed an agreement for one of our three locations, and discovered months later that they illegally took all of our numbers from a different location (outside of the radius we agreed upon) and were charging us for calls that should not have been routed thru them. I have been going in circles trying to get them refunded and haven’t heard back in weeks, despite having left numerous voicemails and e-mails. DO NOT DO BUSINESS WITH THEM! They will steal your money, and not respond to your concerns.

  10. Thank you for writing this detailed assessment. The CEO’s response seems like a good indication of the company’s attitude, which is condescending. Rather than saying ‘Yes, our service is a bit pricey.. Let’s offer a discount!’ he seems to take offense to what I view to be a minor point. And yes, it IS pricey for what they offer.

    • Hi Drake,

      I don’t necessarily think the biggest problem of Yext is their pricing structure (although I acknowledge it IS a problem). I think the biggest problem is that it doesn’t really deliver what it should actually deliver and this is clean business information across their network. If I pay $500 (per year) for Yext’s service I’d not be very happy to see that it fixed one of my 4 incorrect listings on Merchant Circle, but the other 3 are still there.


    • Hi David,

      I agree that Yext’s sales practices are definitely on the pushy side. You should definitely think wisely before investing $500 in anything, so Yext’s service is no exclusion.

      Regarding stopping them from calling you, I don’t think changing your phone number would be a solution. If I were you, I was going to register here:

    • Thanks DAVID STURTEVANT for the review, I will be telling every business owner to run away from this company, they are truly horrible at what they do, and they do nothing to keep up with SEM changes.

    • I just wanted to comment that Yext and Yodle work together very closely. I wouldn’t be surprised to find out they are owned by the same people!

      I found out about Yext because a client signed up with Yodle last fall to get a website built and hosted. Yodle sales people are extremely pushy, just like Yext. They called over and over and over again until they got the $$. Since my client’s business is a sole-proprietorship, small business, Yodle was not a good fit for it at all, but they didn’t care. It might be okay for your business if you are a larger company and have a marketing manager who has a good grasp of website design, but definitely not for a small business person with little internet savvy.

      The site they put up for him initially was a sad, sad joke, full of bad grammar, misspelled words, and inane “boilerplate” phrases, descriptions and photos. It did not even come close to accurately describing what his business has to offer. It had to be completely re-written, and I was never sure if the customer service reps even understood why. They did not seem to have a decent grasp of the English language, and could not answer questions about the site design, or fix a problem with the image gallery. And in four months of having Yodle’s service and search engine “optimization” services, my client has only received one call.

      One of the things Yodle did is sign up the new website with Yext, and when we cancelled the Yodle account and moved the site to a different host, it was somewhat of a problem to get the old phone number, which was controlled by Yodle, changed to the correct business phone number.

      I do have to say that Yext did take care of this quickly once I managed to explain what I wanted done and how Yodle had created the account at Yext so I had no information on logging in to make changes at Yext. They updated the incorrect phone number, but said they could not change a link included in the listing that is cut-off mid sentence so it doesn’t make any sense.

      Bottom line, I say stay away from both Yodle and Yext. These are companies that figured out there are a lot of business owners out there who want a web presence and know they need to show up in search engines, but know little about how these things work on the Internet - and Yext and Yodle figured out that they can take advantage of these business owners and take their money.

      If you get a solicitation from either of these companies, I recommend you shut them down right away and tell them you will report them for harassment if they call you again. Don’t waste your time or money.

  12. Do you think Google’s Penguin algo update will eventually incorporate Yext and other paid citation placements? These links are “do follows” and pass page rank, so I wouldn’t not be surprised if this is included in a future update. Curious of your thoughts?

    • Thanks for your comment Andrew. I believe business directories, or at least the high quality ones, have much more SEO strength than the web directories that have been hit (and keep getting hit) by Google’s algorithm updates. The more content, and the more relevant content, you have on a page where a link is coming from, the lesser the chances this link would be discounted or would hurt you. That is why the best places for citations are the ones which allow for a lot of customized content and for a lot of details for the business to be added. Such like Manta or HotFrog. At the same time, sites that allow user-generated content are also great, because it means the content on the page where the link comes from will be regularly updated. In general though, I am not a big fan of Yext’s idea of having the exactly same content across the board, and this content doesn’t just include name, address, phone number, and website, but also products and services information, descriptions, pictures, videos, etc. For me, this is not a good practice.

      • Nyagoslav very valuable post. I am just curious on your apparent view here that by including products, services, pictures, video, ect, is not good practice. Am I misunderstanding you? I wonder how posting your video everywhere through Yext or any other service would be detrimental? Thank you so much and keep up the incredible work you are doing. :-)

  13. So after reading this article, for the simple task of saving time and generating link credibility with the directory submissions. I have a new localized service business. If I sign up for 1 month and they submit my business’ information to over 40 listings for $67, that is a pretty good deal. My main concern is once the information has been syndicated, do I have to continue to pay them in order to have my business’ information remain on the those directories? If I am not interested in a power listing and have a niche business, this seems to be of good value for a 1 month subscription. Thought?

    • There are two catches here:

      1) You cannot subscribe for one month. You are billed yearly at $500/year.

      2) Once you cancel your subscription your listings might disappear or be reverted back to the state they were prior to you signing up for the service. According to Yext the call in these cases is of the particular business directory, but more often than not, the call is “No”.

      • What do you recommend for businesses who have used Yext and are trying to decide if they should renew?

        We agreed to use Yext last year and we are currently #1 for Google searches in a very competitive industry(insurance). I am afraid if I don’t renew and they put the listings back to their prior state that it will effect our placement.

        Am I best to just “suck it up” and renew with them? I hate to cancel my account and find out we have moved to Page 2 of Google.

        • Corey,

          There are a number of factors that affect local search rankings and what Yext offers covers just one base. And it is not even a whole base, as you could read in the article. There is, of course, the chance that your rankings might drop over time after you cancel with Yext if you do not take any action. But you could also take action, claim YOUR business listings by yourself, take control over them and make sure they are accurate across the board (not just across Yext’s network). Your rankings on Google will not go down overnight, that is for sure, so you would have at least a couple of weeks to take the necessary action.

  14. Thank you for saving me from high priced Yuck!
    what are the better alternatives?

    • I’d go with something more manual :) (hint)

      • Hi. I have recently been trying to manually claim my business listing on many of the sites that Yext deals with and am frustrated that the only way to do this is by subscribing with them. For example with mapquest, yahoolocal, & Bing. I am frustrated particularly because a previous large SEO and directory listing firm had paid for Yext on our behalf and now we have incorrect listings that they did not catch, but also did not involve us in.

        In our article you refer to manually claiming these listings and that is what I am attempting to do, am I missing something or did Yext partner with these sites to make it impossible to do without purchasing at least some portion of their product? I say portion because Mapquest says I can just purchase an update with them for the low low cost of $3 a month, I assume if we canceled at any point it would revert.

  15. We used yext service when it was new. Their price has went of 100 fold since their introduction. We hope there are more competition out their for the service they provide.

    • As I mentioned in the article, we do offer a somewhat of a substitute to Yext’s PowerListing service, although our offering is a little different. You could check here.

      • I see that you local/niche service can be had for only $5 each.

        I have 2 questions:

        It seems like YEXT offers a submission servers but they put the exact same description on each one - which if I am not mistaken, is not as good is having a different description.

        Do you offer that service (different descriptions on each submission)?

        From what I read above/below in the comments section, I see one, which says “My conclusion was that at least 21 out of 46 of the sites that they listed were free, and 13 others I couldn’t find how to create a business listing.”

        It appears that I need to use Yext for submission services for such sites as MapQuest and 12 others, which I have tried to get into, to no avail.

        I appreciate your comments and your review here!

        Thanks, Ben

        P.S. I am helping a friend get his website noticed (for free). I already have my own personal websites on the first page of Google and many other search engines but I am trying to find an easier way to do it with a whole lot less work than time.

  16. Yext Power Listing did absolutely nothing for my business. They charged my account automatically the second year without telling me in advance, claiming that once you sign up the first time that you agree to the automatic renewal. So, make sure that you notify them quickly that you do not want to renew. I got charged pr rated fees the second year as they would not give me a full refund. I received no benefit from them. Yext Power Listing wants you to do all the work with no guideline. It is not worth the monies they charge. Be aware of their hidden terms and conditions.

  17. I have a small startup locksmith business in St. Louis, mo & I have a lot of companies offering me the world as far as advertising goes. There is alot of competition (mostly from national “fraud” locksmith companies) that flood the internet with their listings. I would appreciate any advice you could give me on how to get the most bang for my advertising buck. Thank you for your time.

  18. This company is ballsy. I saw a post about Yext on LinkedIn, so I threw in some info about my CrossFit gym. I received a notice that said we had 215 location data errors on 40+ sites. All indicated we were “not standing out”. Several said we had no photo, wrong phone number, etc. which was inaccurate. Within moments, I received a call from a very pushy sales guy at Yext who knew far more about my business than I. He repeated what was displayed on the sight. “We were not standing out”. When I mentioned receiving web inquiries about CrossFit every day, he scoffed. I am not a fan of Yext.

  19. We use Yext for several accounts. So far its been good, but just noticed today that our Yelp listings are completely wrong. We are now conducting an audit on all listings. Another paid service that takes more of our time and money.

  20. Another thing YEXT doesn’t openly share is that if you discontinue their service, your data reverts back.

  21. If I were to use your service, would my information change back once I discontinued using it? Or is your service a one-time fee that will fix old information (addresses) about my business?
    Also, looking at your citations page you missed a word on the second line of step 4 ie …
    4. Actual citation building – after everything is ready, we start working on the actual citation building. All the work is manually completed by our in-house team and no automation is involved in the process, neither we outsource any part of it.,,,it should be ,,,neither do we outsource

  22. A question more than a comment.
    When I informed my yext salesman of the very bad reviews on yelp, he countered that those were from an older operation that did have flaws and that they sold off and what is now known as felix.
    He suggested I search for yext power listings , which I feel also has negative reviews.
    I really don’t want to waste my money.
    Any thoughts or advice on this?

  23. I really studied everything about the “partner” sites. The only thing that I was concerned about while researching yext was if their services actually work and if I could achieve those results without their help. I’ve done a very in depth study to see which of their business listing sites were free, and I posted my results on this page:

    My conclusion was that at least 21 out of 46 of the sites that they listed were free, and 13 others I couldn’t find how to create a business listing. Check out my page and scroll to the bottom for the list of free business listings that they want you to pay for…

  24. Read your article (understood some?). Here is my question: As a fence fabricator located in Northern California how can I offer all my services to the 600 plus fence contractors/installers in Northern California? Here is what I would like to try and do to answer my own question. I would like to list each of those fence contractors on as many search portals as possible so that when the local consumer calls the local fence contractor that local fence contractor will call me for my fabrication services?(!)

    joe underwood
    Titan Fence, Inc.

  25. Thank you for writing this great article. I am a small business owner and have been VERY frustrated with the sudden monopoly of Yext. I really don’t have the cash flow yet to invest in any SEO service, let alone $500 for Yext. Now, instead of spending many hours manually updating each site, most sites only allow updates from the Yext paid service. As a small business owner, I have quite a few problems with being forced out of the internet’s inner circle by big business. Now… what to do about it?

  26. Yeah, it’s pretty frustrating that a lot of these listers have created an alliance with Yext so you’re forced into using it. To be honest, I can’t believe there aren’t more outraged commenters on this page.

  27. So, MapQuest is the first top tier directory / map service that has gone totally Yext to my knowledge. Does anyone know if any others that require you to go through Yext as the only way to add a listing or update information? I know comes close, but I found a way to get around the Yext magnet still, however the listings submitted directly to take 3x as long to go live now as they used to. Looks like they are favoring the Yext data stream over their own direct channel.

    I’ve read a couple of posts suggesting that the MapQuest / Yext deal could be violating some laws. The crux of the matter is that MapQuest is offering public listings of public business information and not providing a way for for businesses to correct inaccurate information without paying a fee. That situation runs parrelell with Yext’s former life as a Pay-Per-Call company. Do a little digging and you can find a litany of upset people hammering them due to alleged fraud. But back to MapQuest, seems to me that MapQuest cannot publish incorrect information without offering a way to change it without paying.

    Just for the record, Judy’s Book is now charging a small one time service fee to update a listing. It’s just $5 and it expedites the update. I believe you can still write to customer service for an update, but in my experience, it takes about 2 months before it happens through that method. It happens within 5 days by paying $5. If my client wants it, I think $5 one time is no biggie.

    Summing it up, I’ve seen an interview with the Yext CEO and he sees Yext as a paradigm shift in our society. I think that’s a bit over the top. And, although Yext has been seen as a good thing as of late by many in the local SEO industry, I think the tide will turn with time and they will not monopolize the local search market in the end. Thanks for being focused on this Nyagoslav, I always enjoy your input on things local.

  28. Nyagoslav:

    I think you are fair in your article. For anyone that does not know — directory listings help your search engine ranking because it creates a web-wide consistency search engines can use to verify your information outside of their own databases. It creates a web-wide redundancy of business information. The more the better, usually, save for a few low-quality directory sites you’d probably rather not have your business on. Yext, while very good is simply not enough. If I use Whitespark’s Citation finder in my industry (computer repair) I find my competitors average about 60 directories each.

    Furthermore, as search engines get more sophisticated and further develop the ability to recognize more “natural and related activity” it is important to have citations that are in directories that are specific to your industry. This is where the work of a professional citation builder comes in. Take it from someone with years of experience trying to rank on search engines. It is critical to have a professional citation builder on your team for SEO. You will not maintain all your search engine positions without it.

  29. Does anyone know how does Yext verify the Merchant address and Phone #? Let us assume that I am a business ABC with XXXXX98 phone number however just to take advantage of/ruin reputation of other business I list my business as XYZ (more popular one). Does Yext verify this data and if yes, how long does this take? Have you come across any clarification by Yext on this?

  30. I made the mistake of trying to update just my physical address using their service, got half way through the process when they sprung the price tag on me. Just got a call today from a sales person who was my best friend on the front end of the call, but after politely explaining that for my size business I just wouldn’t be interested, I got a “Well F*** you!” and hung up.

    Classy. Now I’m probably on their marketing list and will never get them to stop calling- just like the “Update your Google listing” calls I get 3x a day!

  31. I wonder how much does Yext pay to major publishers for every listing?

  32. Thanks for the post. I’m no fan of Yext. The sites in its network used to link correctly to my company’s website. Now, they don’t, but there is no way to correct the listings without paying their exorbitant subscription fees. I complained about this to the representative who called me with a hard sell tactic, and she smarted off at me. So I hung up - life’s too short. Yext seems to me a very dishonest company. I intend to research the company further and if necessary, report them.

  33. My company - a somewhat small business with 9 locations and 170 employees - is looking into buying with Yext. We are trying to develop our SEO and get our name out to more clients. I was hoping if someone could tell me whether it would be worthwhile or not to work with Yext to modify our presence on the web…

    Also, what sites are they actually able to change? The rep I spoke with said there are over 40 sites they can modify for you, but from what I have been reading, that does not seem true..

  34. I found Yext sales to be very misleading about what they would provide for my business and they charged me 200.00 more for the first year than they apparently charged others. I feel it is a scam. We were not listed where they promised to list us and refused to be accountable when I brought all of this to their attention. They also used alot of double talk and spin and they talk over the head of the laymen. I very highly do not recommend them to anyone.

  35. YELP and YEXT are the same as the gestapo and SS are to the Nazi party. One and the same for all practical purposes now, even though at one time they may have had distinguishing purposes. if it isn’t Google- the gog and magog of biblical scripture, then it is YELP YEXT YAHOO as the holy anti Christ trinity of the internet. Setting aside all those colorful analogies; the BIG Y controls us all who need breathing space on the internet (marketing ability). Im personally a google fan, with all of its branches. the big Y will kill any small business. First with its gestapo arm, i mean YELP, they put out fictitious and slanderous reviews of your local small business, forcing you to wither on the vine until you come checkbook in hand to them and buy the anti-Church’s pardon. They know that in one year, no small business can afford $500 in internet marketing, so only the big fish will survive the first plague. Their plague of misinformation as already talked about by so many above will wipe off the world wide web any who managed to pay, providing only an abandoned phone booth in the arizona ringing when you call their support line after paying. Now they are free and clear and within the law to set up concentration camps and exterminate those companies who remain. Easy to do as they continue to buy more and more platforms, filling them with goobly gook misinfo and telling clients, oh you can edit your own info… we will just edit it back and duplicate it and completely screw with any data strings that google might search in its algorithms. Welcome to the information era where all of us businesses depend on the system of Roman roads we call internet marketing. The gestapo roadblock is just up ahead…

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