While we’re on the topic of what we don’t do (see Yelp’s Troubles: Keep the User-Reviews Community Strong), we thought we’d take some time to explain a little more about what we do and why we get so excited about it. We like to think of ourselves as a friendlier Web search engine that allows people to look up local businesses and read recommendations (the good and the bad) about them that people just like themselves have written. Simply put, Judy’s Book is word of mouth on the Web, allowing anyone who’s looking around for a good local service or business to choose the best and avoid the worst.
We get excited about this business because it goes beyond Web search results and helps foster local communities. Say that your car’s brakes are on the fritz and you’re new in town: few things bring anxiety faster than the thought of choosing an automotive repair shop that may charge double what the brake job is worth. However, when a quick search on Judy’s Book helps you find a shop that 20 people in your neighborhood have found to be trustworthy, suddenly you’re not just the newbie any longer. You’re the newbie with a lot of Judy’s Book neighbors who have your back. This is why this community activity is so valuable, even if it isn’t happening face-to-face.
Local businesses play the other equally critical role of leveraging the local community on the Web. At Judy’s Book, we recognize that not all local businesses are run the same way. Your business may be that trustworthy local repair shop, trying to get a fair share of customers while the shady shop down the street has twice the advertising budget. Judy’s Book was created to help businesses like yours leverage the power of these local Web communities to bring new, loyal customers to your doors. And they will, because all the hard work you put into treating existing customers right will show up in the reviews they write up and the new customers who take their word for it and pay you a visit.
We have a rich set of tools designed for different types of local businesses, and for businesses at different stages. If you are just hanging up your shingle, we have an Enhanced option for new businesses that allows you to enhance your profile with photos, a message from the owner, your own Web site, and more. If your business has been operating for a while and you want to take it to the next level in 2010, check out our Premium option, which lets you add video, get broader exposure on the site, and get a professional write-up, among other benefits. Also, if even the thought of online marketing makes you want to go back to bed, the Premium option includes social media marketing tools.
Check out our comparison chart to see what works for your business. If you’re interested, we’d love to have a conversation with you about what it’s like to work with us. And thanks for being part of the Judy’s Book community.