We are talking about a website that is well known for publishing crowd-sourced reviews about local businesses and is also active with online reservation service. The website is owned by an American multinational corporation having headquartered in 140 New Montgomery, San Francisco, California.
Recently, the company earned the revenue of US$713 million in financial year 2016 and also got ranked at 186th position on Alexa in June 2018.
When it got started and how it works?
Yelp website came into existence in October 2004 and was formed by two former PayPal employees, Jeremy Stoppelman and Russel Simmons with a $1 million funding. The platform has now taken root in countries across the globe counted around 32 countries in a form of both the mobile application and the website.
It allows user to search, locate, book and review the local businesses. One can create a profile, add friends, chat in forums and visit offline Yelp events. They can also join the Elite Squad by posting well-written reviews, high-quality photos and by fulfilling other prerequisites. Yelp
earn most of its revenue from targeted advertisements as per 2016 report the directory of local businesses earned around $713 million from the site. They offer two premium model options for advertisements: the self service and the full service advertisements which have worked great in the direction.
Why they are so popular?
Yelp has worked very well on creating a platform for bringing “word of mouth” online. It connects people with great local businesses by contributing approximately around 155 million cumulative reviews of almost every type of local business, from restaurants, boutiques, mechanics, plumbers, salons to dentists and many more on the list. These reviews written by people further contribute to share their everyday experience with others thus offering a voice to consumers.
Other sites are also available but Yelp brings you all in one package like listing and making local businesses visible to users, differentiates itself with the crowd sourced reviews of those businesses on its platform. Even they have reservation services and food delivery/take out services added up on their business model. They recognise active members and offer them following benefits for their participation and constructive reviews;
• Free gifts (T-shirts, Lip Balm, etc)
• A sparky badge on their profile page
• An invite to exclusive elite events
• An invite to try out new businesses