Yelp Inc. (NYSE:YELP), the company that connects people with great local businesses, today announced a series of new features that make it even easier for consumers to discover businesses that fit their needs and contribute helpful content on Yelp. The company is introducing Yelp Guaranteed, a new satisfaction guarantee program that gives people peace of mind when hiring eligible home service businesses; an enhanced search experience powered by Artificial Intelligence (AI) to surface helpful insights on local businesses; new features that encourage richer and more detailed reviews; as well as an improved user experience across the platform that allows consumers to seamlessly find the right business for their needs.
“At Yelp, we’re always innovating on ways for consumers and businesses to connect in more seamless and meaningful ways,” said Craig Saldanha, chief product officer at Yelp. “Millions of people rely on Yelp to make important spending decisions with local businesses, and their trust is at the center of everything we do. With the new updates we’re announcing today, we want to help consumers more easily discover businesses that meet their needs in a way that is both precise and personal, as well as give our users more engaging ways to share their experiences with the community.”
Yelp Guaranteed Provides Peace of Mind When Hiring Home Service Professionals
Over the last several years since the introduction of Request a Quote, Yelp focused on differentiating the product experience in services categories for both sides of the marketplace — to help consumers easily hire service pros, and better match services businesses with relevant customer leads. As part of this evolution, Yelp is rolling out Yelp Guaranteed, a new satisfaction guarantee program that allows Request a Quote users to receive up to $2,500 back in the event something goes wrong with a project from an eligible business. Building on the growth of Request a Quote and Request a Call, as well as the recently launched ‘Projects’ tab, Yelp Guaranteed provides consumers with added confidence and peace of mind when hiring home service professionals.
At launch, Yelp Guaranteed will be available on iOS to consumers in San Francisco, New York City, Chicago, Seattle and Washington D.C., among some of Yelp’s most popular home services — such as movers, plumbers, contractors, home cleaners, landscapers and more. This summer, the company plans to expand the availability of Yelp Guaranteed nationwide, and roll it out on Android and desktop.
Enhancing the Search Experience on Yelp Leveraging LLMs and AI
Yelp has rolled out new search features across all platforms that use AI and large language models (LLMs) to surface smarter suggestions and insights based on the user’s search intent.
- Review highlights in search results: Leveraging LLMs for specific keyword searches, Yelp will now better understand the nuance of what consumers are looking for, and highlight relevant snippets from reviews under each business listing in search results.
- AI-powered search suggestions: To streamline the discovery experience for consumers who already have a specific business in mind, Yelp is now using AI to suggest businesses consumers may be interested in across the U.S. — not bound by the user’s current location.
“People often come to Yelp with high intent — LLMs provide Yelp with the speed and scale to quickly parse vast amounts of review data, so we can succinctly summarize insights in a meaningful way. We envision this technology will further help both consumers with complex and nuanced needs, as well as those with broad, open-ended searches by leveraging the more than 265 million high-quality consumer reviews on Yelp’s platform,” said Saldanha.
To support users without a specific search in mind, Yelp is also introducing new search features that will help them narrow down their search and discover new restaurants to try.
- Surprise Me: For consumers who have a tough time deciding where to eat, Yelp’s new Surprise Me feature generates restaurant recommendations, which users can find from the Yelp home feed and search results page. Surprise Me is currently featured on iOS, and will be available on Android in the coming months.
- Clickable Category Tags: Users can find this feature on business listings for restaurants, food and nightlife searches, helping undecided consumers better refine their general searches (such as for “restaurants” or “dinner”) with category-specific searches. New clickable category tags can be found on iOS, with Android coming soon.
Revamping the Review Experience with New Ways to Contribute
In 2022, Yelp saw an increase in review contributions by reducing review writing friction, with approximately 21 million new reviews contributed throughout the year. To better inform consumers’ spending decisions and expand upon the platform’s trusted content on local businesses, Yelp is releasing more visual and interactive ways for consumers to contribute.
- Videos in reviews: To share their experiences in more visual and engaging ways, reviewers will be able to upload high resolution, short-form videos on iOS alongside their text review and photos. For example, a tableside preparation or the unique vibe of the restaurant. Yelp plans to roll out video in reviews to Android soon.
- Review topics: Users will find new interactive topics — “food,” “service” and “ambiance” — at the top of their review drafts that turn green with a checkmark when each topic is addressed in their review. These topics not only help alleviate writer’s block, but also help contributors write more helpful reviews. Review topics are live on iOS and Android, and the company plans to roll it out on desktop this summer.
- New expressive review reactions: To enhance the way people engage with and show appreciation for one another’s reviews, Yelp is introducing new review reactions: “Helpful,” “Thanks,” “Love this” and “Oh no.” New reactions are live on iOS and desktop, and coming to Android devices this summer.
Creating a More Visual and Seamless Yelp Experience
Yelp has rolled out new features that better surface the company’s rich, visual content and make it easier to access reliable and useful information on local businesses. This includes the ability for business owners using Yelp Connect to upload videos to their posts, a refreshed home feed with more helpful information about local businesses, a new navigation and photo experience on business pages, passwordless login and more. All of these new user experience features are now available on iOS, with many available on Android and desktop.
Additional Information and Assets
Learn more about the series of new updates Yelp announced in a blog post and a video overview from Saldanha. Assets and images can be found here. For more information about Yelp, visit Yelp’s Fast Facts page.
This press release contains forward-looking statements relating to, among other things, Yelp’s future product plans, including the ability of its investments and initiatives to drive profitable long-term growth and shareholder value, that are based on its current expectations, forecasts, and assumptions that involve risks and uncertainties.
Factors that could cause or contribute to such differences also include, but are not limited to, those factors that could affect Yelp’s business, operating results and stock price included under the captions “Risk Factors” and “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” in Yelp’s most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K or Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q at yelp-ir.com or the SEC’s website at sec.gov.
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