Millions of people turn to Yelp every day to connect with great local businesses, make informed spending decisions and decide where to eat. To further help consumers stay in the loop on what’s going on at restaurants in their city, today, we’re launching an entirely new experience that better surfaces relevant, local and unique content from restaurants to a user’s home feed.
For the first time ever, Yelp iOS users will be able to scroll through a vertical feed that features visual content from local restaurants in their city, including Popular Dishes, popular photos from consumers and updates directly from restaurants. The content shown on Yelp’s home feed is contextualized to users based on various factors, including their proximity to the business, the recency of the content and the popularity of a dish in reviews.
When a user clicks on a Popular Dish on their home feed, they will be redirected to see more photos and reviews mentioning the dish from that restaurant. To identify Popular Dishes, Yelp uses machine learning to look at the most commonly mentioned dishes within a restaurant’s reviews, and pairs them with photos and reviews of that dish. When a user clicks on a popular photo that isn’t a dish, such as the interior or exterior of the restaurant, they will see more details about the photo on the business page.
For restaurants that use Yelp Connect, a paid feature that enables businesses to share updates with new and existing customers, their posts will gain greater visibility than ever before as users will now easily discover these Connect posts right on their home feed. In fact, our initial testing showed that this new experience may help increase consumer engagement with businesses’ Connect posts by as much as 30%. When users click on a Connect post from their home feed, they will have the option to view the business’s Yelp page or share the post with others. Users can also engage with this content by tapping the heart icon, letting the business know that their content is resonating with potential customers.
We’re always thinking about how to best highlight content from the wide variety of great local businesses on Yelp, as well as improve the consumer experience to make it easier for people to discover more of their communities. In the coming months, users can expect to see more community-driven content on their Yelp home feed from around their city.
This new experience will roll out today on iOS in nearly 150 metros across more than 25 U.S. states. Stay tuned for additional updates!