Yelp launches revamped feed with AI-powered business summaries | TechCrunch
Yelp is releasing new features as part of its winter release, which includes a more visual feed, AI-powered summaries of businesses, and number masking while contacting businesses for better privacy.
Feed and discovery updates
The business discovery platform is updating its feed on iOS — with an Android rollout planned in the next few months — to show more visual content, including collections from Yelp Elites and videos posted by businesses. Last year, the company rolled out the ability for users to post 12-second video reviews. In the coming months, the revamped feed will also feature these videos.
Additionally, Yelp is rolling out a new search experience for the iOS app, which will show popular searches, recent searches, and recently viewed businesses even before you type in a query.
Similar to the home feed, the search results will include an image-forward experience that will show relevant images from the listings. Plus, for better discoverability, Yelp will feature “People also search for” and “Popular dishes nearby” (through photos posted by reviewers) carousels.
Last year, Yelp started to highlight relevant reviews through AI with an update. The company said it has improved that feature on the back end with the ability to match more queries. Additionally, Yelp now uses AI to show a summary of a business when you open its page. This is based on recent reviews posted by users.
Yelp is also rolling out review-related updates, such as badges for reviews, and more interactive review topic categories to help users get started with a review. The platform will start showing the badges next to a user’s review in the next few months to establish that a person is likely passionate about this category.
Updates to services experience
Yelp is trying to connect users to better service professionals by asking users questions about the issue beforehand through a form. The form has questions such as the category of services, what you need to repair, and what the issue is.
Plus, the company allows you to send photos and videos to service professionals so that you don’t have to describe what you need just through text.
Yelp said previously when it shared your number with service companies, they tended to call even after the project was complete. To maintain user privacy, the company now uses a temporary masked number — through a partnership with Twilio — to connect you to businesses. The platform also gives you the ability to directly text businesses instead of having to open the app each time you want to chat with them.
Last year, the company announced the “Yelp Guaranteed” program that offered users up to $2,500 in a money-back guarantee if a project goes wrong. Yelp said the protection is now available across the U.S.
With the winter release, Yelp also rolled out the ability to send quick replies to businesses and archive projects. For businesses, it is introducing a revamped home page, a better onboarding experience with new budget recommendations for ad-sends, and a way to schedule consultations with Yelp advertising representatives.
Yelp, which is announcing its new earnings on February 8, posted a net revenue of $345 million for Q3 2023. At that time, the company also slightly raised its annual revenue outlook for 2023 from $1.332 billion to $1.337 billion.