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Google close to buying Yelp for $500 million?

updated 10:35 am EST, Fri December 18, 2009

Google would get local searching firm

Google is deep in talks to acquire Yelp, more than one source claimed late Thursday. The local business location and reviewing site is deemed "very likely" to sell itself for over $500 million based both on its valuation and its heavy Internet traffic.

Those speaking to TechCrunch don't specifically say why Google would acquire Yelp, but it's believed to be part of a push for more detailed local information. The search engine giant already has search and reviews systems in Google Maps and recently introduced QR code stickers to point to reviews on location. Also, Yelp results often appear on Google searches where Google has no real influence on the smaller firm.

Yelp has the advantage of both a central portal for finding restaurants and other local shops but also has a particular advantage in the mobile space, where its apps for the iPhone and other platforms provide an emphasis on learning about and navigating to businesses where Google's own tools are still focused primarily on general direction-finding.



By Electronista Staff
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  1. My Dog Wally

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: May 2005

    +4

    Yelp confuses editorial with advertising

    I used to be a heavy user of Yelp until a couple of my business-owning acquaintances told me the same story. They were pitched by Yelp to advertise on the site, and later discovered that the few negative reviews they had mysteriously disappeared after they agreed to advertise. As a user, I find it appalling that Yelp would trade trust for dollars. I was a Yelp fan because I felt I could go there and learn how people felt about a business. But if the companies who advertise on the site are less likely to show negative reviews, Yelp becomes worthless to me.

  1. JuanGuapo

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jan 2008

    +4

    Well...

    ....I guess it's time to close my Yelp account.

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