Does a dramatic reduction in outbound traffic from online travel agency sites mean they are getting stickier or are they perhaps consciously retaliating against hotel-chain websites for direct-booking campaigns? Or is something else up?
Yelp's frustrating attempt to push users from the mobile web to its smartphone app has apparently paid off.
The next great user review product will need to balance the ease of reviewing with the reliability of the review. That's not a balance that any of the major players are willing to embrace yet.
Given the fact that Yelp acquired SeatMe a couple of years ago, it was only a matter of time before the Yelp partnership became as stale as yesterday's bagels. With Yelp, Priceline's OpenTable, TripAdvisor's The Fork, and countless startups such as Reserve pushing ahead, the competition in the restaurant reservations sector will only get more heated.
Uh oh, the U.S. government is now sanctioning unverified user reviews. Even Donald Trump's undocumented immigrants can chime in about the TSA or IRS. Seriously, this is a smart move by the feds to use a modern tool such as Yelp to get feedback. Let the games begin.
Travel brands must be conscious about how people express themselves online to provide a platform-specific personalized customer service.
Yelp would like to be more like TripAdvisor. But it's not.
Any of the big travel industry players should be looking at Yelp seriously, though they're likely to be outbidded by some of the mainstream tech players.
Yelp's wealth of local data and reviews could make it an attractive buy for a large Internet company like Google, Facebook or even TripAdvisor, which has expressed interest in restaurant reviews.
How deep will the concessions be that the European Commission will be able to coax out of Google? And will the U.S. Federal Trade Commission be embarrassed into action?