Yelp, with its service providing millions of reviews and ratings of local businesses, will begin displaying ads on its mobile app. Starting now, Yelp will be displaying mobile ads of a few exclusively companies such as Taco Bell, InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), and Miller Lite. Beginning April 2013, Yelp’s ad inventory will be available to other buyers. Buyers will be able to leverage geo-location, cross-device tracking, and other features when targeting their ads on Yelp’s platform.
This is exciting news for both Yelp and advertisers focused on local. According to Adage, a little less than half of Yelp’s searches (45%) are from its mobile app and the numbers are higher on weekends. Last quarter, Yelp’s app was accessed on 9.2 million unique mobile devices. It makes sense why Yelp has such high mobile traffic with an increase on weekends since it is usually the tool of choice for on-the-spot decisions for restaurants. Marketers definitely see a lot of potential for location-based advertising. And as companies steadily increase their ad budget for mobile, Yelp is very well positioned to compete for those ad dollars.