I was surprised at first when I read this, but given the proliferation of Smartphones, it's actually not that hard to believe. Even my 64 year old father uses a Blackberry and my 10 year old nephew has an Iphone. Yelp has become the trusted go-to resource for anyone searching for local businesses. In June 2010, Yelp announced that every 5 seconds, someone uses their mobile phone app to call a local business. During the month of May, Yelp for iPhone had over 1.4 million visitors.
Imagine visiting or moving to a new city where you don’t know where to shop, eat, hang out, etc. The first thing most people do these days is search Yelp. Yelp’s new mobile app can even use the GPS built-in to your Smartphone to find out where you are and what local businesses are nearby. There has been enormous growth in the amount of people searching the internet from their mobile phones. These numbers are expected to rapidly increase over the next decade. According to a recent Smartphone Intelligence Survey done by Compete, a leading web analytics company, nearly one in three mobile phone users has called or stopped into a local business after finding it using a local search application such as Yelp. Close to a third of Smartphone owners discovered at least two new businesses that they were not previously aware of as a result of using local search applications. In a study released today by the Pew Internet & American Life Project, nearly 6 in 10 U.S. adults access the internet wirelessly from a phone or laptop, up from 51% in April 2009. The study also reported that 47% of adults go online with a laptop using Wi-Fi or a mobile broadband card, while 40% use the Internet, email, or instant messaging on a mobile phone. For brick-and-mortar businesses that service customers in-person, Yelp is no longer an option, it has become a necessity. After all, unlocking your business listing is free, easy and only takes less than 5 minutes to do. Once your local business listing is unlocked on Yelp, it will appear on the both the website and the mobile phone app – for free. According to Yelp's website "Unlocking your business page on Yelp is the first step in joining the conversation about your business." Once you have unlocked your local business listing on Yelp, you will begin receiving a weekly summary of important statistics including: - How many people looked at your business page from their Yelp app - How many people called your business from their Yelp app - How many people generated directions to your business from their Yelp app, - How many people "checked in" to your business via the Yelp app. For more information on how to unlock your local business listing on Yelp, please visit: http://www.yelp.com/business/unlocking To download the Yelp Mobile Phone App, please visit http://www.yelp.com/yelpmobile.