Yelp’s General Manager, Devon Wright, announced the launch of Yelp Connect. This new feature is a way of letting users go ahead of customer reviews and view what the restaurants have to say about themselves.

More About Yelp Connect 

Wright stated that with Yelp Connect, restaurants would be capable of posting updates, like new additions to the menu, happy hour specials and also upcoming events. 

These following updates are then displayed on the Yelp homepage in a weekly email and on the restaurant’s profile page.

Meanwhile, consumers can follow restaurants to view these updates.

Yelp also shows this information to users who have shown interest in a restaurant by making a reservation or saving its profile.

Why is Yelp Connect Different?

Restaurants are already posting this type of information on social media.

But Wright said Yelp enables them to approach a high-intent audience. 

It is meant for users who are not just browsing for updates, but who are seeking to go out for a meal.

The product manager for Yelp Reservations and Waitlist, Guang Yang, also stated that restaurants could set end dates for their Yelp posts.

This could make it more convenient for them to share things like limited-time menus.

Yelp Connect is priced at $199 per month for U.S. restaurants but is available for $99 per month for a limited time. 

Yelp connect helps restaurants post updates | iTMunch

Yelp To Improve The Waitlist Experience 

Along with launching Connect, Yelp is also starting an upgrade to its Waitlist feature.

This enables consumers to see the current estimated wait time at a restaurant and to enter the queue straight from the Yelp app.

Yang stated that Yelp can now use live data from a restaurant to predict the average wait time.

Hence if you want to have dinner tonight at 7 pm, Yelp can tell how long you will have to wait depending upon the size of your group.

Yelp is further using these predictions to launch another feature called Notify Me. 

If you need to get seated at a particular restaurant at a specific time, you can tap a button to get a notification.

This will help you join the waitlist at the right time, thereby considerably reducing the wait time. 

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Image Courtesy: Yelp, Inc., Wikipedia