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April 21, 2010

Yelp Partners with Facebook for a More Personal Experience

Here at Yelp, we're always excited to announce feature and site improvements with the help of great partners. Today, we've been invited to collaborate with the folks at Facebook to make your Yelp experience even more personal.

First, it's important to note that anyone who doesn't wish to take advantage of this new personalization feature can easily opt out, either here on Yelp or via Facebook. Starting today, you will see a blue notice at the top of any Yelp page with your Facebook profile picture, name, and an opportunity to turn off the new settings.  

Unless you ask not to be reminded again, you will see that notice a few more times just to make sure you are clear on the updates. You can also read more information here.

But what does this partnership mean for yelpers new and old? Many things!

One of the coolest features is that Yelp can now be instantly personalized for new users if they have a Facebook account:

Friend_Reviews

  • A new user will land on Yelp and be able to see which Facebook friends have reviewed a business and easily read their reviews.
  • You can see which friends have like a particular business (more on that in a minute)
  • Or view a feed of what their friends are doing on Yelp (adding pictures, writing reviews, and liking businesses).
  • Most importantly, using information from Facebook, we have made signing up for Yelp a snap.

Logged in users will also get some great new features:

Activity_Feed

  • We have a way for you to quickly see which Facebook friends are on Yelp so you can add them all as Yelp friends.
  • You can setup auto-friending, which will automatically friend Facebook friends who sign up in the future (so you don't have to keep checking to see if new friends have signed up)
  • An Activity Feed (similar to the one on our iPhone app) that shows what your Yelp friends have been up to on the site.
  • An easy way to import your Facebook profile picture as your Yelp profile picture.

The ability to "Like" a business:

Like_Button

  • Any user logged into either Yelp or Facebook will be able to like a business on Yelp by pressing a Like button. This is similar to the functionality Facebook has that allows you to like the content your friends post on Facebook.
  • Like is a Yelp-built feature that integrates with Facebook's new social plugin, so liking a business on Yelp will also means you like it on Facebook (you can turn the sharing part off).
  • When you click on the Like button for a business, it will also show up on your Facebook profile (similar to the way pages you fan on Facebook are added today) - this link will point back to Yelp's business page. 
  • A use-case that we're all excited about: perhaps you see a 3-star business and you're unsure of whether you want to try it. But you see that several of your friends have "liked" it so you give it a shot  and it's really a 4-star business in your book.  So now you can write a review telling people how great it is!
We're super stoked about today's partnership with Facebook because we're always looking for innovative ways to connect people with great local businesses and to share that content with people who are the most relevant to you. If you have questions, don't hesitate to check out our FAQ or email us at feedback@yelp.com.