« January 2012 | Main | March 2012 »

February 2012

February 27, 2012

It’s That Time of Year Again.... “Yelp Drinks” Returns to 18 Cities!

Get ready to belly up to the bar: starting today, Yelp Drinks Week is making its way to 18 markets across the US, Canada and London. From swanky restaurant bars to dive-y watering holes, Yelp Drinks is a week-long happy hour (2/27-3/4*) where participating establishments will be offering half off three of their best beverages!

Screen shot 2012-02-28 at 10.19.29 AM
In order to get ourselves into the spirit of, well, spirits, we decided to conduct yet another survey to gather some fun facts on how yelpers imbibe. Some of our favorite findings from respondents:

- Top 3 types of bars you’ll find yelpers sidling up to?

1) Dive bar (42%)

2) Craft cocktail bar (21%)

3) Sports bar (18%)

- Nearly 60% would prefer to sit next to Barack Obama over any other US presidential candidate (and, if you must know, “none” was the second most popular answer with 21% of the vote).
- Although it was a close draw, “an ice cold beer” was the leading contender for “go-to beverage”.
- When it comes to vino, red is the preferred choice with 60% of the vote, white pulling in 29% and bubbly trailing behind at 11%.
-  And after last call, more than half of respondents claim they head home to pound some water and hit the hay vs. checking out the after party or drunk texting their ex.  

Full List of Participating Cities:
Calgary (Calgary is hosting Yelp’s Triple Threat - a cool twist to Yelp Drinks Week that will incorporate food and art)
Fort Worth
Jersey City
Los Angeles
*Minneapolis (Yelp Drinks Week will kick off on 4/9)
*Orange County (Yelp Drinks Week will kick off on 3/5)
San Diego
San Francisco
Washington DC
*Vancouver (Vancouver is testing out a fun spin on Yelp Drinks Week starting in March - stay tuned for more details!)

February 22, 2012

Making Check-Ins More Meaningful

A check-in is a simple way to keep tabs on where you’ve been, broadcast to your friends where you are, and discover more about other people in your community. After a couple of check-ins at a business you are given the title of “Regular” and if you have the most check-ins there you become the Duke (or Duchess).

To better match our real-world experience, and make the titles of Regular and Duke more meaningful to you and the businesses you frequent, we’ve made a few updates:

  • You still have to be a repeat visitor to a business to be a Regular there, but yelpers who have visited a business more frequently and more recently are given a higher Regular ranking.
  • The Regular ranked #1 now earns the business’ Dukedom crown, not just the person with the most check-ins there all-time.

This means that if you start visiting a business more than others it’ll be easier for you to move up in rank and get the Dukedom. This also means that Dukes or Duchesses who stop checking in can be more easily challenged for the throne.

We hope you love these changes as much as we do. To learn more about these changes visit the Yelp FAQ.

February 10, 2012

This Year’s “Most Romantic Yelp City in the World” is...

Whether you love it or hate it, it’s that time of year where Cupid descends and romance is in the air: Valentine’s Day!

Leading up to and on February 14th, we see searches surge for all things romantic on Yelp. In fact, you may remember this post from last year where we crowned Tacoma, Washington as “The Most Romantic City on Yelp” based on “romantic-type” queries and some number-crunching.

Well, it looks like Cupid has flown the coop and descended on a new city of love. How do we know? Our team of love-struck engineers took a look at our search data from 2011 and found a list of search queries that suddenly “pop” in February. These include terms you may expect like “french food,” “ocean views,” “lingerie,” “dinner & movie,” “chocolate covered strawberries,” but also some surprises like “cheap flowers” and, er, “sex shops.” (Hey, to each his own!)

Then what? We look at which cities search for these romantic terms the most the week before and during Valentine’s Day. To make sure the numbers are accurately reflected we did two things:
  • Each city must have a total of at least 100 searches to qualify;
  • Like last year, we used the Wilson Score of Proportion to calculate. Why don’t we just count up the number of romantic searches by city and order by that count? Well, that wouldn’t be very fair as our biggest Yelp communities like San Francisco and New York have a much larger number of absolute searches. The Wilson Score gives us a much clearer and fairer picture of just which cities have set their hearts on matters of the, well, heart!
But we’re not here to talk about numbers, we’re here to talk about LOVE! Without further ado, the “Most Romantic City on Yelp” is...

Surprised? Behind the Jersey-stereotypes, these Guidos and Guidettes have a romantic streak and aren’t shy about treating their current smushes to a nice steak dinner or back rub -- in addition to gym, tanning and laundry, of course. Or maybe it was just because of Snookin’ for Love? I guess we’ll never know.

February 01, 2012

Giants vs Patriots? Wings vs Nachos? No, no, Wings *and* Nachos

Super Bowl XLVI is set to be the most urban Super Bowl in the event’s 46 year history and downtown Indy has transformed from Naptown to a 5 star Snaptown! While the official champion title will go to either the Giants or the Patriots, we wanted to give everyone heading to Indianapolis for the big game a fair chance at becoming a winner when navigating the city. Whether a local or tourist, we have a feeling this Yelp guide will have you doing a touchdown dance of your own!

Finding your way around:

  • Pro tip: Parking downtown is sure to be a nightmare, so why not park in an outlying neighborhood and catch the free bus to Super Bowl Village? There will be 5 free buses running Thurs., 2/2 through Sat., 2/4, from 10am to 2am, which will circulate 4 downtown neighborhoods. Each bus comes complete with a guide from the community that is also drilled in all things Yelp, meaning they can help you find any of these places and more via our Yelp Mobile apps.
  • Bikes! Indianapolis is a great biking city with designated bike lanes everywhere and completely flat streets. You can rent bikes at The Indy Bike Hub.
  • When you gotta go... While Pats fans may be tempted to sneak into the lobby bathroom at The University Hotel (where the Patriots players are bunking up), our vote goes to our own Indianapolis Colts Grille, which is complete with a mirrored one way window above the urinals so the guys won’t miss a moment of the game.

Best places outside of Lucas Oil Stadium to watch the game:

  • The Yelp Indy Elite Lounge is open to the public (21+) and is a great place to chill while escaping the masses. With HDTVs, wifi, a Bloody Mary & beer bar, corn hole, foos ball & snuggies, this is your high five haven!
  • Care to watch the game with locals? The Dorman Street Saloon is just like your Uncle’s basement -- complete with house pepper-infused Bloody Mary’s and TVs bigger than the bar.
  • So you don’t have a ticket to the game? Yeah, neither do we. If you want to watch the game in the shadow of The Drum, Spencer’s Stadium Tavern is across the street. If you’re a Pats fan, word on the I-70 is that fleets of RVs are on their way to pack this bar full of fans that aren’t in the stadium.

Indy must-dos:

  • As part of the Super Bowl legacy project, 46 murals have been painted around town. Our favorite? The Kurt Vonnegut Mural: a 3 story ode to our hometown hero.
  • Did you know, next to D.C., Indy has the most memorials in the country? Start at the Monument Circle to grab a bite at one of the great food trucks, then work your way north through the War Memorial and to the American Legion Mall.
  • The Batali sandwich at Goose the Market has been rated as one of the best sandwiches in America. When will you be back in Indy? You don’t know do you... now you know what to do. Go. Now.

While we’re happy to host some of the biggest Giants and Pats fans out there, we know not everyone is able to make the trek to Indy for this time-old rivalry. Never fear, my colleagues in New York and Boston have pulled together the best places to catch the game, grab some grub and talk some smack in their respective cities. Check it out here!