Yelp CEO Jeremy Stoppelman recently criticized Google for the way the search giant uses its reviews within Places.
In an interview with The Telegraph, Stoppelman said, “We are unhappy with the way Google uses our users’ review on its Places page. However, there is no solution to the problem. Google’s position is that we can take ourselves out of its search index if we don’t want them to use our reviews on Places.
“But that is not an option for us, and other sites like us – such as TripAdvisor – as we get a large volume of our traffic via Google search. We just don’t get any value out of our reviews appearing on Google places and haven’t been given an option other than to remove ourselves from search, how to improve this situation.”
Unsurprisingly, Google being the powerful giant it is, adamantly refuses to negotiate with Yelp.
“We can’t comment on conversations with partners, but as we’ve said before, our goal with local search is to help Google users find the local information they’re looking for online,” explained a Google rep.
“Each day we send millions of customer referrals to local businesses and third party websites, such as review sites, through local search. The overwhelming feedback we get from users, business owners and website owners is that they value the answers and traffic they receive from local search.”
Without seeing any money from Google besides traffic value, Yelp can’t really do anything but complain.
Of course, there were rumors that Yelp was in talks about acquisition with Google in 2009, but a more realistic option these days might be an IPO.
At somewhat of a crossroads, Stoppelman noted the next step for Yelp is continued international expansion, while concurrently honing its reputation as the premier destination for information on local businesses.
Yelp has battled negative allegations that linked the site to paid “good” reviews, seriously tarnishing its reputation as a reliable site. Nonetheless, the site still boasts over 16 million published reviews and hopes for continued growth.