Restaurants, Yelp said on its blog, make up 29% of its reviews. The partnership seems strategically smart.
One-click from Yelp will allow a user to book via OpenTable. OpenTable users will have to use the same email to sign up for Yelp as they did OT, but when they do they will receive Dining Reward Points on their OpenTable accounts. These are $20-50 certificates users can employ at the restaurants in OpenTable’s network.
Integration of food, reviews and reservations is commonsensical enough that this not an isolated incident, though it may be the most popular site to do it. The New York Times pointed out that Urban Spoon has created a reservation app called RezBook.
A customer-friendly move like this might do something to restore some of Yelp’s credibility. Its filtering system, which placed the most “trustworthy” reviews at the top of a company’s listings created a lot of suspicion and resulted in accusations of extortion.