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Yelp Pushes Into the Local Delivery Space

yelp-logoYelp, the online listings and reviews company, launched a new product on Tuesday that will enable customers to receive items delivered locally from partner companies.

The service will begin with local food delivery in San Francisco, through partnerships with Eat24 and Delivery.com, which will include 100 local food establishments.

“The actual transaction happens on Yelp,” CEO Jeremy Stoppelman said, announcing the service at VentureBeat’s MobileBeat conference in San Francisco. So, for example, to order food, a customer can look up a particular restaurant on Yelp, order an item and pay for it to be delivered, without having to leave the site.

The food-delivery option rolling out this week is the first vertical in a new Yelp Platform that the company hopes will allow it to expand from reviews and offers into handling complete transactions. Other categories will follow, Stoppelman said.

The move is akin to a number of local goods and delivery service startups, a market growing increasingly crowded with the likes of Seamless and GrubHub, though eventually with a wider scope. Stoppelman likened it to bringing Amazon’s one-click shopping to local goods and services.

“You don’t really have a one-click equivalent in local,” he said.

There are, however, some options outside of food for same-day delivery services in local markets, which Yelp seems to be emulating but expanding upon. Google is piloting a “shopping express” service in the Bay Area, for instance, currently focused only on goods, not services.

Separately, Stoppelman was asked about the fact that, in searches, Google sometimes surfaces results from its own Zagat ahead of Yelp content on Android.

Stoppelman said that has been the case for awhile, and that he has spoken to some U.S. government officials about the issue.

“We’ve certainly registered our complaints,” he said.

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