Yelp’s CEO Explains How the Review Site Was Actually a Brilliant Mistake

yelp ceo Jeremy Stoppelman

Nothing is better for advertising than good word of mouth and this is exactly what Yelp does best. Trying to get someone who’s an avid Yelp user to try a restaurant without first reading the diner reviews is nearly impossible. The trades and services website has an incredibly strong influence on where many of us choose to eat and shop.

Would you believe though that the concept behind Yelp was actually a perfect mistake? The idea behind the site was to create a more user-friendly version of the online yellow pages, but as Yelp’s CEO tells Businessweek, they thought no consumer would be interested in writing their own reviews. Oh how wrong he was. It’s now one of the most popular apps and restaurants clamor to get a solid four or five star rating from Yelpers.

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