Yelp just reported its fourth quarter earnings and things aren’t looking that sunny for the stalwart local discovery site. In Q4 Yelp raked in $41.2 million in revenue, losing $.08 cents per share for a net loss of $5.3 million, an outlook a bit grimmer than projected losses of $.03 per share. Still, the company exceeded analyst estimates, which pegged the Yelp to report $40.2 million in revenue. The company’s stock predictably dipped in after-hours trading by around 3%.
Yelp should own local. But it doesn’t. The company, founded in the mobile dark age of 2004, is being assaulted on some major fronts. There’s Foursquare of course, but the biggest threat is Facebook’s renewed interest in local, which the company will be building out in the coming months in the form of a feature called « Nearby. »
Nearby is a big threat to Foursquare too, if Facebook doesn’t fumble the reboot. You might recall Facebook Places, which was shuttered in 2011, well before Facebook commanded the mobile savvy and the mobile products that it does now.
Still, Yelp did have a little good news: Its web portal hit 100 million unique visitors in January 2013. The company also reported that reviews were up 45% in 2012 and its reach on mobile devices grew by 60%. (You can find more Yelp stats in the infographic below.)
The heat is on to see who can monetize mobile the fastest – but clearly Yelp just isn’t quite there yet.