Right after hearing about some of Yelp’s new milestones last week, I received a note from Qype head of marketing Andrew Hunter about its recent growth. Specifically, the site has reached 14 million monthly unique visitors and has added Italy to its roster of countries.
This will include an authentic Italian site with local reviews it has already begun to seed, as well as a localized version of its Qype Radar mobile application. Starting from scratch in a new region is a challenge for local review sites because there is a clear network effect that drives their value. There is also a classic chicken-and-egg dynamic between the number of reviews and number of users.
In this respect, Qype has a leg up on Yelp, which has already made the move across the pond. Qype’s established base in Europe — especially London and its birthplace of Hamburg — allows it to grow virally in the region. This involves a stepping-stone approach that moves from city to nearby city, while utilizing the cross-pollination of people across these borders. Yelp has gone with a similar strategy within the U.S.
Overall, Italy is the 10th market for Qype to enter and joins its 15,000 towns and cities in the U.K., Ireland, Germany, France, Spain, Austria, Switzerland, Poland and Brazil. Overall the site has 350,000 active users and about a million total reviews.
Related: Our last conversation with Hunter can be found here.