Does the world need another local business/reviews site? AT&T seems to think so. Forbes says the company is planning to launch a Yelp competitor soon at Buzz.com. If nothing else, it’ll have a great domain name going for it.
But, a great domain or not, is any new site going to come along and even put a dent in Yelp’s armor at this point? (I think Twitter could if it steered itself in the direction of places pages/profiles for businesses, but that’s another story for some other day.) Yelp has been growing for years, and had a huge 2009: 26 million unique visitors in December 2009, up 60% from 16 million unique visitors in December 2008.
The article hints that there will be some differences between Yelp and Buzz, including something that sounds like a Q&A element that involves local experts. And this, too:
“On buzz.com, users won’t be writing full-fledged reviews. They can choose to “favorite” a business or not and write brief comments, but there isn’t a place for airing grievances.”
The article says Buzz will soon go into a testing phase for AT&T employees plus their family and friends. There’s also a form on the site now letting you request an invite … you know, if you think the world needs another local business/reviews site.
(more discussion about this on Techmeme)