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Food and Beverage 2015-06-02

Why Zomato closed Urbanspoon, drawing complete traffic to Zomato's app?

At the time of the acquisition, Zomato has already announced that the team will be working closely over the coming months to integrate Urbanspoon into Zomato.

By Deputy Features Editor
Why Zomato closed Urbanspoon, drawing complete traffic to Zomato's app?

Zomato, the restaurant search engine which acquired Urbanspoon, the US based restaurant discovery site in January this year, has closed the website drawing complete traffic to Zomato’s app.

After six months of the acquisition, the food service company has declared on its blog that Urbanspoon is becoming Zomato for good, and while all restaurant and user information has been migrated over from Urbanspoon to Zomato, a few things look and work differently. Here’s a rundown of what’s changed.

At the time of the acquisition, Zomato has already announced that the team will be working closely over the coming months to integrate Urbanspoon into Zomato.

“In due course of time, all Urbanspoon traffic will move to, and all Urbanspoon app users will be able to use the Zomato app. This acquisition also has a lot to offer to restaurant businesses. Zomato's hyperlocal advertising model, combined with Zomato for Business app suite, will allow restaurant businesses to reach out to, connect with, and engage customers like never before,” said Deepinder Goyal, CEO and Founder, Zomato.

Here’s a rundown of what has changed after the merger:

The rating system: Urbanspoon had a like or Dislike voting system, but Zomato uses a 5-point rating scale. And now, the percentage scores from Urbanspoon have been translated into 5-point scores on Zomato, and Likes/Dislikes from users’ profiles have been moved over to Zomato as ‘Positive’ and 'Negative’.

A wide variety of choice:  Urbanspoon being a bigger company in the game, the most important thing it brought to Zomato is the user base. Adding to all the existing locations on Urbanspoon where company had its presence, customers can now explore restaurants in 22 countries globally. There are over 1 million restaurants to choose from in 10,000+ cities.

The review system: Zomato allows only one review per user per restaurant. Why?  Because it believes that the most recent experience one had at a restaurant is the most relevant one. And now, multiple reviews for the same restaurant from Urbanspoon have been merged into one, broken down by date of submission.

The personal food journey: This timeline helps customers keep track of all the places they eat at, with chronologically sorted reviews, photos, and check-ins. Scroll through it anytime they want to relive their foodie memories. Also, the check-ins from your Dineline will appear as 'Been There’ on Zomato.



Including Bookmarks: All Wishlists and Favourites  have been moved to Zomato as Bookmarks, which one can find on your profile page. On the desktop site, Bookmarks can be filtered by city so customer knows what’s around them, and find what they are looking for even quicker.

Leaderboards: Leaderboards on Zomato help identify the most prolific contributors in a city. A review or blog post on Zomato earns 25 points, while every photo uploaded earns 2. Leaderboard positions (and defended) depending on points earned in the past six months. We also have a separate leaderboard for bloggers, and one’s position on that depends on how many restaurants one has written posts for with Spoonbacks.

Login-only apps: Unlike Urbanspoon, the Zomato app requires one to log in to be able to personalise and customise the product experience. This includes trusted recommendations from friends and Bookmarks for easy access. And since this has been a point of concern, Zomato takes security and personal information seriously.

And as Urbanspoon has a huge following, and is home to legions of people who are as passionate about food, Zomato plans to integrate the two products to bring the best of both products to our users in the United States as well as the rest of the world.

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