Yelp‘s Waitlist feature was released in 2017, giving users the ability to join seating wait lists at participating restaurants from within the Yelp mobile application or by using its website. Now, the feature has been updated to support larger party sizes and to allow users to specify seating preferences they may have.
With this update, Yelp Waitlist now supports party sizes of six or larger. Users can specify their party size as they begin searching for a restaurant, which will allow Yelp to show them approximate waiting times based on the number of people in their group.
Users now have the option to tell a restaurant their seating preference when they join a wait list. Restaurants can set different options, such as “booth,” “outdoor” and “bar,” based on what they have available. If someone is willing to share a table with another guest, they can also indicate this, which may reduce waiting time.
Elsewhere, Yelp’s Notify Me feature is now rolling out to users on Android and the web. Previously released on iOS, Notify Me allows users to schedule a reminder about joining a wait list. In a blog post, Guang Yang, group product manager for Yelp Reservations and Waitlist, said the Notify Me feature has sent “nearly 250,000” reminders to iOS users since December 2019.
Yang said Yelp’s reservation and Waitlist features helped seat nearly 250,000 diners via Yelp on Valentine’s Day 2020, more than double the previous year’s total, adding that 3.3 million diners were seated via Yelp in December 2019—Yelp’s best month ever—and that more than 1 million diners were seated during New Year’s week (December 30 to January 5).