This article presents a thematic analysis of Yelp.com users’ motivations to read and articulate user-generated reviews. This study’s purpose was to identify factors of usage, trust, influence, and contribution of restaurant reviews on Yelp.com. This study found that information search reduction and community membership were the greatest factors encouraging Yelp.com use. Respondents reported trusting Yelp.com due to the community aspects of the website and felt they were able to sort out biased reviews easily. Lastly, the primary reasons for contributing reviews to Yelp.com were altruistic in nature, for example, helping other users make good purchase decisions and rewarding good businesses.
- social media
- user-generated restaurant reviews