How much does it cost to develop an App like Yelp or Nearby

Searching for places is now easier than ever. There are many predefined places like restaurants, salons, ATMs, Hotels, bus stop and many more. You can Search even by place name and it shows all the details about the search place like Contact detail, Ratings, User Reviews, and Images. Users can see reviews of other users and can post their own reviews according to their experience.

Also read: How to Develop a Business Directory App like Yelp?

What is Yelp or Nearby

Yelp was launched in 2004, it has over 142 million users. Yelp headquarters is in San Francisco, California.

Nearby is a location-based social networking service. It previously named WNM Live which means: Who’s Near Me. Nearby was founded by Brian Hamachek and located in Palo Alto, California. The company name was changed from WNM Live to Nearby in December 2014.

These apps help users to find local businesses among various business categories like the hotel, saloon, petrol pumps, restaurant or shop on the basis of other users’ reviews and ratings.

These application uses geolocation to show the list of nearby businesses. Users can filter the search results or define a specific business category as markets, shops, spa, and cafes. The app allows the sorting of the search results by distance, price, and ratings. When a user search for a place, it shows business address, phone number, working hours, and visitors’ review of this place.

These applications can run on IOS and Android.

Key features of an app like Yelp or nearby

User profile: It includes all of the user data like reviews, photos, places visited by the users and a list of their favorite places.

Social login: This feature enables users to log in with social media accounts like Facebook. With the help of this feature, people can start using the app faster by skipping the registration process.

Newsfeed: In this feature, users can check a list of previous activities, news, and notifications.

Location-based search: It allows users to find the nearest businesses and restaurants using the geolocation on their mobile devices.

Photo/video uploading. In this feature, users can share their photos and videos in their reviews.

Reviews and ratings: The reviews and rating feature allows users to add reviews and rate the businesses they have visited.

Filter: In this feature, the app sorts the search results according to Price, Delivery, Offering a Deal, and Distance.

How can you make a successful app 

Find a target location

You have to compete with big players if you choose a popular target market. Look at other popular review sites, targeting different audiences and analyze how they vary and what they have in common.

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Focus on user experience

When building the app, always bear in mind users and their needs.

Because online directories apps are mainly used to find businesses and services. So a user-friendly search is required for your app. Things to do to make your app user-friendly:

  • Make the search box clearly visible
  • Guide users with clear copy
  • Provide search suggestions
  • Store recent searches
  • Consider voice search

Gamify the app

Gamification is an effective tool for engaging and motivating users. It helps to encourage users to write reviews and also entertains them.

Ways to gamify an app:

  • One way to gamify an app is to offer badges to users to highlight their accomplishments. For a number of reviews left or places visited, badges can be issued.
  • Providing a ranking system to inspire those who like to compete is another way to gamify an app.

How much does it cost to create an app like Yelp or Nearby

Well, the cost to develop a location-based app is depends on its platform and what features you want to add in your application. It also depends on your developer’s location. According to me, it can be like that:

In the U.S. and Western Europe:  $50 to $250 per hour, 

And in Eastern Europe, it will cost you around $30 to $150 per hour.

So, it would cost you somewhere around $3000-$15000.


Nowadays, people like to visit new places and share their experiences with other people. That’s Why online directories are popular and will remain in the future.

So, to develop an app like Yelp or Nearby is a good idea for your startups. If you are looking for a development team for your project, then we are here to help you. We have great experience in building mobile applications and websites.

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