Yahoo! To Form Partnership With Yelp To Improve Search Results : WSJ

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( - Yahoo! Inc. ( YHOO ) will form partnership with reviews provider Yelp Inc. to improve search results and draw users, the wall Street Journal reported citing a person familiar with matter.

A partnership between the Internet portal and the online-review siteâ€"which Chief Executive Marissa Mayer unveiled at an employee meeting Fridayâ€"will incorporate Yelp's listings and reviews of local businesses into results on Yahoo's search engine, said a person who attended the meeting. The new feature will be made available in the coming weeks, the Journal quoted a person.

The paper noted that surfacing more content from around the Web, such as Yelp's local listings, could help Yahoo differentiate from Microsoft Corp.'s ( MSFT ) Bing, its partner in search, and compete with Google Inc. (GOOG).

Data about local businesses has become an important part of search engines and other online services as consumers rely on smartphones to navigate the physical world. Microsoft recently struck a deal with mobile check-in software maker Foursquare. Previously, Yelp has done similar content partnerships with Microsoft and Apple Inc. ( AAPL ) which shows local business listings, reviews and photos on its mobile mapping software.

The terms of the Yahoo-Yelp deal couldn't be determined,Journal reported.

Yahoo is part of a search pact with Microsoft, signed in 2010, that executives close to Mayer have described as a disappointment. Under the deal, Microsoft gets 12% of the revenue Yahoo generates from search ads appearing next to search results. Yahoo is unlikely to get out of its contract with Microsoft until at least 2015, the midpoint of the 10-year agreement, when either party is permitted to opt out.

In December, Yahoo claimed 10.8% of the search market, compared with Google's 67.3% and Microsoft's 18.2%, according to comScore.

When Mayer led search at Google, She was involved in the company's attempt to buy Yelp for at least $500 million in 2009.

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This article appears in: News Headlines

Referenced Stocks: AAPL , GOOGL , MSFT , YELP , YHOO

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