What: Shares of local business review specialist Yelp (NYSE:YELP) rose more than 11% Friday, despite a lack of material company-specific news.
So what: Keeping in mind Yelp stock still sits more than 40% lower than it started this year, it helps that the broader markets are up nicely today. And keep in mind only a few weeks ago, Yelp beat quarterly expectations on both revenue and adjusted earnings (it's still unprofitable on a GAAP basis, mind you) for the first time in 2015, helped by a 22% jump in monthly unique visitors to 89 million, a 40% increase in page views over the same year-ago period, and a 36% year-over-year increase in local ad revenue.
In addition, yesterday Yelp released the results of a survey stating 64% Americans plan to shop at local businesses this holiday season, including 69% of consumers age 18 to 34. And that's great for Yelp's platform as millions of people search online for information on where to shop as they're out and about. To be sure, Yelp CEO Jeremy Stoppelman confirmed 71% of all searches on Yelp are being conducted from mobile devices -- up from the 70% Yelp reported in the third quarter -- which should bode well for Yelp in its efforts to help these local businesses secure as large a slice of consumers' shopping budgets as possible.
Now what: So even if we can't pin Yelp's rise today on a single glaring catalyst, it's hardly surprising to see investors bidding up shares of the company as the 2015 holiday shopping season ramps. If Yelp can continue to capitalize on this burgeoning market going forward, I think the stock's gains today could be a blip compared to its long-term potential.