Every day millions of people turn to Yelp when making a decision about what to do, where to shop, and what to eat. 2020 was a year like no other, and while the vaccine has provided light at the end of the tunnel for the immediate future, we’ll continue to feel the palpable impact of COVID-19.
Yelp’s data science team used its review data from the more than 21 million new reviews over the past year to find words and phrases that were rising the most significantly between 2019 and 2020, in a manner indicative of further growth, to help predict what Yelpers will be looking for and writing about in 2021. The Yelp 2021 Trend Report says:
Value-Based Shopping: Yelp makes it easy for consumers to support businesses that align with their values. Searches for Black-owned businesses spiked 6,500%, and mentions of women-owned businesses in reviews are up 114% since last summer. In the year ahead, expect to see a continued shift to people shopping with their core values in mind.
- Open to All search rate is up over 15x
- Veteran-Owned search rate is up 57%
- Support Local search rate is up 209%
- Black-Owned search rate is up about 25x
- Women-Owned search rate is up about 50x 114%
- Latinx-Owned search rate is up more than 300x
Despite the importance of brick-and-mortar locations to the beauty industry, we’ve seen that beauty businesses have been resilient, with many pivoting to offer virtual consultations, mobile salon treatments like manicures and waxing, and to-go hair color kits, as they work to stay in business and continue to provide valuable services to their customers. COVID-19’s impact will continue to be seen as safety and cleanliness remain top of mind for service providers and clients alike.
1. DIY and At-Home Fails: Coronavirus quarantines upended beauty routines with the brave attempting their own hair maintenance, resulting in botched bangs, bad bleaching, and many at-home haircut fails. The rate of review mentions for color-correcting was up 29%.
2. Acne Treatment: Irritation caused by face masks, poor dietary choices, increased screen time, and elevated stress levels can lead to skin irritation and inflammation. Hormonal acne and maskne were top searches, with the rate of review mentions for hormonal acne up 104%.
3. Melasma Treatments: With people spending more time on devices working from home this year and increased awareness of blue light skin damage, the rate of review mentions for melasma was up 58%. Yelp predicts many will seek help from local dermatologists to manage the condition in 2021.
4. Safety Protocols: As salons reopened with new safety protocols, many salons adapted by offering services outdoors and offered new protocols like temperature checks, plexiglass dividers, and digital check-in to maintain the health and safety of customers and employees alike. Safety protocols will remain a priority for many next year. Nearly 80,000 beauty businesses have adopted features on their Yelp business pages showing that they are taking safety measures to protect consumers against COVID-19.
5. The Rise of Zoom Face: Weeks of looking at ourselves on video-conferencing calls has taken a toll on the minds of many, and concerns of “Zoom Face” are on the rise. Yelpers flocked to the platform to investigate elective, cosmetic procedures to help address their concerns like crow’s feet, jawline filler, and nose jobs. Similarly, consumer interest in plastic surgery rose 20% as many take advantage of newfound time at home to help heal. Next year, we foresee more nip/tuck transformations.
Photo: Kate Trifo via Unsplash