Intuit has purchased BooRah, a rating and review site, and will add its functionality to the Intuit small business platform, which has also incorporated the old StepUp e-commerce site and Homestead Web site construction services. The companies aren’t talking much about the deal, which closed yesterday.
BooRah had changed strategy from its early days, moving away from a reliance on powering alternative weeklies and toward building up its own site, and syndicating its content. InfoUSA and Kosmix.com, for instance, have integrated BooRah reviews into their offerings.
The company has also been adding promotional offers in the form of contextual ads from Entertainment.com, ValPak and Restaurant.com. Recently, it unveiled a restaurant reputation package, which charged restaurants $14.95 to find reviews and manage responses, and added smartphone access as well. The site has been serving 35 metro areas, including 14 that have been recently launched.
It can be said that BooRah pioneered semantic evaluations of whether reviews are positive or negative, and then counting up “votes.” But the semantic review field has become a crowded one recently, with such entrants as Marchex’s OpenList and Urbanspoon. All of them compete against mass sites such as Citysearch and Yelp.
(Thanks to Screenwerk for pointing out the BooRah announcement.)