Yelp Clone on Rails

I am thinking about building a Yelp clone for a large city in a developing country (my startup dream). Is there an existing Rails sample code base that I can use to start from, e.g., one where the standard Yelp features such as posting reviews, and searching for businesses based on location have been implemented?

Because I have only coded for fun, my little coding experience has been limited to a social networking Rails 3.0 project that I did a couple of years ago. I love Rails and would like to continue to develop my Rails skills.

I don’t want to start from scratch in this Yelp clone project. However, Googling “Yelp clone” returns only PHP packages. See . The most popular is a commercial WordPress theme. See . All of its features look very appealing. It looks like the fastest way to going live. But I have never done anything in PHP. Furthermore, I am skeptical of commercial ready-made solutions where I will probably not be able to customize its code to do exactly what I want. See disadvantages of using commercial packages at . For example, I want to have Yelp’s " Redo search when map moved " feature .

WordPress makes things look too easy. I guess making a good Yelp clone cannot be that easy. Otherwise, someone else would have done it in that city. Actually, the city already has a number of business review sites. But they all suck. In a way, I am somewhat glad that it is not that easy. Otherwise, I would not have an opportunity to make a really outstanding Yelp clone with Rails. But time is of the essence. Hopefully, I can go live, and build up a good review database and name recognition before Yelp itself jumps into the city.

Do you think Rails would be a good fit for this project as opposed to WordPress? Is there a free Rails sample project I should use as a starting point for this project to speed up development?

Thank you for your input.


What you’re looking to build here is a fairly complicated web app with, presumably, a lot of custom taxonomy (sorting things by area of business, neighbourhood, etc) - a large, document-driven app. This is definitely something you’d be better off using a framework like Rails for, rather than Wordpress. (Approximately 99% of WP nightmares, in my experience, come from custom post types and the workarounds necessary to do things other than your basic blogs; unless that theme does EXACTLY what you want, I would predict a world of pain.)

That said, it sounds to me like a pretty big job, and I wouldn’t expect to be finished with it overnight, especially if it’s just you and your computer on the job. There are undoubtedly loads of gems out there that will speed things along, however - I will defer to the rest of this group for suggestions, as I am fairly new to Rails myself.



I was looking to do something similar and I ran into this.

I am new to Ruby on rails too. Maybe we colloborate and learn to use this together.

Hey I am building this opensourced project, it is not a Yelp clone in fact I just found out about Yelp,but it shares a lot of features now that I look at it. I have been working on it for 3 months now and it is my first rails project.

I would post my repo here but I dont want people to just clone it and leave me out of it. Just put too much work for it :stuck_out_tongue: , if you are interested message me

James, Thank you very much for your response. Rails sounds like the way to go.