Running a restaurant is no small task. From the bustling kitchen to satisfying clients with both their food and excellent customer service, to also managing a reputation and trying to gain positive reviews. It is hectic.
With all of this, the last thing your restaurant needs is a negative review or a bad reputation that can heavily impact cash flow and getting new customers. This means your online reviews matter and just so you understand how much, let’s view the evidence.
In a recent survey by TripAdvisor, it was found that 94% of US diners are influenced by online reviews – 94% is almost everyone.
In another study by Harvard, it was discovered that a one-star increase led to a 9% revenue increase for restaurants. There was a 5-9% increase in revenue for every star added.
So, you see for every restaurant business there is ample reason to literally keep your eye on the stars.
It might be difficult to manage an online reputation and the happenings of the restaurant at the same time. But the fact is the two work hand in hand. It is usually one big cycle.
A customer comes into your restaurant and gets an impressive service starting with your staff’s approach to the food or drink. Next, you probably mention leaving a review online and the client does just that. Other prospects searching for a restaurant find many positive reviews like this and after considering other factors, they most likely end up in your restaurant. The cycle begins again.
What your customers are looking for online
- Top-rated restaurant: All your customers want to know that their favorite restaurant comes highly rated. Pursue a local, national, or regional award to add a solid extra appeal to your name.
- Restaurants nearby and restaurants who offer incentives: This is where your local SEO comes in. To make customers find you irresistible add an incentive to the mix.
- Great photos: Not the photos themselves, but what the photos carry. Use images that show the best of your restaurant. Show the clean space, delicious-looking meals, or even other happy customers enjoying a meal.
What your reviews will contain
If you pay close attention, online reviews show you where you need to make improvements and where you need to keep up the good work. Client’s reviews for restaurants usually include comments on:
- Customer service
- The atmosphere
- Food quality
When negative reviews hit?
You are a restaurateur and that comes with some advantage. Ask your staff if they know anything about the customer’s experience. Acknowledge the issue and promise to do better. Remember that when you respond to a negative review, you are not just responding to the customer in question, but you are also speaking to every prospect who may read the review before making a decision. Never seem incompetent.
Make the extra effort to always share your positive reviews or those that stand out. Protect your reputation. Yummy food pictures are a must for a restaurant, don’t hold back on them either.