Written by: J. Vigotsky
Today, many diners read online restaurant reviews before going out to eat. According to one study, 60 percent of people reference online reviews before deciding where to dine. Perhaps even more surprising, a Harvard Business School study found that a one-star bump in a restaurant’s Yelp rating leads to a 5-9% increase in revenue. This all points to the importance of leveraging online restaurant reviews. Especially for new restaurants and those located in touristy areas, Internet reviews can make or break a business. This post will focus on what owners can do to increase their number of online reviews.
Provide Excellent Service
Providing superior customer service is a surefire way to net some positive customer reviews. But the key is to truly go above and beyond. While most restaurants offer good service, it falls on you to do more. Patrons should leave your restaurant feeling like they want to share their amazing dining experience with the rest of the world. The best way to ensure your service leaves this kind of impression is by fostering a positive restaurant culture.
Don’t Be Afraid to Ask
Getting online restaurant reviews is largely a numbers game. The more customers you ask, the more likely it is that someone will leave a review. If you sense that a patron dining in your restaurant is likely to leave a positive review, go ahead and politely ask them. If you have an email list, try asking for reviews through there. But keep in mind that while asking is great, you never want to repeatedly solicit or pressure customers. Doing so makes you come off as desperate. And as a result, customers will be less likely to return to your restaurant in the future.
Make a Landing Page on Your Website
Featuring a testimonial page on your restaurant’s website is a great idea. But what you really want is a landing page that leads to popular review sites like Yelp, Tripadvisor, and Google Plus. This makes it easy for patrons to click a link and leave a review. And the easier you can make the review process, the more reviews you’re likely to get.
Engage in Social Media
If you’re already on Facebook and Twitter, make sure to provide links to pages that feature your restaurant reviews. And always try to keep an active account. One of the most common reasons people don’t leave reviews is because they forget. The easiest way to combat this issue is by maintaining an active social media account that shows up in customers’ feeds. If people forget to leave a review, your social media account will serve as a reminder.
Maintaining an online presence is more important than ever these days. By following the listed tips, you’ll be putting your restaurant in the best position to get more online restaurant reviews. And with enough positive reviews, more and more patrons will want to dine at your restaurant.