Today, 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as word-of-mouth recommendations and close to 75 percent of customers choose a restaurant based on mobile search. If you’re a restaurant owner, it’s crucial that your business has online restaurant reviews. If you don’t, you could be losing a large portion of your business to a restaurant that does. Some owners fear bad reviews, but these are inevitable especially in the restaurant business.
Just last month, ChowNow, an online ordering platform for restaurants partnered with Google. Now customers can order directly from a restaurant’s Google profile through ChowNow. But before they do that, they’re going to want to read reviews.
Below we’ll explain why customer feedback is extremely valuable and we’ll explain how to use these views to advance your business.
The Positive Power of Social Media
Instagram and Snapchat are two of the most popular and fast growing social media platforms today. In regards to the restaurant industry, they’re essential tools customers use to share the latest and greatest places to eat. The reason for this is simple — no one is going to share a picture on their Instagram or Snap Story if they have a bad experience. In this post, we’ll focus on Instagram’s features since they have a sophisticated platform for business owners, that Snapchat currently lacks. But it’s important to be aware that restaurant goers and critics are sharing their experience informally via Snapchat.
This summer, Instagram for Business was released and if you’re a restaurant owner we definitely recommend creating a profile. This is a great opportunity for you to get noticed by restaurant critics and customers alike since it’s common for people to share pictures of their food online. If you have an Instagram profile for your business, customers can post a picture and tag you when they visit. Instagram also has an “Add Your Location” feature that is extremely popular among users. This connects to the address in your Facebook profile, allowing other users to see where you’re business is located.
Please note: you have to have a Facebook page to create an Instagram for Business profile since Facebook owns the latter.
Negative Restaurant Reviews
As a restaurant owner, it’s important to keep in mind that restaurant reviews are subjective. No matter how well you run your restaurant and train your staff, there will always be unhappy customers. Depending on how unsatisfied they are, they’ll probably write a blazing review to try to deter other customers. Use this as a learning opportunity for your business to improve upon, rather than a failure. If you receive an especially scathing review, it’s your responsibility as a business owner to respond to this. If a customer writes a negative review, they’ll likely be on Yelp, Google, Foursquare or TripAdvisor.
Focus on Feedback
If you’re a restaurant owner, we hope you have a better understanding of the value of reviews — both good and bad. They give valuable insight into your business for future customers while allowing you to learn and improve things internally.
In our next blog, we’ll discuss how restaurant owners can use Yelp, so make sure to subscribe!