It’s become clear that online reviews play an important role in whether a restaurant succeeds or fails. Yelp, TripAdvisor and food bloggers greatly impact the way people look at your restaurant. The opinions of strangers can influence whether or not they’ll go the extra step to visit after reading a review, but this reality doesn’t mean that restauranteurs need to shudder at the very mention of a five-star rating system.
Instead, restaurant owners should consider online reviews an exciting opportunity to gain valuable feedback about their food, service, and establishment. After all, we can all agree that AMissedOpportunity.Sucks, so leverage your .SUCKS domain as a forum for feedback.
Create a Centralized Feedback Platform
People have opinions and online they only seem to get even louder. You may already use a service like Google Alerts to keep tabs on your establishment’s online mentions, but by employing your own .SUCKS domain you are creating a centralized platform that not only welcomes but solicits feedback about your brand.
Additionally, to invite feedback directly, you can minimize the negative effects of angry customers turning to third party review platforms. There, you can encourage them to engage in a conversation with your brand. After all, it’s always better to have someone talk about you to your face rather than behind your back.
Shamelessly Shop for Reviews
Did you know that 67% of consumers are influenced by reviews, both good and bad? That’s why it’s important for restaurants to start valuing reviews. After all, review websites are not just a platform for angry voices—happy people are loud and proud in online forums too.
Leave a review or survey opportunity on the end of the customer receipts, or go a step further and provide a thank you note with the check that explicitly asks the customer to share their experience online. You can even remind those customers who are subscribed to your email newsletter list or who follow you on social media to provide a review.
Going that extra mile to actively solicit good reviews could prove to be very worth your while if you’re able to convince even a few customers to share their positive experience online.
Address Both Positive and Negative Reviews
With every negative review you receive, it is important to address the issue head on. Sometimes this means replying to a comment, other times it comes to offering further service to disgruntled patrons.
Be sure to leave information for these consumers to get in contact with your restaurant directly, an act which will not only show the customer that you are taking their complaint or concern seriously, but it will also take the conversation offline so that any further negative comments are not visible to the public.
These types of conversations can be difficult for a restaurant manager to have, but they are absolutely vital for dealing with customer feedback. Reviews—even the bad ones—can help you learn and grow as a business and help you improve your customer service. Even the best restaurants get bad reviews sometimes, so don’t get discouraged—get proactive.
However, it is also just as important to acknowledge positive reviews. Thank happy customers for taking the time to leave feedback and promise to share their message with the service staff that made their experience memorable. Whether the review is good or bad, you want to demonstrate that you are listening and taking action.
In today’s digital world of online reviews, restaurants need to step up their game in order to attract new and returning customers. You can nail food, service and location, but without addressing online feedback you could still fall flat.
Investing in a .SUCKS domain can help your restaurant conquer the world of digital criticism by creating a productive platform for commentary and conversation. Reviewers want to be heard, so let them know you’re all ears.
BadFood.Sucks—so let consumers know that you are willing to go the extra mile. Use a custom .SUCKS domain to glean valuable information about your patrons.
Photo Credits: Shutterstock / Jacob Lund, Shutterstock / Dragon Images, Shutterstock / mavo