Every restaurant owner knows that good reviews boost foot traffic to their restaurants while bad ones can close them down. This is especially true in this time and age when just about anyone can be an online critic. In fact, ratings have now become one of the cornerstones of success for restaurants and cafes.
At one point in our collective experience of having the Internet around, we were never really sure how important star ratings were but today, with sites like Tripadvisor, Yelp, and Toptable, star ratings are now front and center when it comes to online reviews. These reviews have an important place in every prospective customer’s decision journey. Its effects on a business’ profit and on the final purchase intention of a consumer are both interesting and expected.
Perhaps the most important consideration that every restaurant owner should keep in mind is the number of people who use online reviews to make purchasing decisions. Your customers are online all the time. When they look for directions to your restaurant Google shows them reviews, when they search for you on their phone, Google shows them your reviews.
Study After Study Shows The Link Between Good Reviews and Business Success
A study titled “The Effect of Online Reviews on the Review Attitude and Purchase Intention” done by Nicky Somohardjo submitted to Erasmus University Rotterdam in May 2017 reveals that reviews affect purchase intention.
Work done by Professors Jeremy Magruder and Michael Anderson of the University of California, Berkeley attempts to measure the relationship between consumer purchasing decisions and online star ratings.The two professors concentrated on the positive effects of good online ratings with 300 restaurants in San Francisco as the subjects of their study. Magruder and Anderson found that restaurants that have improved ratings by half a star were more likely to get more foot traffic during peak hours. To further establish this correlation, the two professors wrote that an extra half-star rating resulted to an increased number of 7pm bookings between 30 to 40 percent.
improved ratings by half a star were more likely to get more foot traffic during peak hours. To further establish this correlation, the two professors wrote that an extra half-star rating resulted to an increased number of 7pm bookings between 30 to 40 percent.
They wrote, “The findings of this study demonstrate that – although social media sites and forums may not generate the financial returns for which investors yearn – they play an increasingly important role in how consumers judge the quality of goods and services.”
Quick tips for improving your Reviews and your Foot Traffic.
- Solicit feedback from your diners.
- Act on the feedback to improve your business and your customers experience.
- Get happy customers to leave reviews. Yelp frowns on this so send your customers to the more fair minded review sites like Google.
- Use Check-in Deals on YELP to get good Yelp Reviews. Customer who check in with YELP are more likely to leave a review. If you have not fixed your restaurant’s services issues, refer to point #2 before doing this.
Review Fire helps you manage the feedback and review request process as well giving a single screen to see all your important reviews from across the web.