How to Respond to Bad Restaurant Reviews

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A confused woman unhappy about her food order

Approximately 94% of diners consult internet reviews to determine where to eat. Therefore, it is essential to give online reviews the attention they deserve. 

This attention to online reviews should also extend towards bad reviews, which every restaurant at some point or the other has to deal with. 

A poor response to a bad restaurant review can result in one of the following incidents:

  1. The customer takes a screenshot of your aggressive reply, ]t likely written in a condescending t]
  2. The review is circulated on third-party websites that maintain B2B ratings.
  3. The customer can also share the review on social media pages. If it goes viral, that’s another case of bad PR to deal with.

Here are some steps on how to respond to a bad restaurant review:

Personalize Your Response 

Begin your reply with a customized address, which might be as easy as addressing the reviewer by their listed name. 

You may make the answer even more personalized by including detailed information from the reviewer’s experience.

This demonstrates that your message isn’t generic but that you value every customer who walks through the door, purchases a meal to go, or orders from your restaurant online.

Thank Them for Their Feedback

Even if the review was negative, you should thank the person who took the time to write it.

Such reviews allow you to improve your services while also identifying concerns you would not have seen otherwise.

Express Regret and Empathize 

It’s critical to treat your visitors with respect and to make them feel valued.

You want to show them that you understand their concerns by empathizing with them.

Customers want to apologize and be informed if their experience fell short of the restaurant’s traditional standards.

Nobody wants to eat at a restaurant that refuses to acknowledge its flaws, let alone compensate its customers for the trouble they were faced.

Mistakes can be made at any time, and it’s critical to accept responsibility for them.

Talk About The Solution 

When replying, include details about current attempts to enhance or improve the experience. Offering a complimentary item or meal, a refund, or a discount would be a sincere compensatory gesture.

You may say that you’re looking into methods to improve the customer experience of your restaurant if you don’t have any specific plans in the works. 

This isn’t merely an empty promise, as this damages a company’s relationship with its customers and its reputation.

Keep It Confidential 

To promote a private dialogue with the reviewer, include an email address or other contact information in your response.

This demonstrates that you’re prepared to devote as much time to resolve their issues.

Keeping the chat on a private communication channel such as Facebook inbox, Instagram direct message, or email can prevent things from spiraling out of hand on a public forum.

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