How to Deal with Bad Restaurant Reviews

Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

Unhappy dinersThe disgruntled customer: it’s an eventuality every restaurant will have to face. For one reason or another, every establishment encounters a patron who has a bad experience and who takes their complaints to the Internet review site of their choice. Whether it’s Yelp or TripAdvisor, these reviews carry real weight in a world where 81% of smartphone users said they used their smartphones to compare restaurants before choosing a place to eat (according to an NRN survey). That’s why it is truly to a restaurant’s advantage to learn how best to handle bad online reviews. In fact, if done correctly, restaurants can even turn negative press into positive marketing. Here are 5 steps to dealing with bad online reviews of your restaurant.

1. Keep Tabs on Your Reviews

The first step in handling negative reviews is to know what people are saying about you. While, yes, it is easier to stick your head in the sand and believe everything is peachy keen, it’s better to accept that people are probably talking about your restaurant. And the fact is, it’s better to know what they’re saying. Search Yelp, Urbanppoon, LocalEats, TripAdvisor, Zagat,, and other review sites and mobile apps to find your restaurant and read comments and stories from reviewers. You may also receive reviews on Twitter or Facebook if your restaurant is active on social media.


How to Improve Your Restaurant’s Website for Better Business

Monday, July 22nd, 2013

Want to keep your kitchens and your restaurant equipment busy? If your restaurant is not online yet, you’re probably missing out on a big opportunity to improve business for your restaurant. Equipment and quality service aren’t the only things it takes to keep customers coming back. Being able to locate your restaurant online is a major avenue for new customers learn about it, and often how they ultimately choose to venture there for the first time. If you’re thinking about redesigning your restaurant to get to your restaurant equipment back in commission, there are a few things you should know first.

Here are some basic dos and don’ts when it comes to building a better website for your restaurant.

Do: Get to Know Your Customers

When redesigning your website, ask yourself: Why do your customers use your website? Is it to find your locations? To view your menu? To order food online? To give feedback about their experience? To find catering information? Tend to those needs first and foremost when reconstructing your website.

Don’t: Make Your Site More Complicated

A surplus of pages and graphics are not the mark of an upscale business. In fact, sometimes the websites that offer the simplest user experience are the most helpful. Be sure that your website is efficient and easy to navigate. Just like good restaurant equipment, you want a website that gives the customer a quality product quickly so that they are most likely to come back again.

Do: Show Off Your Social Media

If you already have accounts for your restaurant on outlets like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, give your customers a way to navigate to those profiles from your homepage, and vice-versa. The more ways users can encounter your website and find information, the better.

Don’t: Ignore Your Phone

In a survey by Nation’s Restaurant News of about 1,500 smartphone users, 81% said they had used their phones to search for a restaurant in the last six months, and 84% said they also compared restaurants before choosing. While it’s a good idea, but not absolutely necessary, to create an app for your restaurant, you should at least optimize your site for mobile. Smartphone users will have an easier time navigating it and making a decision about where to eat. And speed isn’t just a matter of convenience; 62% of users said they were less likely to choose a restaurant if its website was difficult to read on a phone.

More Tips and Restaurant Equipment from ShortOrder

For more tips on running a successful restaurant, news about quality restaurant equipment, and more keep reading What’s Cooking.

What do you wish you could find on other restaurants’ websites? What restaurant equipment do you use most? Connect with ShortOrder on Twitter and Facebook and tell us about your experiences with marketing and restaurant equipment!

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