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Foreign Creatures

Snociety: Handling Yelp Reviews

restaurantJessicaComment
Yelp Reviews.jpg

One of the hardest things for me so far is Yelp. I loved Yelp like to the MAX. I would use it to find the best restaurants, I would take every review to consideration, and I would swipe thru all 432 photos at a restaurant. BUT NOW I HATE YELP. It's like the worse thing to a restaurant owner. Kind of. I love the 5 star reviews and the many compliments. But then there's those 3 stars or those reviews that comment on wrong orders, long lines, bad process, portion control, and unhappy employees. It's true though...we mess up orders, we don't always have good customer service, and we can't control long lines to the bathroom. But this is where I need to learn to be kind and loving.

So here are 3 things to consider when answering Yelp reviews.

  1. Don't get emotional
    Yelpers tend to make negative reviews as soon as they can because their experience was just that horrible. You don't see as many Yelpers posting positive reviews right away. But when a customer is mad, they go straight to social media and Yelp. It's easy to take things personal and get upset. It's easy for me to be defensive and to want to say how I truly feel but it's not good to fight back. I have to remember that I need to show grace. If it's difficult to read a bad review, come back to it later when you're feeling a lot stronger and when you feel confidence in the work you do.
  2. Yelpers do not always speak on behalf of the community
    Not everyone has Yelp and neither does everyone go to Yelp to rave or complain. There is a chance that the Yelper is not the only person who feels happy about your food or feels upset that an order was taking too long to get to them. At first, we did take every review into consideration. One Yelper said we put too much rice, so then we told all our employees to put less rice. Then 2 weeks later a Yelper said that we didn't put enough rice. So it's really a balance of which reviews to consider and to make a judgment based on your business...not others. And our current solution is weighing our rice to make sure the proportions are correct and consistent. Ever since we started this shop, we answered all reviews either privately or publicly because we want them to know that they are heard. We want them to know that there are people behind our restaurant establishment.
  3. Read, learn, and improve
    Whether the review is positive or negative, we affirm the Yelper and thank them for their visit. We also tell them that we take everything they say into consideration...which we do! It's very important to listen to your customers but remember, do it with caution. You need to learn to do what is best for your business. For example, we switched from plastic bowls to eco-friendly bowls. It seemed like a great choice because it's good for the environment! However, the paper bowls absorbed the sauce and was a bit harder to eat out of. Instead of reverting back to our plastic bowls, we placed wax paper on top of the bowl so the sauce wouldn't get to the bottom. It's still a bit harder to eat, but as a business, we still believe switching to our new bowls were the right choice. It was also cheaper to get these paper bowls than the plastic ones! Surprising huh?