These days, the restaurant online reputation is all. Most consumers have access to the internet, and they are using it to check whether a certain restaurant fits the bill.

How do most consumers make a decision on where to eat? They pull out their smartphone or tablet and look for reviews and ratings.

If you’re the owner of a restaurant or bistro, the online world provides an excellent route to building a strong reputation that will lead to more customers at your eatery.

In this age of social media, a little outlay in the area of your restaurant’s online reputation can go a long way. A recent report states that just a small 1% increase in engagement with reviews can help with online reputation by increasing it up to 25%. The more you encourage digital word of mouth, the more you will gain.

For those who haven’t taken the plunge with setting up review profiles, it’s important to know that online reputations aren’t built from fake reviews. The first steps involve setting up profiles for your business on review sites such as Google or TripAdvisor and then responding to feedback received.

How to Improve Your Restaurant’s Online Reputation

Although there is a lot to be gained from having an online presence, there are also some risks involved. What people say now has an international audience, whereas before word of mouth would usually stay just within your town. It’s important to monitor comments and ensure that you retain a positive and clean reputation.

Here’s what we suggest you do to help your restaurant’s online reputation:

Request reviews

Some business owners don’t ask for reviews as they feel embarrassed. The best way to go about this is to add a sign on the bar or even just a line on the bottom of your receipts. You’re not asking for good reviews, you just want them to leave a review and it should be honest.

Follow Up

Whether a review is good or bad, it should be followed up and responded to. Not only will you encourage an open and honest channel of communication with your customers, but you’ll be able to receive valuable feedback about your performance.

Even if the review is less than positive, the reviewer should be thanked for their comments and assured that the feedback will be used to improve the service and offerings.

Create Incentives

Just as long as incentives are applied for both positive or negative reviews, you won’t be bribing anybody. You’re simply encouraging customers to share their thoughts on your establishment.

Your Restaurant’s Online Reputation

Maintaining a clean and positive reputation has never been so important than now. This era of internet reviews and social media have made this environment and it’s important that you run with it. Some restaurants even hire reputation managers to help them to keep it in good shape, however, you should be able to handle it yourself by keeping a close eye and adding responses.

A restaurant’s online reputation is of key importance and needs to be protected as one of it’s assets.