How to Deal with Negative Restaurant Reviews?

How to Deal with Negative Restaurant Reviews?

What is the factor that influences a diner’s decision-making process while searching for a restaurant? Several studies have examined that social media and online review impact on customer restaurant selection process and the following attributes are food quality, services, the atmosphere, and price.

Related Read: Top 10 Restaurant Social Media Marketing Tips (Trending)

Did you know?

65% of negative reviews are posted on social media within 24 hours of a bad dining experience taking place? Managing social media reputation is one of the important factors to make a restaurant business successful.

How customer’s review influence people to visit a Restaurant –

70% of people choices are influenced by online reviews, that is why becoming proactive to review especially the bad one is important.

“Study Found that 44.6% of consumers are more likely to visit if the owner self manages negative online reviews”

Almost 70% of people admitted that they visit a restaurant again that offered good customer service.

Here I am sharing an approach which is a five-step process, which is discovered by Disney Institute, you can easily remember with the word – H.E.A.R.D:

1. Hear

Due to faster internet growth, the online presence of people are usually 24*7, They respond quickly when it is a matter of negative reviews. In such cases, try to solve the issue of the customer as soon as possible because 94% of Diners select a Restaurant Based on Online Reviews.

The customer feels good if the manager/ head of the restaurant directly listens to their problems and solve them, it increases the chances of customer retention in the restaurant. So to the very first start with listing the problem, Here’s how you can start –

Hi Mr.John,
I’m Peter, the senior manager of the Restaurant. We are sorry for the inconvenience. Please share your concern with us.

how to respond to negative online reviews


Showing empathy is one of the most critical customer service skills that one should possess while handling bad reviews.

Make your customer feel that you have emotions for them. Try to take this issue offline by asking their contact details.

For example –
“We strongly apologize for the trouble that you have experienced with us”


Don’t personally react to a negative review. Apologize in a professional way. Don’t make excuses and react arrogantly, this impact on developing customer loyalty. just react with politely in a manner. If one of customer’s posted negative reviews on social media, don’t start arguments on the same platform.

Don’t go directly with monetary compensation. According to Carey School of Business at Arizona State University that only 37% of customers were satisfied when they were offered something of monetary value but when business compensate the people with an apology, satisfaction percentage was double to 74%.

Example –


Do it quickly, as soon as possible. The more time you take the more time you give your online viewers to criticize and discuss on the topic, make sure you have empowered your staff to perform.

If you haven’t an idea what to offer or how to compensate, you can simply ask – What we can do for you to make this right sir? Build an emotional connection between you can your customer.
Below I am sharing an example of responding to negative reviews on social media –

Responding politely and positively to customer’s complains increases the chances of re-visits. It also boosts the rate of customer Retention which is a key factor in business growth.

Read – Why Customer Retention is Important for Restaurant?


This is the major part of the complete process. Making sure that the same mistake or issue don’t happen again!

For this, one should go for a Restaurant Customer Feedback App or software helps to get real-time feedback from customers.

If you are asking for feedback directly this would reduce the chances of writing negative online reviews on social media and other food delivery services in India.

how to deal with negative online reviews


A restaurant manager should handle online bad reviews by keeping these points in the eye as positive and negative online reviews act as reputation enhancers.

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