People care a lot about Google restaurant reviews. They trust them more than other stuff, like ambiance and food critics.
If you're looking for a certain type of food or a place to eat near you, you can just type it into Google, and Maps will show you the most popular options. This result is based on Google reviews, so a lot of restaurant owners try to get more out of reviews on Google every day to improve their SEO.
The top results have over 1,500 reviews, and they are the first thing you see when you search for the best restaurants in any location.
So, are Google restaurant reviews really that important? Yes, they are! And here's what you can do to get more out of them.
There are many review sites, but why should you focus on Google reviews for your restaurant?
Google is the most popular search engine, so it makes sense that Google reviews are widely read.
If you are craving Vietnamese food, you might simply type "Vietnamese restaurant" into Google. Google will show you the closest restaurants, but it will also show you the highest-rated Vietnamese restaurants. These reviews show up on the first page of Google because of the quality and quantity of the reviews.
Even if your restaurant doesn't have a large following or marketing budget, it can still rank high in search results with positive Google reviews.
If you don't set up your business on Google and start receiving reviews, you are missing out on a powerful marketing tool. The restaurant industry is competitive, so it's important to stand out.
You should still have a presence on other review platforms, but Google is the one to prioritize.
What Are Google Reviews?
Google Reviews is a way for people to share their experiences with businesses with other potential customers. When someone Googles any business, they can open the business's Google Profile, give it a rating from one to five stars, and leave a review.
Google Reviews are important because they give businesses feedback from customers. They let customers rate a restaurant based on their experience so businesses can easily find out what customers think of their food, service, and atmosphere. Reviews cover everything from the parking situation to how long it took the waiter to bring the check.
When a customer leaves a review, it shows up next to the business's listing on Google Maps, so people can read reviews before they go. These reviews help customers decide where to spend their money and what products or services to buy.
Why Google Reviews?
Google is the most popular and reliable search engine in the world. You may be reading this blog after a quick Google search! Google's credibility and importance are well-established, but why is it also a great review tool? Here are the top reasons:
Do you know that around 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations?
Provides information about customers' actual experiences: As soon as someone searches for your name online, one of the first things they will see is your Google reviews.
People are more likely to find your restaurant: Google search engine results typically combine your location proximity and Google ratings. Your ratings are aggregated from the reviews you receive on Google Maps for a specific location. Therefore, the better your reviews, the more likely people are to find your restaurant when they search for a specific location on Google.
Increase a restaurant's revenue: The better your Google reviews, the more customers will be drawn to your restaurant and willing to pay more. And it's free!
Local SEO ranking is improved: Having lots of good reviews is one of the most important factors that Google considers when ranking websites in search engine results pages (SERPs). According to Search Engine Journal, the number and score of Google reviews a business both influence local search rankings.
Get a higher click-through rate (CTR): Since people trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, it makes sense that businesses with positive Google reviews have higher CTRs. These reviews make your business more visible on Google Search and Maps, and people are more likely to click on positive reviews.
How To Get More Google Reviews For Your Restaurant?
Here are some tips on how to get your customers to leave Google reviews for your restaurant, especially five-star reviews:
Send text reminders. Text messages have a high open rate, so sending a reminder to your customers to leave a review is a great way to make sure they see it. Use a service like Text My Main Number to schedule these texts and create custom templates.
Offer a promotion. People love free stuff, so incentivize your customers to leave a review by offering a prize, such as a free meal or gift card. Send a simple business text to all your customers about this promotion, or you can use a group messaging function to send tailored messages to different groups of customers.
Use an NPS score. An NPS score is a way to measure customer satisfaction. Send out an NPS survey via text message and ask your customers to leave a review on Google after they complete it.
Market it on social media. Encourage your customers to leave reviews on your social media pages, such as Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok. Use social media to spread the word about your positive Google review.
Hand out stickers and pamphlets. This is a traditional way to promote your Google reviews, but it is still useful. Hand out stickers and pamphlets to your customers after they leave your restaurant or pick up their takeout order.
- Give them a memorable experience. The best way to get customers to leave positive reviews is to give them a great experience. Create a welcoming environment, provide generous hospitality, and serve delicious food. When customers feel valued, they are more likely to leave a positive review.
What Makes A Google Review Relevant Or Useful?
Length: Reviews that are at least 200 characters long are considered more relevant. Google assumes that longer reviews have more content and, therefore, more useful information. For example, a review of a restaurant might include longer descriptions of the best dishes, details about the service, or suggestions on parking and reservations. Reviews that are longer are also more likely to rank higher in the "most relevant" list.
Specificity: Specific reviews are considered more useful than general reviews. Specific reviews are more likely to tell a story and provide more details about the reviewer's experience. For example, a specific review might mention the names of specific dishes that the reviewer enjoyed or the names of specific staff members who provided excellent service.
Local perspective: Google values reviews from local guides. Local guides are people who have a lot of experience reviewing businesses on Google. They are considered to be experts in the field of business judgment, at least in their area. Google believes that reviews from local guides are more trustworthy.
Keywords: Reviews that include relevant keywords are also considered more relevant. Google uses keywords to index and rank reviews. For example, if you are searching for "best Italian restaurants in New York City," Google is more likely to show you reviews that include these keywords.
Photos: Reviews that include photos are also more likely to be considered relevant. Photos provide additional information about the reviewer's experience and help to build trust with potential customers. For example, a photo of a delicious-looking dish at a restaurant makes a potential customer more likely to visit that restaurant.
Bad Reviews: Should I Worry About Them?
Bad reviews ruin your restaurant business. Just like health code violations, they will scare away customers faster than you can say, "I'm sorry."
- Potential customers will avoid your restaurant. A study by Soundwave showed that one negative review would drive away 22% of potential customers. And if you have three or more negative reviews, you can surely expect to lose nearly 70% of your potential customers.
- Your revenue will decrease. A study by LSA Insider found that businesses with a star rating of 1-1.5 have 33% less revenue than the average business.
- Trust in your brand will go down. Forbes reports that 50% of customers question the quality of a business that has negative reviews.
- Your restaurant will rank low in search results. Review ratings are a factor that Google and other search engines use to rank websites. If you have poor reviews, you are less likely to show up at the top of search results.
- The more negative reviews you get, the harder it will be to recover. A business with a lot of negative reviews will have to rebrand itself entirely to regain customer trust. And even then, there is no guarantee that customers will come back.
Bad reviews are very bad for your restaurant business. Do everything you can to avoid getting bad reviews in the first place. And if you do get a bad review, respond to it promptly and professionally.
How To Respond To Negative Reviews On Google?
Google ratings and reviews are the first place you should check for negative reviews. Responding to them is the first step to improving your Google review rating.
Here's how to respond to a 1-star review on Google:
- Be professional and helpful.
- Read the review carefully to understand the problem. Think about how you can fix it and what you want to say in your response.
- Apologize if you made a mistake. Don't apologize if it's not your fault or if the customer is being rude.
- If the problem needs more investigation, let the customer know. Come back and update your response once you have resolved the issue. If you need more information from them, ask them to contact you by email or phone.
- If the problem is easy to fix, tell the customer exactly what you have done to fix it.
- End your response on a positive note and thank them for bringing the issue to your attention.
Here is an example of a good response to a bad restaurant review:
How To Write A Perfect Reply To A Positive Google Review?
- Thank the reviewer for their kind words. Let them know that you appreciate them taking the time to share their positive experience online.
- Don't wait too long to respond. Show the customer that you value their feedback by responding promptly. If you wait too long, they may feel ignored and move on.
- Keep it short and personal. No one likes to read long replies, so keep your response to the point. Address the customer by name and express your gratitude for their review.
- Invite them back. If you made the customer happy, let them know. Ask them to spread the word about your restaurant on social media and to bring their friends and family back next time.
- Use relevant keywords. Adding relevant keywords to your response helps your business show up higher in search engine results. Be careful not to overuse keywords, though, as this will make your response sound spammy.
Google reviews show how good your restaurant is, and whether or not they are true, customers trust them.
The more positive reviews you have, the more people will trust your business. The more people trust your business, the more money you have to make. We all have to eat, so restaurant reviews are very important.
But its not just important to get more Google reviews for your restaurant. You even need to manage those reviews. This task becomes even more difficult when your restaurant has GMB profiles for multiple locations to manage. An online reputation management tool like Statusbrew can help you a lot here by combining all reviews in one unified dashboard and making it easy for you to respond to all of them instantly.
Start managing your Google reviews for free today and become the best-rated restaurant in town!
Statusbrew is an all-in-one social media management tool that supports Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, and even Google My Business.
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
Here are some commonly asked questions about Google restaurant reviews:
How to find your Google reviews of a restaurant?
Open Google Maps. Click Menu from the top left corner. Click Your contributions. Click Reviews to find places you have reviewed.
How to reply to Google My Business reviews for a restaurant?
In the Google search bar, enter your business name. Tap Reviews. Tap Reply for the review you would like to reply to.
How to turn off Google restaurant reviews?
Unfortunately, no, businesses can't turn off or disable Google reviews. As Google's policy states, reviews are an essential part of the Google Business Profile platform for establishing trust with potential customers and providing valuable feedback to businesses about their products or services.