A recent study has revealed that customers tend to trust three and four-star restaurant ratings over one that has been rated five stars.
We can react in a variety of ways if we have a bad experience at a restaurant. For example, if the food isn't to our liking or if we are brought the wrong dish altogether, some of us will get angry, call someone over and demand we get what we want; others will do that in a calmer and more polite fashion. Then some of us will eat it and simply never return.
Whichever of those three categories you fall into, you might also be the kind of person who leaves a review after that experience. In a world where we can find out about other people's experiences at any restaurant with the click of a button, that's a big deal for anyone in the restaurant business. A few bad reviews and you might as well kiss goodbye your customers, who will most likely opt out of your food and explore the menu of nearby competitors.
When we are looking for somewhere new to try, or we are in a new city and need ideas, we'll likely head online and look for the places with the highest star rating. Or do we? A study conducted by SmallBusinessPrices.co.uk suggests that potential customers perusing Google and Yelp are on the lookout for eateries with a four or maybe even a three-star rating.
If that sounds a little backward to you, let us explain. In the eyes of some customers, five-star reviews can seem false or forced. That the owners of a restaurant might have asked family and friends to leave them five-star reviews, or perhaps even written them themselves. Three and four-star reviews, on the other hand, seem more genuine. No one is asking their loved ones to leave them anything less than a five-star review.
It's not just one or two restaurant-goers either. The aforementioned study revealed that only 10% of customers trust a five-star review when they see one. That's less than the 22% who trust three-star reviews, and a lot less than the 35% who are hunting for eateries that have a four-star rating. If you own a restaurant and you are extremely proud of your five-star review, turns out it might not be the best thing for your business after all.