How to Use Negative Restaurant Reviews to Drive Growth And Revenue

How to Use Negative Restaurant Reviews to Drive Growth And Revenue

It is true that in the restaurant business, the importance of word-of-mouth can’t be underestimated. Whether it is through a feedback form or a small interaction with the restaurant manager, an honest customer review always helps in improving the organization’s services for continued growth.

negative restaurant reviews

In this digital time and age, restaurants rely heavily on online reviews. Today, it is the number of positive online customer reviews that drives the organization’s revenues. But what if the reviews are negative?

Here’s how you can use negative restaurant reviews to tap into potential business:

1. Instant response to feedback

Got a bad review? Don’t fret! Take immediate steps to respond. Be proactive in executing a response strategy while handling negative reviews. If possible, assign someone to respond to customer feedback on a daily basis.

When a restaurant is quick in responding, it shows a high level of dedication to the customer. The goal of “simply” responding to reviews is enough to develop customer loyalty. So, deal with such situations with sincerity.

Drop a friendly email. First, thank the customer for taking out time to review your restaurant. Then, apologize to him or her for the inconvenience caused. If you can reach out to your unhappy customers personally, there’s nothing like it!

Also, train your servers to ask for a feedback when the customers are paying the bill or having a meal. This will highlight the fact that you not only care about them but also are open to listening to customer suggestions and complaints.

2. Revise menu items

Improvisation is the key to success in the restaurant business. Online reviews can give you fresh ideas for menu items. Similarly, if one particular cuisine has been disliked by many, you can remove that from the menu altogether.

In fact, by doing so you will always retain an element of surprise for your customers—which in turn will drive your profits and thus assist in a sustainable restaurant business. So keep revising the menu to “surprise” and “delight” your customers!

Another interesting scheme you can apply here can include asking the customers (with negative reviews) about specific cuisines or beverages they would like to see on the menu. You can call for their opinion on those platforms where they have left a review about your restaurant itself (such as food search and discovery platforms, social media channels or restaurant website).

Once the customers start feeling they matter to your restaurant, your restaurant will start mattering to them. It’s that simple!

3. Offer incentives to customers with negative reviews

A smart marketing strategy is one which re-targets all the customers—including the ones who were not particularly impressed with your restaurant. Your mission should be to steer your marketing efforts to encourage the ones with bad reviews to visit the restaurant again.

It is not as difficult as it sounds. Ask them for a second chance to make things right by offering them attractive incentives. They can either be monetary or nonmonetary—depending upon the damage done. Give a 10% discount on their next meal or please them with a free appetizer or dessert (today’s special).

No one says “no” to free food or an affordable check. Initiate this strategy to win the hearts of the customers genuinely. If you incentivize your efforts to convert the negative reviews into positive ones, don’t!

4. Promote your restaurant

Why? This is because promoting your business will encourage prospective customers to visit at least once. Not only this, make use of tools such as Google+ and Facebook to invite customers, who have been to your restaurant, to review and leave feedback.

Maintain a proper online website and hyperlink your social media pages and blogs (if any) to give a complete understanding of your restaurant. A digital presence is extremely important to your reputation as it will showcase you as a business that is easily approachable. And, this is one quality is a must in the service business.

Engage in a humble conduct and try to generate a positive publicity for your business. This will overshadow the occasional negative reviews and give you the time and space to rectify them properly.

Apart from this, use your website to establish communication with your customers and keep them informed about special menus, additional cuisines, daily deals, price changes and announcements about events at your restaurant.

Negative reviews are everywhere. Your restaurant can’t hide from negativity. It can’t function flawlessly. No matter how good the business is, your restaurant can’t ensure the happiness of all customers. So yes, negative reviews are inevitable but they can work to your advantage, provided you embrace them with confidence and sincerity.

Think of reviews as customer research. You can certainly extract valuable insights that can be used to accelerate your restaurant’s business development and profits. Remember: It’s all about maintaining the right kind of attitude!

Now, all of these can be done manually by visiting each social media and review sites, but it is certainly time consuming. And to be honest, it’s just not sustainable!

Another alternative is to use a free analytics software which will pull all the reviews from relevant sites and present to you in an easy-to-read dashboard. You can use the data from the dashboard to improve your menu, get insights on your servers and ultimately provide a better customer experience.

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Let us help you understand your business better! Contact us today at 201-546-5555 or at OnestoPayments.Com

How To Write A Business Plan To Impress Investors

How To Write A Business Plan To Impress Investors

The term “business plan” is frightening, isn’t? Of course, it is!

The thought of having to curate a plan to fund your business through investors can easily drop you at your wit’s end! That is why lots of business owners keep delaying the completion of their business plans.

But to scale up, your small business has to seek the financial help of investors—and that isn’t possible without a proper plan in place! However, developing such a plan doesn’t have to be serious business.

The humongous task can be broken down into parts—all of which can answer an important question about the business, in an interesting & impressive manner.

How to write a business plan like that?

business plan

1. Start With The Basic Question

“Who is my ideal customer?” The success of your small business relies on the happiness of your customers. If you know who to target and for what— you have a sound foundation for conducting market research and strategizing the marketing plan.

This way writing a business plan becomes easier. It becomes focused, clear and most importantly, actionable. The business plan is a perfect breakdown of exactly what your company stands for and the services it provides!

2. Create A General Outline Of The Plan

Start your plan with the overview of your business. Answer questions such as mission & vision, products or services offered, owners of the business, etc.

As the plan progresses, address finances—the amount you need and your plans to spend it. Include at least one short-term (less than a year) and one long-term goal (3+ years) of your business, along with a few objectives to achieve those goals.

3. Study About The Market & Your Competition

Investors won’t be fully convinced with your plan unless & until you yourself know who your competitors are (along with their strengths and weaknesses) and what the current market scenario is presently like.

As a small business owner, you must divide the market on the basis of your own analysis and fit your target consumer base in one of the segments. This will not only put your research in perspective but also your business plan.

4. Conduct A SWOT Analysis

As a small business owner, you have to be realistic and work towards analyzing and improving upon your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. A business plan must reflect this genuity!

Whether it is about the things that set your business apart from others or the areas where your company needs to work harder—the investors will be mighty impressed to understand how your business plans to overcome its weaknesses & threats and leverage new opportunities against its strengths.

5. Discuss Management

A business can’t run without its employees. Therefore, you should certainly talk about the people behind all the magic! Your business plan must be able to give the investors some idea about the team’s background and their roles in the day-to-day affairs of the company.

Talking about employee management will boost the investors’ confidence in your business.

6. Talk About Financial Projections

Most businesses skip this part, but the truth is that talking about finance only shows your business in a more positive light. The business plan is the perfect platform for you to explain your assumptions about revenue, sales growth and expenditure.

Highlighting expected year of breaking even, net profits & losses and other expenses incurred will give the investors a sound idea about your business’ financial stability.

7. Discuss Customer Payment Methods

Whether you offer a product or provide services to your customers, they will make payments to you. So ask yourself: “Are my customers comfortable in making payments to my company? Am I offering them the right payment method?”

Before the investors raise questions on your payment mode, discuss it in the business plan. Talk about the software you use. It is not just about boosting the customers’ confidence by offering them a secure payment method, but also convincing the investors with your mode of running the business!

Onesto Payments, for instance, solves payments and POS challenges for small businesses. It also offers the businesses with the best and shares knowledgeable information to keep them updated.

8. Know When To End

Yes. There are many things you can mention in a business plan. But drawing attention to every other detail of the business is not going to fetch results. The key is to be smart and not go overboard with the information you put in the plan.

Investors don’t have time to read the entire business plan. So keep it simple and crisp. A concise business plan doesn’t exceed 20 pages; so make sure yours doesn’t!

Your business plan is a powerful tool. Even after you have received the desired funds, it is important to have a look at it every once a while to stay on track. While you have set goals for your business, the same can be evaluated using the plan. If the progress is not in the right direction, quickly make changes.

It is indeed essential to guide your business’ growth and expansion plans!

5 Things Retailers and Small Businesses Should Do This New Year (2016)

5 Things Retailers and Small Businesses Should Do This New Year (2016)

New Year celebrations are incomplete without a long, inspiring list of resolutions. As an individual, you might have already written them down on a piece of paper and posted it on your fridge. But as the owner of a small business, it is equally important to jot down a multitude of tasks you wish to accomplish in the next 12 months.


Because all successful businesses—small or big—thrive on improvement and what’s better than the New Year to take a fresh spin on the way forward of your small business?

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Adding to this thought, here are 5 inspiring resolutions that can help your small business achieve absolute success in 2016:

1. Invest In Your Employees

Each year, your company hires a multitude of people from different fields and demographic backgrounds—who work on a range of projects in the firm. In short, employees form the backbone of your small business.

Therefore, it is necessary to speak to them periodically to get to know their thoughts and opinions. Issue a survey to all the employees asking them about how you can help them be more efficient and how the business can up its game. Adjust your efforts to not only mentor them but also provide them job satisfaction.

In addition to this, send them to conferences and seminars to help them grow professionally. Leverage their hidden talents and enable them to take more responsibilities that will not only benefit the business but also them.

2. Strengthen Your Formal Partnerships

As a small business owner, you must think from a 360 degree point of view. While investing in employees is important, you must also be open and communicative with the organizations you partner with, such as your vendors.

When was the last time you had a face-to-face meeting or a telephonic conversation with one of your important alliances? If you are taking more than a second to think of a name, then you should certainly focus on maintaining these integral relationships.

After all, it’s nice to put a face to the people who are making things happen for your organization.

3. Focus More On Customer Experience Than Sales

Customers and sales are two sides of the same coin in a business. While sales are important for a business to produce profits and thrive, expanding the customer base is immensely critical as well.

Today, companies are taking the route of customer experience to distinguish their brands due to increased competition. The thing is when a customer makes a purchase with your business, (s)he wants to feel in a certain way.

This is the reason why your small business must come up with different ways to enhance the customer experience. This can be through gift vouchers, after-sales service or free installation assistance among others.

4. Give Back to Your Community

As the owner of a small business, you must follow the simple rule of not only “selling” but also “giving back” sometimes. If your customer base and community don’t know what your business’ mission is, they are less likely to shop from you.

Therefore, make a generous donation, sponsor a small event, hold a contest to engage the customers or collaborate with and cross-promote small businesses—there are many powerful ways through which you can give back to your community effectively.

By doing this, you will connect with the community on a far more personal level that will certainly benefit your business in the long run.

5. Secure Your Payment Transactions From Fraud

As the owner of a small business, have you asked yourself this question: “Are my customers comfortable making payments to my company? Am I offering them the right payment method?” It is good that you are raising questions on the payment mode; given that not everyone carries cash all the time.

Hence, offering a secure payment method makes the customers more confident about making payments with cards and also gives them the assurance of the fact that their money is not being associated with wrong things.

Onesto Payments, for instance, solve payments and POS challenges for small businesses. With absolutely no risk of being cheated on by technology providers, Onesto not only equips the businesses with the best but also shares knowledgeable information to keep them updated.

Lastly, learn to take time off this year. It is true that as the owner, you don’t get time to relax. But by taking time to rejuvenate, you are only going to focus better and work harder—which will ultimately help you run a more successful small business. Let the New Year inspire you to not only revolutionize your business but your own work ethics.