Canadian Pizza Magazine

Restaurant diners will share feedback, contact info, study says

By Canadian Pizza   

Features Business and Operations Customer Service original review restaurant reviews reviews

According to findings from a new survey, restaurant-goers are skeptical of restaurant review sites, favour a friend’s recommendation, like promotions, and will give a restaurant a second chance if they feel their complaints are heard and acknowledged after a poor dining experience.

The online survey, run by Original Review, a provider of in-house restaurant review technology for diner feedback, polled 500 men and women, ages 21 and older, living within 20 miles of a major metropolitan area, who have used a restaurant review site at least once.

The survey results included several insights:

  • Nearly 70 per cent of consumers have a significant distrust of restaurant review sites; more than half of respondents were aware of scandals around fraudulent reviews.
  • Ninety-five per cent of respondents say they use review sites to search for new restaurants; over 70 per cent of respondents are concerned if reviews are old or sparse.
  • More than half of consumers surveyed will not visit a restaurant if they see just two to four negative reviews and more than 75 per cent of respondents want to see two to nine positive reviews before trying a new restaurant.
  • Nearly half of respondents only use a review site once in a while; however, 80 per cent would use a review site if they knew reviews were posted from within the restaurant.
  • Ninety per cent of respondents would participate in using a fast and easy way to comment on their dining experience if they knew that management would see it.

“The survey provides excellent insight as to what consumers expect from review sites, their dining experience and when things go wrong,” said Debra Lukacsko, Original Review co-founder and chief executive officer. “Consumers will use a review site that they feel is trustworthy and are more than willing to provide feedback when it is easy to do so and they feel they are being heard.”


A poor dining experience can result in the loss of a customer: 92 per cent of the respondents indicated that they have stopped visiting a restaurant because of one bad experience with food. For many respondents, the key to turning around a poor dining experience is feeling like their concerns are truly being heard:

Seventy-one per cent of respondents say they have stopped visiting a restaurant because of one bad experience with service. Interestingly, almost all respondents (90 per cent) say they would likely return to a restaurant where they had a bad experience with food or service if they had the ability to communicate directly with management and felt their concerns were taken seriously and there was an effort made to make it better

“Most of the time when a diner has a bad experience at a restaurant, they leave and never come back. With the OR platform, owners and managers can get alerted immediately if customer feedback is negative and address any issues. From the survey, we know that addressing issues before a customer leaves unhappy is a big opportunity, as is the opportunity to gather emails and birthdays for promotions, ” added Lukacsko.

An infographic with the Original Review review survey results can be found here. 

More information is available at the OR Customer Insight Platform, at The website launched in May.

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