“It takes 20 years to build a reputation – and 5 minutes to ruin it”

Business magnate Warren Buffet’s quote couldn’t be truer than it is today. Apart from word-of-mouth recommendation, online opinions are considered the most trustworthy source of information today, so businesses can’t afford to ignore the fact that a bad review can leave their reputation hanging in the balance. Restaurants in particular are at the forefront of business sectors where online reputation can be a decider as to whether they sink or swim. Would you eat in a restaurant that featured a review like these?

“The worst restaurant experience I have had in a long, long time. The restaurant itself is nicely done up but we all agreed the acoustics are very bad.”

“I also enjoyed the piano, too bad we can barely hear it… It was too noisy, I really had to yell to speak with my friend.”

“Food was good but the restaurant is too noisy. The waitress mixed up part of our order because she could not hear us.”

Noise is cited as one of the top 5 reasons for someone not to return to a restaurant. Losing repeat business due to poor acoustics is bad enough – but what if someone then goes and puts their opinions online? The above quotes are taken from real online restaurant reviews where excessive noise or poor acoustics were cited as a problem. And there’s more…way more. On Tripadvisor alone, there are over 2,000 reviews that feature the term “too noisy” – and that’s just in London! The power of sites like Tripadvisor and Open Table (formerly TopTable) combined with the presence of reviews on Google Places makes it impossible to ignore the thoughts and feelings of consumers – particularly when it comes to eating out.

As a restaurant owner, this means you should read your reviews and take heed. Better still, act before someone writes a bad review if you know you have an excessively noisy restaurant. It may only take one bad review for your business to feel the effects – according to online business 540SE0, 73% of consumers say that good reviews make them trust a business more. So a bad review will certainly have the reverse effect! We are working with more and more restaurants to resolve their acoustic issues, and with good reason. Contact us if you are concerned about the acoustics in your restaurant or dining space.