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Restaurants Online Reviews and Ratings: The Ultimate Guide


Choosing the right pizza

Think about your favorite restaurant outside of the quick service restaurant (QSR) pizza industry. How did you initially come to know about this establishment? Did a friend recommend it to you? Were you introduced to the pizza at a party or work event? Did you do a Google search for the highest rating pizza joint in your area?Whether we seek out written online reviews ourselves or hear about a restaurant through word-of-mouth, there is always one thing in common with how we choose a pizza place—other people. That’s right! As a society, we heavily rely on the testimonials of others to help us make the decision to eat at a pizza place.
Notably, as stated by SalesForce, “62% of customers say they share their bad experiences” while “72% of customers will share their good experiences.” Whether your QSR is making a good impression or a bad one, people are talking about it! Therefore, it is essential to the longevity of your pizza restaurant that you ensure every pizza leaving your condition deserves a 5-star rating.

There’s no doubt that all restaurant owners would like to think it is purely the taste of their pizzas that attract customers; however, the reality is that social factors play a prominent role in the success of any QSR. Still not convinced? Check out these research-based findings of the top ways people choose a pizza place:

Ratings and Reviews

The purpose of ratings and reviews is for customers to be able to help future customers by leaving their genuine take on any business’ service. From customer service to product quality, people don’t hold back when it comes to rating and reviewing. As such, society has become reliant on the recommendations and commentary of others to decide on which pizza place to visit.

In fact, according to Customer Thermometer, “90% of customers are influenced by positive reviews when buying a product.” Furthermore, it has been calculated that “80% of customers are likely to use a rating filter when searching for a restaurant” (Review Trackers). This means that the majority of people are heading straight to the Internet to search reviews before they make a decision on where to eat!

To put these numbers into further perspective, it is estimated that up to 50% of a pizza place’s customers can come from online purchases (Papa Johns). Multiplying this percentage by the 80% that use the rating filter to find their next restaurant, we can infer that 40% of those purchasing food online base their decision on online reviews. That’s a Significant amount for QSRs relying on those online purchases!

In addition, Statista reported that, “Average sales per company-owned Papa John's restaurant amounted to approximately 1.2 million USD in 2020.” To multiply that 1.2 million USD by the 40% of online purchasers consulting reviews, one pizza place can make (or lose) up to 480K depending on their online ratings and testimonials!

In a previous article discussing The True Impact of a Bad Pizza on Your Business, we discussed the fact that one customer equals around $600 USD per year for a pizza place. As you can see from the figures above, a handful or even one unimpressed customer leaving a bad online review and rating can significantly undercut your business’ bottom line. The way your pizza place is portrayed through online ratings and reviews is pivotal in how your business will perform.

Food Delivery Apps

Online rating and review searches aren’t exclusive to Google, either! Food delivery apps such as Uber Eats, Grubhub, Doordash, etc., also provide a rating and review section for each restaurant they deliver for. Before ordering for a pizza to be delivered through a food delivery app, you can bet that customers are sifting through ratings to choose the pizza place with the best reputation!

Nowadays, people are also more likely to choose a pizza place based on whether it appears as an option in a food delivery app. People are now more likely to pay for the convenience of having their food brought to them. In addition, choosing delivery over pickup is a safer choice with the Coronavirus sweeping the planet. It has been observed that, “The pandemic has more than doubled food-delivery apps’ business” (Market Watch).


Big Commerce reports the shocking statistic that “92% of people trust recommendations from friends and family over any other type of advertising.” This means that word-of-mouth has a powerful impact on the reputation of pizza restaurants within the QSR industry.

Word-of-mouth can be as simple as two acquaintances exchanging a few words about a pizza place. At the same time, it can be as elevated as a corporation sending a survey to their employees asking for pizza recommendations for their next all-staff meeting.

Think about it! A friend’s description of their experience at your pizza restaurant can be the determining factor on whether you gain or lose a new customer. Likewise, an employee’s comment about the quality of your pizza can be the deciding factor on if their company chooses to purchase 100 pizzas from your QSR for their next big corporate event.

Ready for a 5-Star Future?

Kwali is a food production platform specifically designed for the QSR industry with the ability to help any pizza place improve their online ratings and earn positive customer testimonials. While Kwali helps restaurants monitor the quality of the pizzas produced in their kitchen, the platform was also created to give management insight on how they can better train staff. Furthermore, Kwali equips managers with the ability to supervise without micromanaging.

As discussed in this article about the influence of supervision on employee performance and product quality in the QSR industry, non-invasive forms of supervision are proven to be more effective. That is, providing employees with performance-based feedback and less micromanaging can work wonders on your restaurant’s pizza quality and customer ratings.

Any owner or managers dream is to effectively train staff to the point where they are self-sufficient, fully engaged, and customer focused. This is the secret recipe to maintaining a reputation that builds your business rather than tearing it down.

In a world where ratings and testimonials are so heavily consulted, you can’t afford to allow bad pizzas to leave your kitchen. Invest in your restaurant’s wellbeing, and Contact Us today to learn more about how Kwali can improve the quality of your pizzas, lead you to more positive ratings, and increase sales!