Learning how to deal with online ratings and reviews has been a topic we’ve covered since our inception. With hungry consumers frequent use of review sites such as Yelp to determine their next food spot to try out it is important for food truck owners to understand how to handle themselves when it comes to these reviews.

Although distrust in user online ratings and reviews might be more prevalent today than it was when the mobile food industry blew up 8 years ago, understanding that a proper response to these comments is still important to the future success of your food truck business.

Regardless of how cautious some vendors may be of online ratings and reviews; consumers still want to know if these reviews are credible. Before your Spring season gets too busy time some time to respond and react to your customers’ comments so others reading them will know which reviews are worth reading into and which aren’t.

How To Deal With Online Ratings And Reviews

What You Should Do In Response To Negative Online Ratings and Reviews

Always remember that it’s more constructive to treat negative reviews as suggestions for your food truck’s future success rather than complaints. Here are some ways to deal with these suggestions:

  • Respond. You should actively monitor the sites where reviewers are posting about your food truck and be prepared to respond to both positive and negative reviews.
  • Accept negative reviews. Take ownership of your business and realize that the customer experience is what’s most important for the future success of your food truck. Build goodwill with your supporters and critics. This will incentivize your active supporters to stick it out with you and it might even change the perception of your truck in the eyes of those who weren’t happy with their initial customer experience.
  • Never get personal. Remember to say thank you to reviewers and respond to their requests appropriately. Also, don’t let your message become standardized. There is a fine line between being professional and being generic. You don’t want it to look like your food truck is being run by a PR firm or image consultant.
  • Keep it short. Don’t overwhelm the customer you’re responding to or other potential customers with an essay of your side of the story. Address their needs the simplest way possible if you feel you need to provide more information, take the discussion to email or offline altogether.
  • Encourage customer feedback. Show consumers that your food truck values their feedback and takes customers’ opinions very seriously. Without an active dialogue, you can easily lose touch with your local market and their needs as consumers.

What Not to Do In Response To Negative Online Ratings and Reviews

Here some things that can come to mind when your food truck receives a negative user review. It’s important to think your actions through, however, and you should never react this way:

  • Post fake reviews. Resist the temptation to post positive feedback yourself or have your friends, family or food truck staff members do it for you.
  • Pay others for fake reviews. Paid reviews are never a strategy for successful businesses. These reviews are often the easiest to be seen as fake or disingenuous.

RELATED: Addressing Bad Yelp Reviews About Your Food Truck

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