Restaurant Toolkit

10 review response templates for your restaurant (positive & negative!)

After analyzing hundreds of reviews online, we've created 10 review response templates for your restaurant.
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For better or worse, online reviews are an essential component of running a successful restaurant. Customers place a great deal of trust in others’ recommendations, and reviews can be an excellent tool for growing your business. Unfortunately, negative restaurant reviews have drastically increased over the past year, which can seriously harm your eatery’s profits – and lifespan. However, with the right response, any review – positive or negative – can benefit your restaurant and show customers you care. That’s where our review response templates come in!

Review response templates keep your restaurant staff efficient, productive, and focused. Chances are that you’ve spent time navigating reviews on Google, Yelp, and TripAdvisor already, so why not utilize your expertise? With our complimentary templates, you can achieve increased customer engagement, a stronger reputation, and profit growth of nearly 10%. Let’s find out why a great review response matters – and how to craft them!

How should my restaurant address online reviews?

For starters, your business should respond to every review – positive or negative – in a timely fashion. In fact, when writing a review, most customers expect a response within one day. Expedient responses build trust with your customer base, and showcase that you genuinely care about your eaters’ experiences. They also let you highlight your business’s strengths, shaping your image and reputation. Another benefit? By including your restaurant’s name in your response, you’ll be boosting its SEO performance

It’s very important to maintain a professional, customer-friendly tone. Remember that when you respond to a review, you’re representing your business – being aggressive, dismissive, or snide will turn customers away. The power of effective communication is critical for dealing with online feedback. This demonstrates to all current and potential eaters that you respect your consumers, and are passionate about satisfying their demands. With a healthy attitude towards criticism of all kinds, customers will be eager to engage with your brand!

What are some review response strategies?

When you’re responding to customer reviews, it pays to be enthusiastic. By employing a keen willingness to communicate, every review – even negative ones – can be beneficial. Here are some simple strategies you can use to get value from every piece of online feedback you receive. 

1) Do your research

Read negative reviews closely, and understand their context. When did the customer leave their review? Are they marked as a Local Guide or premium user? Did they include a photo or rating alongside their feedback? When you have a complete understanding of what the customer feels went wrong, cross-reference the situation with your team. This will help you respond and provide feedback in a way that treats every customer as an individual. 

2) Be expedient

As mentioned above, customers really appreciate quick replies. In a busy world (and an even busier industry), being able to address eater comments and concerns quickly is priceless. This doesn’t mean that you should rush out a half-baked pleasantry – instead, focus on being concise and eliminating anything irrelevant. Zero in on specific points made by the customer, and reference them clearly in any answer you give. 

3) Stay positive and professional

It’s in our nature to respond to frustration with frustration, but a harsh reply can be catastrophic for your restaurant’s identity. Customers expect business owners (especially in the restaurant industry) to be courteous, level-headed, and rational, even when dealing with complaints. If you meet these expectations, you won’t just be solving one customer’s problem – you’ll be showcasing your professionalism publicly. 

4) Leverage customer engagement

Think about why people write online reviews: they want to be heard. A review of any kind is already an asset for your restaurant, because it shows that your eaters are engaged. About 79% of customers that leave negative reviews are willing to overwrite them with positive ones if their concerns are addressed. Why not make use of that engagement? Try to solve your customers’ problems ASAP in your responses, and give them a reason to change their minds.

Why would I need a review response template?

Running a restaurant takes a lot of time, effort, and energy. Effective review responses do, too. When you’re a restaurateur, the former of these activities typically has priority. So why juggle online customer service with real-world food service? You don’t need to be an incredible creative writer to make the most of your business’s digital reviews. Our review response templates are a streamlined, accessible resource that keep you in control. 

After analyzing hundreds of online restaurant reviews, we’ve created 10 templates that you can apply to every type of customer feedback. These powerful templates help your team respond to eater reviews quickly and effectively, ensuring that future reviews are even better. No matter what your restaurant’s size, type, or style is, our customizable responses make every review you receive valuable.

By filling out the form below, you’ll have access to a complimentary download of these review response templates. The template package contains pre-written responses for:

  • Blank reviews
  • Low-information reviews
  • Team member-focused reviews
  • Food-focused reviews
  • Service reviews
  • Customer inquiries
  • Fake reviews
  • Customer complaints

…and more!

Can I see some template samples?

Of course! Get a taste of how these review response templates can benefit your restaurant below.

Response to a No-Text Review


Thank you for your [NUMBER]-star review! We’re glad you enjoyed your experience at [RESTAURANT NAME] and hope to see you again soon.


Response to a Customer Inquiry


Thank you for bringing this to our attention! At [RESTAURANT NAME], we are committed to providing great customer service and would like the opportunity to make this right. 

Please give us a call/email at [PHONE NUMBER / EMAIL ADDRESS]. Our [POSITION + NAME] will take care of this personally. We hope to find a solution as soon as possible.


Make every review a positive one!

With the review response strategies above and our downloadable templates below, you’ll have everything you need to incentivize incredible reviews. Make every customer feel recognized and validated from your responses, and a loyal, passionate base of regular eaters will follow. Don’t forget: every review, good or bad, is an opportunity for brand advocacy, digital marketing, and restaurant success!

Download your set of review response templates with the following form, and use Otter to keep customers coming back!

Download Otter's Free Review Response Templates for Restaurants

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