Ever had a bad review on Yelp? If you are anything like Chef Stefan Richter, “Top Chef” runner up and restaurateur, you may have lost sleep over negative Yelp reviews. With 50 million unique visitors each month, it is hard to ignore the influence of Yelp. It has turned the tables on how diners discover new places to eat and how restaurants operate.
At today’s education session, 2011 National Restaurant Association Restaurant, Hotel-Motel Show attendees listened to a lively discussion with Stefan Richter, Luther Lowe, director of business outreach for Yelp and moderator Corby Kummer, senior editor, The Atlantic.
As a business owner, Richter opened the discussion with his own personal experience with Yelp. “I just opened my restaurant in L.A., and the first three Yelp reviews were horrible. They hated the place. The food was bad. Service was bad. Everything was bad. And you start to think, how could this happen? I cook everyday, I buy the best ingredients—it can make your head spin.