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HOW TO EXCEED CUSTOMER EXPECTATIONS | 3 tips to get more restaurant 5 star reviews

Updated: Oct 12, 2019

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Welcome to another episode of making dough restaurant show where we believe that every restaurant deserves to owning a profitable restaurant that does not own them.

Today is another special episode of making dough Q and A show where I can answer your question. Today's question from KLAAS VICTOR and Victor asked " Is there a way to stimulate the clients to rate 5 stars on google? A free coffee perhaps?"

There are many ways to encourage your customers to leave you reviews however there's no way to make them leave you 5 stars reviews.

So to answer that question I will give 3 tips about how to get more reviews and 3 possible tips on how more likely to get 5 stars reviews.

Let's start talking about the 3 tips on how you can more likely to have 5 stars reviews

Nothing new!

No there is nothing new under the sun!

You got to exceed the expectation.

And today if you just meet the expectation like..

I give you $10 for a sandwich and you give me a sandwich and it tastes good. Obviously, because I paid $10.

That's the meaning of meeting the expectation.

Or there was a good enough friendly service and that's what paying for as for my $10.

That's not to compel somebody to go out of their busy-busy day. They got kids, they got work, they got issue... who knows?

Making people go and taking for 5-10 minutes out of there busy day to help you?

You got to exceed the expectations not mean it.


Meeting expectation will not get you 5 stars! As in, it won’t compel people to make time out of their busy way and go be nice to you! But how?!

Let me give you a couple of tangible answers!

Here is my first tip for you to exceed the customer's expectations.


People are hungry and they don't want it to take long for 30-45 minutes for their food to serve. They will rather stayed home and microwave something or make a box of mac and cheese.

One thing I want you to realize that we have these whole industries like a fast-food where food is served fast.

The question I have for you is how can you exceed your customer expectations if you take 15-20 minutes of wait time to get their food?

How can you exceed that expectation to get 10-15 minutes?

It depends on what food you served.

How everybody is doing in your 35 miles radius? And how are you going to exceed the expectation in your speed of service?

I don't know how to do that fantastic but first, start by setting the standards on how you measure your ticket time.

There is a lot of POS that can be displayed in the kitchen that can calculate the average time.

If not you can get some pen and paper and write it down every time the food is served and how long the time from the ticket. That's matter!

Set standards, have speed trials and we teach different techniques for them to be faster. This is the aspect that you need continuous improvement and that is reducing your ticket time. That is your other goals in life as a restaurant owner.

The faster the food is served the better!

People are busy.  

If avg restaurants that serve what you serve to take 15  minutes. You take 10. Your team must know the standards of Speed of service.

That’s a simple way of exceeding expectation!

Here's the Tip no.2 You already know that you can have an overly friendly service. I know it is a vague term but it is a way to exceed expectation.

You can't stand there and observe your staff how they are doing for 10-15 minutes. And measure is the greeting and fare welling that you and your service are providing to your customers.

You can't stand there and observe your staff how they are doing for 10-15minutes.

You can have greeting police. You got to have training for this staff. You got to have a script what they will say when people walk in and out. And what are the standards do you have.


Greeting and fare welling in an OVERLY friendly service way is something you can train your servers.  

Have got to train your people on this and daily emphasize how important it is!

Role play so they TASTE the difference!

Have a video training and have them watch and re-watch

Tip no 3 how you exceed the expectation in your restaurant is through cleanliness and that is in your control.


Cleanliness doesn't mean fancy stuff or beautiful decor.

This isn’t about fancy decor! People notice cleanliness!

People care about the bathroom. because a lot of times they feel that when the bathroom is clean it's an indication of the kitchen. And it's a well-known thing.

So do you have a bathroom cleaning checklist? Are you able to add some fake greenery or something that make your bathroom alive?

Buy an air freshener for your bathrooms so they smell like lavender!

Have cleaning checklists and hold your team accountable.

This is probably the easiest step to start this process of exceeding expectations.

Now, 3 ways to get MORE reviews!

1. Ask for it!

People don’t know that this matters to your business!

You can ask indirect the customers like use stickers or something you can post on your 4 sides of Wall saying something like “it would mean the world if you’d take 5 minutes and leave us a review”. You can use your Website or write something under your receipt saying the same thing.

Super tip for directly asking your customer for reviews. Order business cards where you are giving folks a complimentary order of breadsticks And on the other side: Yelp and etc logos and says “Would you please leave us a review?” “It would help us out?!”

Tip no 2 on how you can get more reviews is to Incentives the customers to give you a review.


This might not give you a 5 stars reviews but you will get more reviews and this is how we do it.

I have a free template on our website where you can download it.

I use the template to response on our online reviews. I have multiple templates for negative reviews. I have multiple templates for positive reviews.

Where I make sure I can hit the different points I want to say in my response to our customers.

For the bad reviews, I stick on the template. I don't get emotional about it. I don't take it personally. And I respond in a courteous way. Get the job done. Apologize and all of that.

For a positive review make communication of saying thank you to them. Email them like you want something to send them to thank you certificate of a little thank you gifts.

That's incentive positive reviews.

And for a negative side, it is also the same as we want to make things right we would like to send you a gift certificate and hopes you give us another opportunity please email us.

Incentive reviews - good and bad!

Respond to every review and thank them for making the time

For the 3rd and last tip is…


One of the things we do is to have a nameplate for our team. A lot of times even good or bad reviews the customers will remember the name of the server.

So you will know who was it, who did it and what was it.

What we do is If a customer mentions our server's name on a + review, they will receive a $10 gift card!

So it’s your teams top priority!

Alright, I share with you 3 ways how to exceed the customers expectations and 3 tips on how to get more reviews.

Hope I served you well.

If you have any questions and you want me to cover that in the future. Be sure you go to our website, scroll down and there is a section where you can't put your questions. And I'll be happy to cover that on the next episode.

Thank you so much and appreciate that very much and as I'll be back to work and make some dough!



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