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The Dining Decision Ecosystem – How Diners Choose Restaurants


What Diner's Want eBook

Is your restaurant’s website helping you get butts in seats or sending diners to your competitors?

In this first of its kind survey, this ebook, What Diners Really Want From Restaurant Websites, analyzes the data to shed light on how potential diners’ view restaurant websites, their biggest frustrations and most importantly what elements can encourage them make a reservation.



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October 25, 2012

I agree with the part about the web site. It’s nice to know what to expect for food choices and even the prices. I certainly don’t want to be shocked when I get to the restaurant. Being able to look at the restaurant’s web site ahead of time leads to less anxiety on my part. Friends do heavily influence me on my decision of a restaurant. That’s for sure!

Carin Oliver

Carin Oliver

October 26, 2012

Hi Michelle,

It can be frustrating when you can’t find all the information on a restaurant’s website, especially the pricing! I don’t know why restaurant’s do that. Cheers – Carin

Sean Carolan

November 1, 2012

It surprises me that so much of a dining decision is based on research and social media online. I believe my choices are based mainly on how my peers influence me. If 65% of people are “always” getting asked for resturaunt recommendations, then it is clear that fellow consumers are the biggest influence. Great article and research here.

All the best,

Carin Oliver

Carin Oliver

November 2, 2012

Hi Sean,

We were surprised by that too. What we found is that people are evaluating 3,4 or more dining choices and use restaurant bloggers, user-generated review sites and other friends like you do, to narrow down the choices to the final one. Pretty cool stuff. Thanks!


November 5, 2012

I wonder if the methods break down similarly by sex? Women seem to prefer the online reviews… at least as far as I can tell on Yelp… Word of mouth is INVALUABLE to a restaurant… and it’s interesting to see how the cyber WOM is augmenting your real life friend’s opinions. It is really nice to be able to pick a restaurant at random, and then look up reviews on the internet before you decide to go in.

Carin Oliver

Carin Oliver

November 5, 2012

We didn’t look at how the different sexes use and influenced differently. That would be cool to know.

Dave b

June 6, 2016

Do you have any updates on this for 2016? I wonder if use of sites like Yelp are growing or staying flat.

I also had a discussion with a Restauranteur in the Family dining space and he said that kids were responsible for 30% of the decision making process. Have you heard of this and in terms of your research which category would you equate that to?


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