Years ago when a person was unfamiliar with a restaurant, they would try it to see if they liked it. Today, millennials use the internet for nearly everything. Nobody dares try a new place without checking Yelp first to see if it’s worth their time.
It’s impossible to escape this convenience, but it’s important to see the flaws or missed opportunities that could be found if Yelp isn’t the only thing factoring in on the decision of where to eat.
Millennials are primarily the demographic that can’t kick this habit. The app won’t see grandma and grandpa leave a nasty review for their usual coffee joint.
These young’uns dive straight into the app and read a bunch of reviews from strangers before making a decision and choosing where to feast.
Whatever it may be, millennials trust Yelp more than they trust themselves.
In reality, young people seem to avoid trying anything that Yelp does not consider popular. They prefer to choose favorable and trendy spots before confirming its quality in person.
If you really think about it, we are letting complete strangers dictate how we live our lives without realizing that what they say is completely circumstantial.
Just because someone on Yelp says that Joe’s Burgers are the best burgers in town does not actually mean they are.
It’s not rare to go to a restaurant with a five-star review only to find that the restaurant was great a year ago and is now a heap of trash.
But even on those occasions, the restaurant could just have had a bad day, an order could have been missed and somebody could have called out. Reviewing is too subjective.
These inconsistent and impromptu reviews can also harm small businesses.
In a study by Vice on the effect that Yelp has on restaurants, those with more stars did better than those with fewer stars, but that does not mean they are actually better.
Many locations tend to lure customers in and encourage them to check in on the app or write a review, and in return they are granted a discount or free item.
This could easily lead to an inaccurate representation of the restaurant because customers are being pushed to make a good impression in efforts of obtaining their own benefits. Their reviews then enhance the restaurant’s overall rating and reaches their goal of attracting newcomers but really it’s an illusion.
Since they do not have a big enough reputation to withstand a few haters, the opinions of a handful of individuals can put a permanent end to a new, quality establishment.
Not to mention the places that do not have any reviews or ratings at all. Millennials think they are walking on thin ice if they choose to step foot into a place that no one has reviewed or deemed worthy.
Places these days need to have a good review and it’s food has to look Instagram-worthy as well. Aesthetics are a new obsession for these Yelp addicts.
They need to make sure that the restaurant they are eating at serves eye-pleasing food that will help them gain likes on their social media posts. They tend to search for spots that have good selfie lighting or a colorful wall to pose in front of. All these decisions can be based on Yelp reviews with images and will truly determine someone’s likelihood of visiting a restaurant.
It seems like millennials are too lazy to make these decisions for themselves and let others conveniently hand them the best option.
Needless to say, millennials need to get their priorities straight and focus on what really matters. Rather than choosing a place with the most attractive dishes and positive reviews, millennials need to experience things for themselves and form their own opinions.