Online reviews, not critics, influence dining choices: study

07 July, 2016 by

New data from Dimmi has revealed the habits and motivation of Aussie diners.

In a study that reached more than 2,000 restaurant bookers nationwide, Dimmi sought to identify the primary influences and most trusted sources when it comes to deciding where to eat.

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The survey showed that online diner reviews are key when it comes to decision making, with 35 percent of people saying that online reviews were most trusted and relied upon. Interestingly, only 5.3 perfect of those surveyed said they would be influenced by official publications in newspapers or magazines.

When asked whose opinions were most influential, 71.2 percent of diners surveyed said that online diner reviews were their key source of influence, while 28.8 percent of diners citing food critic reviews as influential.

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“Over the past seven years we have been busy creating Australia’s largest restaurant marketplace, a marketplace that has reviews at its very core. We now have one million diner reviews onsite and these reviews are obviously helping diners make informed decisions everyday,” said Stevan Premutico, CEO and founder of Dimmi.

The survey also revealed that diners seek out menus first and foremost when it comes to picking a restaurant, with 53 percent of people accrediting menus as most influential when choosing a restaurant. This result was followed by photos and online reviews.

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“We’re pleased to be able to use technology to tap into the mindset of the Australian diner and discover what he or she values most,” said Premutico.

Dimmi will be releasing its annual Dimmi Australian Dining Index (DADI) in August this year. This data release will offer insight into industry trends and national dining habits.

The findings come as discussion about #couscousforcomment kicked off, after Sydney bar operator Tim Philips set tongues wagging when he publicly turned down an Instagrammer’s offer to post a positive review in exchange for a meal for two.