Wait longer for feedback to boost service ratings online

London, May 11 (IANS) A long wait before asking for feedback about a service or product would increase the odds of getting a better review by your customers, researchers say.

The findings revealed that people who waited longer or travelled farther before authoring a review gave more favourable evaluations.

“If someone visited a particular restaurant in their home town and then in another state, he or she gave a better star rating when the restaurant was out of town,” said lead author Nina Huang from Temple University in Pennsylvania.

The investigators analysed data from more than 166,000 online restaurant reviews on travel website TripAdvisor.com that provides reviews of travel-related content.

They used a Google Maps application and information in the reviewer’s profile to calculate the distance between the author’s home and the restaurant.

The same positive effect occurred when reviewers waited two or more months versus one month or less to write a review.

The researchers discovered that reviewers who experienced both time delay and greater physical distance from the restaurant gave the highest ratings.

It might be wise to take a moment to distinguish between reviews written by locals versus travellers before judging a product or service, the authors noted in a paper published in the Journal of Consumer Psychology.

“When people are reading a review, they assume it is objective,” Huang noted, adding, “We found that reviews are not always as objective as we thought. Time and space distance is going to bias someone’s evaluation of certain experiences.”



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