Restaurant Cleanliness Statistics

Bob Gibson Bob Gibson Jolt Chief Revenue Officer

Just how important is cleanliness for restaurants? Here are the stats. 

Almost all consumers agree that cleanliness is one of the most important things when they visit a restaurant. Cleanliness is the biggest reason why people listed that they would not return to a restaurant, making it even more important to consumers than customer service. A  2016 survey found that:

  • 66% of people are not willing to revisit a restaurant with bad food hygiene. 
  • 75% of people are unwilling to ever go back to a restaurant implicated in a food poisoning or hygiene incident unless it had changed ownership. 

These statistics mean that two-thirds of people would be unwilling to return to your store after just one bad experience. Compare that to just 16% of customers saying they wouldn’t return to a restaurant because of slow service. (Check It) It's clear to see that restaurant cleanliness is even more important than customer service in your store. 

But it isn’t just food hygiene or poisoning issues that hold people back from returning to restaurants. Even just negative reviews about cleanliness can seriously affect a business. A study from Business Wire found that: 

  • 75% of consumers will not visit a restaurant with negative reviews about its cleanliness. 
  • Restaurants are the most negatively affected business by negative reviews about cleanliness, even above hotels and doctor’s offices. 

Not only do negative reviews affect three-fourths of your customers, reviews in general are becoming more important with: 

  • 60% of people reading reviews before visiting a restaurant, a habit more consistent than getting directions or looking at photos. (Open Table)
  • A one star increase on reviews will increase revenue by 5.9 percent. (Harvard Business School)

Cleanliness is obviously very important for a restaurant. But a 2009 study found that when the restaurant industry slows down, cleanliness is often put on the back burner. This study found that after the last economic recession: 

  • 85% of restaurants adopted a “do more with less” approach when it comes to cleanliness. 
  • 91% of decision makers in restaurants stated that the “do more with less” approach would most likely continue even after the economy improved. 

Cleanliness is one of the most important factors in the success of restaurants by how it affects repeat customers and review ratings. But oftentimes when restaurant business slows down many make the decision to cut back on cleanliness protocols. 

How can restaurants consistently improve cleanliness with Jolt?

Clean stores are an absolute must for top-performing locations. Jolt uses photo proof inside digital checklists to improve employee behavior for cleaner kitchens, dining rooms, and bathrooms. 

With Jolt, employees work like you're there, even when you're not. Jolt helps franchise owners achieve team accountability with digital checklists and training for cleaner stores.

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