How Many Reviews Do You Need to Increase Your Average Star Rating?

How Many Reviews Do You Need to Improve Your Average Star Rating

Online reviews play a significant role in consumer decision-making and business reputation management. Many individuals rely on platforms such as Google, Yelp, or Amazon to gather information about restaurants, hotels, and products before making a purchase. The rating stars and comments have a significant impact on our choices.

Your average star rating is important as a business owner. It reflects your reputation and can influence potential customers. So, how many reviews do you need to improve your average star rating? Let’s discuss this and discover effective strategies for managing online reviews.

The Power of Online Reviews

Before we delve into the mechanics of review counts and star ratings, it is important to understand why online reviews have a significant influence. This is primarily due to the concepts of trust and social proof.


Consumers often rely on the opinions and experiences of their peers rather than advertisements or marketing messages, as a five-star rating or a positive testimonial from a fellow consumer can help establish trust in your business.

Social Proof:

Reviews offer social proof of your business’s legitimacy and customer satisfaction. They validate your assertions and provide reassurance to potential customers that they are making a wise decision.

Factors Influencing Average Star Ratings

Understanding the calculation of average star ratings is important. The formula is straightforward: it is calculated by dividing the total sum of star ratings by the number of reviews. However, what factors impact this average?

Positive and Negative Reviews:

As expected, positive reviews raise your average star rating, while negative reviews decrease it. Each review, regardless of being a glowing recommendation or a critical evaluation, influences the calculation.


Reviews that are significantly higher or lower than average can have a significant impact on your overall star rating.

The Law of Large Numbers

The Law of Large Numbers states that as the number of reviews increases, the average rating becomes more reflective of your business’s true quality. This is beneficial because it allows for improvement in your average rating even if there are initial negative reviews.

Having only one review can greatly affect your average rating, especially if it’s a five-star or one-star rating. However, when you have numerous reviews, the impact of a single extreme rating becomes less significant.

Case Studies and Examples

The concept can be better understood by using real-world examples.

Scenario 1: The New Kid on the Block

A new restaurant has received five-star ratings from all five of its customers, resulting in an average rating of 5.0. However, it is important to note that this may not provide a comprehensive overview of the restaurant’s performance as only a small number of customers have shared their experiences.

Scenario 2: Established Excellence

The restaurant has received 500 reviews and has an average rating of 4.3, with a few negative reviews. However, the majority of customers have a positive experience, and the overall rating accurately reflects the restaurant’s quality.

The Role of Consistency

While it is important to gather reviews, it is equally crucial to maintain consistency in delivering high-quality products or services. Even with a substantial number of reviews, the presence of negative ones can negatively impact your reputation.

Strategies for Improving Average Star Ratings

Increasing Positive Reviews:

1. Actively Request Feedback:

To increase your Google Reviews, it is recommended to encourage satisfied customers to leave reviews by soliciting their feedback. This can be done through follow-up emails or text messages after a purchase or service, including a direct link to your review page.

2. Offer Incentives:

Offer incentives, such as discounts, loyalty rewards, or entry into a contest, to customers who provide reviews. Ensure that these incentives adhere to the guidelines set by the review platform.

3. Simplify the Process:

To facilitate customer reviews, offer clear instructions, direct links, or QR codes. A simplified process increases the likelihood of customer participation.

Improving Poor Reviews:

1. Respond Promptly and Professionally:

Respond to negative reviews in a timely manner, showing empathy and a willingness to resolve any issues. Demonstrate your commitment to customer satisfaction.

2. Resolve Issues Privately:

When dealing with unhappy customers, it is recommended to handle their concerns privately. Once the issue is resolved, kindly ask them to update their review to accurately represent their improved experience.

3. Showcase Improvement:

Please provide an explanation of the steps you have taken to address concerns in subsequent reviews. This showcases your dedication to ongoing improvement.

Addressing Very Negative Reviews:

1. Report Fraudulent Reviews:

If you encounter fraudulent or highly offensive reviews, it is recommended to report them to the platform for removal. Many review platforms have policies in place to address fake reviews.

2. Request Removal for Violations:

If a negative review violates platform guidelines, it is appropriate to kindly ask for its removal by citing specific violations. Review platforms generally consider guideline violations seriously.

3. Respond Professionally:

When faced with negative reviews, it is important to respond professionally. Avoid becoming defensive or argumentative, and instead view these responses as a chance to demonstrate your dedication to customer satisfaction.


The number of reviews needed to increase your average star rating varies and depends on consistently accumulating reviews, delivering quality, and addressing concerns professionally. A significant number of reviews can help stabilise your average rating and provide a more accurate representation of your business’s quality.

In today’s digital age, actively managing and engaging with online reviews has become essential for long-term business success. By prioritizing the cultivation of a strong online reputation, you can effectively improve your average star rating and attract a larger customer base.

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