Looking to claim a bigger piece of the pie in the pizzeria industry in your area? Perhaps you are even looking much further down the line, hoping to expand your franchise to encompass other zip/postal codes that would appreciate your unique take on the most popular dish in this half of the continent. Outside of great pizza, service, and location, this growth in customer-base and revenue all begins with your website. However, many pizzeria owners have been slow to jump on the necessity of a website to serve as their online representation, resting instead on laurels and local word-of-mouth. In comparison to the other restaurant concepts floating around out there, the pizza industry (big chains aside) has been less eager to adopt technology. Thankfully 2015 (and beyond) is evidencing a reversal in this way of thinking. Savvy pizza-based restauranteurs now understand that the time is now when it comes creating an online presence that not only serves as a calling-card to existing customers, but one that reaches the ones that don’t know about them yet (and that’s where the growth comes in). If you’re still on the fence about a new or rebuilt website for your pizzeria, or are simply looking for more information on the matter, we encourage you to read further.
5 Reasons Why Pizzerias Need an Optimized Website to be Successful in Modern Times
1. Unparalleled Level of Competition in the Food Service Industry
There is nary a metropolis or small town without a pizzeria within a few short blocks from one another. In addition to “walking pedestrian” availability there are also a slew of other pizza parlors from outside of any direct area vying for the very same customers. Before these customers step inside your brick and mortar (or order for delivery) to get a taste of what makes your offering better than the rest, you need first to stand out from the rest. The only way to do this, in modern times, is to ensure your website is superior to that of your competition. Keep reading to find out how to accomplish this.
2. Customer Discovery is a Mobile Experience – Accommodate Them
You know those customers that are looking to visit a pizzeria or order pizza from somewhere new tonight? They’re doing so while on their mobile devices (smartphones/tablets). They are not on their desktop computers performing the search. They no longer keep paper-menu flyers in the house and most certainly do not keep them on their person (straight from mail box to the recycle bin). Today’s dining consumer can barely muster up the effort to place a phone call for an order much less inquire about a menu or hours of operation. Customers are connected online 24/7 and they are on-the-go during that same timeframe, sleeping hours aside. Your prospective customers are using mobile devices to find either you or your competition. The good news, is that 80% of these local customer smartphone searches actually convert! So, knowing that your customer is mobile, and that they are far more likely to buy from a pizzeria that delivers the information to their mobile device in an easy to navigate manner, the conclusion is as clear as day – you need your website to be 100% mobile-optimized with responsive design.
3. Local SEO Dominates the Future of Online Search
Notice how the stats quoted above mention “local search”? Local search behavior and the manner of which Google delivers results accordingly is the key to your online success as a pizzeria. In order to keep both local and outside competition from claiming your pizza-craving customers you need to claim your position on the Google map in Google search results, while vying for the remaining page-one spots for varying keyword searches that include “pizza”, “pizzeria”, and “(your city)”. This process starts by setting up an optimized Google My Business page and verifying your local business’ website. Once that has been completed, your entire site will need to be outfitted for local area search engine optimization.
4. If You Don’t Control Your Image Online They Will
Aside from the obvious, do you know why it is so very important that you have a site built for local SEO? So that you are the one to control your online presence, not the likes of Yelp, UrbanSpoon, TripAdvisor, and the rest of the directories and forums. While these online resources can serve you well (or not) your voice should be the first voice that anyone (customers) should hear when performing a search about your pizza business. The only way to make this happen, is to maintain a strong local online presence for any and all search that occurs for your business. Once again, a local search engine optimized website for your pizzeria is the answer.
5. Social is Not Enough Anymore
Many pizzerias manage their online presence through social media alone. They assume that they can engage customers and handle customer inquiries, complaints, and concerns just fine on their Facebook and Twitter profile, while their website (if one even exists) simply sits there as an online menu and address to their location. However, with Facebook and Twitter changing the game forever last year (2014) for brands and businesses, handcuffing the ability to promote without paying (advertising), social media alone no longer cuts it. A great website is needed to communicate with customers (via a blog and streamlined social media plug-ins) and to give pizza parlors one centralized platform from which they manage their entire online marketing campaign. We understand the reliance on social media to manage the online presence of a busy pizza business, given the relative ease of setting and maintaining the profiles, which is why we have made the process for setting up an optimized pizzeria website just as easy.
It’s great that you’ve taken the time to read through this article in its entirety. It shows that you are truly serious about maintaining (or launching) a successful pizzeria for today’s consumer. Now that you’ve acquired the knowledge, it is time to take the next step and claim an optimized website for your establishment. Please feel free to contact The SEO Chefs anytime to talk about what we can do to make your pizzeria the biggest online success of its kind in your locale.