What Does a Restaurant Website Need Most?

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What Does a Restaurant Website Need Most?

Don’t let the word “most” at the end of the title trick you. There is no one thing that can set you on the path to successful online customer acquisition for your eatery. Instead, there are five.

That’s right, you’ll be happy to know that if you integrate five essential elements into your website, your restaurant will begin to rank better on search engines for keywords that bring in qualified traffic with your site converting that traffic into paying customers. Enough of the chit-chat, let’s get to the goods!

5 Key Elements Necessary to Bring More Customers into Your Restaurant with Your Website

1. Ease of Navigation

Aside from an aesthetically pleasing website design (that’s a given) the one thing that will keep visitors that have just arrived at your site from clicking backspace, is the display of a logical navigation menu. Visitors need to immediately see that they can find your menu, location, and additional information (hours of operation, take-out/delivery options, etc.) about your restaurant that is directly relevant to them. If they have to spend more than three seconds to find the access points to this information, they are likely to leave your website. When selecting a website template, chose one that presents an easy-to-identify navigation menu that is upfront and center.

2. Visual Cues

The senses of sight and smell have a HUGE impact on customer decisions to eat within any given establishment. There is little that you can do about the latter when it comes to web marketing (for now) BUT you can certainly lure in online browsers with eye-catching, captivating, and downright salivation-inducing photos of your dishes. Your website template should allow for highly visible, high-resolution, and updatable imagery so that you can feature menu items where a picture is worth a thousand words. From the homepage to your menu page/s your website should send visual cues to visitors to encourage them to look no further than your establishment for their next meal.

3. A Call to Action 

You may have caught the attention of prospective customers with an attractive, easy to navigate, and media-rich website but this will all be for naught if your website does not encourage them to take the next step. When it comes to restaurant websites, a call-to-action (CTA) on every page of the website would come in the form of a coupon redemption (in exchange for email or social media follow), an online reservation form (where applicable), or a process to order online delivery. These calls to action must be highly visible on the respective pages of your website so that customers can easily find them and enter their information (one-step closer to a paying customer!). Select a website template that allows for these CTAs.

4. Social Connectivity

Positive signals coming from popular social networks (likes/comments/shares/follows) now have a significant impact as a local search engine ranking factor. To address this element and complement these five tips be sure that you set-up social media profiles for your establishment on these 5 best social networks for restaurants. Once done, connect all of these five social profiles to your website using the plug-ins (as evidenced by like/share/follow/comment icons) made readily available to you. Once again you will need a website template that allows for this. With this in place, you can proceed to remain active daily (posting and engaging in social conversations with others) on your networks and prepare to watch the social signals work to boost your website’s rank in search.

5. Search Engine Optimized for Local Mobile Search

We crammed three elements into this last point because in 2015 and beyond neither can exist without the other. You of course know that your restaurant website needs to be keyword optimized to rank well on search engines, but as a local business (whether a stand-alone or chain) your website needs to be further optimized to capture the attention of local customers. These customers search for restaurants like yours based upon geographic proximity. Your SEO plan needs to follow suit and integrate keywords semantically associated not just to the type of cuisine and clientele you serve, but to the distinct neighborhoods within a set radius to your address/es. But it doesn’t stop there. Considering that nearly 50% of all online search for the restaurant industry is performed from a mobile device, Google has essentially made it mandatory that your website be outfitted with 100% responsive design.

While there are other items to consider (link building, etc…) when crafting a wise restaurant website marketing plan adherence to the above five laws will strengthen your online presence significantly. To secure a website template that address ALL of these requirements simply contact The SEO Chefs at your earliest convenience to set your site up for success.

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