When you own a restaurant, you probably rely heavily on places like Yelp and Instagram to attract potential diners. However it’s important not to minimize your own website’s power when it comes to getting new people through the door. Here are some components that every restaurant’s website should include:
Enticing photos of your food and your venue
You can use space on your website to describe how your Nonna is still in the back handcrafting her meatballs and sauce. Will it encourage a potential patron to make a reservation? Possibly. But when you’re dealing with tastebuds, photos are key. Show updated photos of real menu items so potential diners can see what they might enjoy should they take a seat in your restaurant. This is not the time to cheap out on photography. Stock images work well for some businesses, but when you’re in the food industry, you want to hire a professional photographer to ensure that the snaps you get are nothing short of appetizing.
Easy instructions about where to find you
Where exactly are you located? What type of parking is available? What are your hours? These kinds of details can make or break someone’s decision to come to your restaurant. If you’ve got other landmarks near by, point that out. For example, if you’re right next to a local comedy club, plant the seed that your spot is great for a pre-show meal.
Make your menu easy to view
If you’re forcing visitors to download your menu as a PDF, you’ve already lost a solid chunk of potential customers. People want information that’s quick and easy to access, and forcing them to go through another step is neither of those things. Instead, upload your menu directly onto your site.
Address diners with special allergies
Do you offer a gluten-free menu? What about an extensive vegetarian menu? If so, make that abundantly clear on your website. If you’ve got people who are looking for restaurants that cater to those with specific dietary needs, they’ll be combing restaurant websites looking for these details, so make sure that this information stands out.
Lastly, remember to link to your website in any place where potential diners might be reading about you. This includes your Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. If you need help getting your restaurant’s website up to speed, e-mail me for a consultation at Keith@BuckleUpStudios.com.