If you’re like most restaurateurs, you know that a website is essential for attracting new customers and promoting your business.
As a seasoned chef and restaurateur, I understand just how important it is for restaurants to have an effective website.
Not only do customers rely on a restaurant’s website for information on menu items, hours of operation, and contact information—it also serves as a digital storefront for the entire business.
From menu items and photos of dishes to details about the restaurant’s atmosphere, read on for some crucial components you should include on your website.
Importance of a Website for Restaurant Owners
Restaurants are known for implementing innovative ideas and delivering the ultimate guest experience.
With the advancement of the digital age, a website adds to that experience. Your digital platform is now your new front door.
A well-designed and up-to-date website helps create an amazing customer experience; it’s the easiest way to stay connected with customers and promote your restaurant online.
Top Things to Include in a Website for a Restaurant
1. Name, Address, Phone Number
So, what should to include in a restaurant’s website?
Well, your restaurant’s name, address, and phone number are the most important pieces of information to include on your website.
Not only should these be prominent and easy to find, but you should also ensure they are up-to-date.
Giving customers an accurate way to contact or visit your business is essential in creating a seamless customer experience.
2. Standard Pages
There are certain pages every restaurant website should include.
Standard pages for a restaurant’s website should include:
- About Us page
- Menu page
- Contact page
- Reservations page (if applicable)
Each of these pages should provide customers with easy access to the information they need.
According to research by OpenTable, 93% of customers will look at your menu before deciding where to eat.
Thus, you need to make it as appealing as possible.
A couple of tips for creating the perfect menu page:
- Ensure it’s super accessible and doesn’t require multiple clicks for the hunt.
- Ensure it is not in PDF form and that your customers can find it via a link
- The menu itself should be simple, so your customers don’t have to decode it to figure out what they want for dinner.
You can use an online graphic editor like VistaCreate to help you in the process.
Apart from the basic editing, Vista Create also offers a free menu maker that can prove to be of great help in creating a digital menu for your restaurant website or Facebook page.
Hours & Location
You must list the most basic information on your homepage, including your location and hours.
You don’t want a customer clicking around forever trying to find it, so make sure it’s front and center.
Further, if you have multiple locations, make sure to list them all.
Having listed accurate information will also help you rank better in Google search results.
3. High-Definition Images
High-definition images of your restaurant’s food should also be included on your website. After all, a picture is worth a thousand words!
Quality photos can instantly draw in customers and showcase the deliciousness that awaits them when they visit.
If you want to get fancy, consider adding a few short videos of you making a signature dish or bartenders mixing up your latest drinks special. People love getting a behind-the-scenes look at their favorite restaurants!
Including high-definition images of food on your website could potentially lead to more social media shares, helping you to gain more attention and followers.
4. Social Media Links & Instagram Feed
To create an impressionable brand experience, you must incorporate your customer’s in-person experiences on the website and on social media.
You want to be approachable and available for your customers to keep in touch.
You can use different platforms for different purposes to promote your brand.
- Use Instagram to post vibrant pictures displaying your culture and menu.
- Use Facebook for new updates and promoting brand events.
Make sure to keep your socials up to date with every new advancement.
5. Online Ordering Options
A huge chunk of the population today believes in ordering food online. You must ensure your process is simple and efficient .
A few tips:
- Point your site visitors to all the relevant information while directing them toward online ordering and reservation services.
- Add appealing images to upsell your product.
- Add descriptions and context to your menu.
6. Gift Cards (eCommerce)
Gift cards and merchandise are perfect methods for generating revenue and ensuring your customers return.
Promote giftcards on your socials and display them at the front and center of your webpage.
Gift cards are pretty much micro-loans for immediate cash flow at the restaurant. They’re a win-win!
7. Email Signup Form
Email marketing is a great way to keep your customers returning.
To get an email marketing campaign going, you can:
- Drop links to an email sign-up on your website
- Request customers’ emails on a comment card served after their meal.
- Or add a link to your socials.
Email marketing will help you promote and update your customers on each new advancement and streamline your guest engagement.
8. UVP (Unique Value Proposition)
The Unique Value Proposition (UVP) for your restaurant is what sets you apart from the competition.
It’s an essential part of any successful website and can attract customers to your restaurant.
Here are some key points to consider when crafting your UVP:
- What sets you apart?
- What type of cuisine do you serve?
- What atmosphere do you provide?
- What type of service do you provide?
- What can customers look forward to when they dine with you?
- Do you have special offers, discounts, or loyalty programs?
By answering these questions, you can craft a unique brand that resonates with your target audience and helps set your restaurant apart from the competition.
Best Website Platforms for Restaurant Websites
When it comes to building a website for your restaurant, there are many platforms available. But the key is to select one that’s easy to use and responsive across devices.
Let’s look at some of the best options.
If you’ve ever listened to a podcast, you’ve probably heard of this one.
Squarespace is an intuitive, user-friendly website builder that lets you quickly create beautiful websites with drag-and-drop functionality.
Squarespace is perfect for those with limited coding experience, as it doesn’t require any HTML or CSS knowledge.
Wix is another excellent website builder, especially for restaurants and other food-related businesses.
Wix offers users a wide range of customizable templates, allowing them to easily create high-quality websites. Wix offers integrated marketing tools and advanced analytics to help you track your website’s performance.
Even better, you can build a website with Wix for free, allowing you to try it out and see if it’s right for you.
Restaurants are well known for innovation and for displaying concepts vividly.
While these are important for designing your physical space, don’t forget to incorporate them into your online presence.
Always add your essentials and make the ordering process quick and easy. Connect with your customers by sharing your story and adding merchandise and gift cards to the list of your services.
By following these steps, you’ll be on your way to a successful restaurant website in no time.
What other elements would you include in order to create an effective online presence? Let us know!
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