With over a million restaurants in the USA, how will customers find yours? About
90% of customers check out a restaurant online before visiting which is why restaurant marketing and
Local SEO is key to your success.
If you don’t have an excellent online presence, it will be difficult for new customers to find you. If it’s hard to make an online booking, you may even lose out on guests.
Read on to learn more about how to maximize your use of restaurant marketing.
1. List Your Restaurant On Google My Business
If you don’t have a Google listing, it will be tough for people to find your restaurant.
Most people search the area they are on their mobile before visiting a new restaurant. You want your listing to come up on top; never underestimate the power of local SEO.
Make sure you fill out all the information on your Google listing, including opening times, a menu, how-to book, and images. Include diets you cater for and detailed information about what makes your business unique.
If it’s difficult for potential customers to find this information, they will go someplace else.
You can even enable a booking option through Google My Business. Make it super simple for people to reserve a table with just two clicks!
2. Collect Reviews and Respond to Every Single One
One of the best tools in the restaurant marketing kit is reviews. Without them, you will struggle to get business.
People depend on reviews to know whether or not your place is worth visiting and to anticipate the experience.
Encourage people to leave reviews on your Google listing, on Yelp, and on your Facebook page. Respond to reviews, too; it will show you engage with your customers and care about the experience they have at your restaurant.
3. Local Link Building and Local Directories
Getting links from other sites back to your site is a great way to market your restaurant.
Build some local links for your page; ask local bloggers to feature your restaurant in a round-up of local restaurants.
Reach out to local guides or media and ask for a feature. If these sites have good SEO and link to yours, you can benefit from it too.
4. Get Social but Understand It May Not Bring You New Customers
Social media is a significant way to get your restaurant noticed.
Nearly 50% of diners are influenced by what they see on social media. If you can position
yourself well on social media, it can work wonders for getting people through the door.
Don’t just randomly post stuff on social media, have a strategy. If you know you have a clear outline of the content you want to post, it will give a coherent feel to your social media feeds.
Ensure you include as much information as possible on your social pages, including where to contact you.
If you are keen to find new customers, giveaways can also be a great way to promote your restaurant. Offer a free meal to one lucky winner; the criteria to win is that followers have to like and share your post. This takes the burden of
spreading the word off you as you ask your customers to do it for you!
Want more followers and reviews on social media? Offer customers an incentive to write a review, such as a free coffee next time they visit.
Use stories on Facebook and Instagram to share real-time images of the food and atmosphere. If you make your food look enviable, people will want to come and eat at your place.
5. Create Content and Add to Your Website
If you want to target keywords that customers in your local area are looking for, you will need some content on your website.
Think about the niche content you could share that will help boost your ranking in search engines.
Perhaps you buy your produce from a local supplier or have a staff member you are proud of.
Share stories that make your restaurant stand out, and make sure you use longtail keywords (phrases) in
Photos are also essential when marketing a restaurant. You’ll need great images for your website, social media, and My Business listing if you want to stand out.
Not a great photographer yourself? Hire a professional to take a few snaps for you.
If you make your food and the inside of your restaurant photographable your customers will also take plenty of photos and share them online. Make sure you have a geotag location created on the social media sites so people can ‘check in’
and tag their images of your restaurant.
6. Optimize For Mobile
As most people will search for a restaurant on their phone, you want to make sure your website is optimized for mobile. From the way the site displays on a phone to the speed it loads, you need to be on top of this.
Make it easy for people to find your address and contact details; make online booking easy. Nobody wants to call to make a reservation these days!
Having a decent online menu is also important. People want to know what they can order. Ensure your menu is easy to access on mobile and there are descriptions of what each item is.
7. Track Your Progress
It isn’t easy to market common restaurants. You don’t want to spend all your time on marketing when your focus is on food and customer service.
If you set up tracking so you have an overview of where most of your customers find you; you can spend more time on that aspect of your marketing plan. Don’t want to waste time on one lead generation method that only brings you a couple
of customers a month! Local SEO provides measurable results you can count on to drive revenue.
8. Audit Your Restaurant’s Website
In order to improve your local SEO and domain authority, you need to audit your current website status and see where you stand in local directories. Scroll to the end and enter your domain for a free audit.
Get Started With Restaurant Marketing and a Local SEO Strategy
Now you have many ideas about how to market your restaurant, it’s time to get started.
Trial and error will help you understand which elements of restaurant marketing work best for your business. Just make sure you have a listing on Goole My Business, as it’s the easiest way for people to find you!
If you don’t have time to do all this yourself, get in touch. Our professional team will improve your online visibility in no time.