Your restaurant website is one of the essential parts of your restaurant marketing strategy. Sure, you need to think about Facebook ads for your restaurant while also balancing other activities like email marketing and outreach. Still, when push comes to shove, a website for your restaurant is one of the most important things that you can spend your time on.
The reason that your restaurant website is so important is that your website serves as the go-to spot for potential diners to learn more about your offers and menu. At the same time, patrons go to the website of your restaurant to learn more about events and special occasions.
If you want to reach new diners while also keeping frequent patrons returning, then you need to design your restaurant website with specific items in mind.
Build Your Restaurant Website For The Best User Experience
Whenever someone comes to your website, they should be able to find relevant information about your restaurant quickly and easily. You should put the most crucial information at the top of the page, and only include content that answers questions, like:
- Your restaurant location and phone number.
- A quick reference to your menu (along with nutritional information).
- Upcoming events or specials that people are interested in.
- Links to your restaurant social media accounts to encourage people to share and engage with each other.
Every part of a design for a restaurant website needs to revolve around the needs of customers for your local restaurant. You should think about who your ideal patrons are and then include information, pictures, and other content based on what they need to know before they choose to dine with you.
Along with the user experience, you should also build your website around the goals of your restaurant. Since your website needs to support your restaurant’s success, you should think about the different needs of your restaurant like:
- Are you trying to sell more gift cards?
- Do you want to increase online reservations for an upcoming event?
- Are you focusing on driving more foot traffic to your store?
- Does your team want to increase Sunday Brunch or another time frame throughout the week?
While these questions might seem trivial, they are essential as you set out to build the best restaurant website for local searchers looking for more information about what you offer. Your team needs to think through the needs of local searchers and customers and how they search for dining options while also balancing your restaurant’s business needs.
Let’s take a look at some of the most effective restaurant website design elements that you should include on your site to ensure your audience has a great experience, and you can reach your goals today!
1. Use High-Quality Images Of Your Restaurant & Food
People make emotional decisions when they choose a restaurant, and you need to support your audience by using high-quality images across your website. Not only do high-quality photos reflect position your restaurant as a quality establishment, but these photos also help tell the story of your restaurant before people dine with you.
If you can only afford a professional for one aspect of your website, then you should hire a professional photographer to deliver a core set of images, including your food, staff, and general setting.
Along with high-quality images, you should also post food and events on social media. You don’t need expensive equipment for your social media posts, but you need to make sure that you have good lighting for each shot.
2. Include Reviews On Your Site To Build Trust
Choosing a restaurant may seem like an easy task, but if your restaurant serves high-end or unique experiences, then you need to build trust at each step of the customer journey. As potential diners search the
Internet for reviews of your food and staff, you can include testimonials on different pages of your site to reinforce their decision to dine with you.
Some of the best places to include testimonials in your restaurant website design are:
- Above the fold on your homepage.
- Near Call To Action buttons like “Make Your Reservation” or “Learn More.”
- Relevant testimonials for special events, if those events occurred in the past.
Too many restaurant owners fail to include testimonials on their restaurant website, and this oversight can result in several lost bookings and sales. You should do everything you can to highlight the high time people have in your restaurant while also reinforcing the idea that your restaurant is the best place to dine.
Use testimonials and reviews to have other people sell the benefits of your restaurant today!
You can pull in reviews from different areas like Google My Business, Facebook, and Yelp with advanced APIs, or you can integrate a rotating customer review section in your restaurant website design if you lack developers.
3. Create The Most Important Content For Your Website
A restaurant website is designed differently than sites in other industries because most restaurants are not looking to rank nationally. Instead, if you have a local restaurant, then you need your website to rank high in search engines for your city and region.
Creating content for your restaurant website should help people find answers quickly, improve your site ranking in search engines, and position your restaurant as the best dining choice in your area.
You have a lot to think about as you run your restaurant, so we want to provide a quick list of the essential content your restaurant website needs to have:
This is a no-brainer, as the homepage is often the most viewed page on your site. The job of a homepage is to get people to other areas of your website based on their needs and questions. Be sure to include testimonials and quick access to other areas of your website from the homepage.
If people are looking for a restaurant, then you can assume that they are hungry and looking for great food. You should offer your audience more information about the food you serve. Some restaurants specialize in Farm To Table and Locally Sourced food, and you should include this information on your menu.
As a side note, many restaurants upload a PDF version of their menu to their site and call it good. However, you should not take this approach if you can help it. This is because PDFs require local searchers to download the menu, and this can be cumbersome if done on a smartphone.
Always try to use an HTML version of a menu so people can quickly view your offers without having to download or manipulate the file.
Specials & Upcoming Events
Your customers could choose to cook at home, and when most people want a restaurant to dine at, they are selecting a location based on entertainment and not just food served. This means that you should highlight upcoming events on your homepage and other pages to show the value that your restaurant offers patrons.
Some restaurants offer live music throughout the week, while others focus on events like Sunday Brunch or holidays. Whichever entertainment you submit, you should make sure that your restaurant website design offers information to your audience based on their needs and the unique features of your restaurant.
Drive Business With A Great Restaurant Website
Running a restaurant can be tough, and as a restaurant owner, you need to juggle a lot of responsibilities. However, building a restaurant website should not be one of the things that you worry about throughout the day.
Whether you are looking to build your following on social media or you want to drive more traffic to special events, your restaurant needs a great website to boost performance. You can follow the above tips to improve your restaurant’s income while growing your online presence!