Five Ways To Generate Sales On A Restaurant Website
Find out how you can amp up your restaurant's website!
When you own or operate a business, every choice you make can impact your bottom line, your profit, your reputation, and how others perceive your “brand”. With that in mind, are you leveraging your restaurant’s website to its fullest capacity?
In the early days of the internet, a website was generally nothing more than a digital brochure – designed to provide a one-way communication of information, without any interaction or feedback.
Using your restaurant website to engage customers and generate sales leads
Let’s look at a common problem:
Joe’s Cafe wants to start offering evening hours and sit-down table service in addition to their regular take-out menu. They also want to expand their catering services and party platters. They have a simple website with their contact information and menus and a Facebook page, but they think they need more. What can they do?
It’s clear that Joe’s Cafe is looking to ramp up their business by adding some new services and expanding others. If their restaurant website is built on WordPress, they or a WordPress developer can quickly add new pages, call to actions, and contact forms.
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What are some specific things they can do to get the word out about their new offerings?
1. Create new webpages that are devoted exclusively to the new services
This means a separate page for catering and large, pre-order party-platters and another page that speaks to the menu and ambiance for the dinner-hour menu. Use these pages to highlight the benefits of each such as a kid-friendly dining atmosphere, the availability of booster seats, and a special kids menu. In terms of catering and special group orders, mention special features such as free delivery service, bulk discounts, or early order-placement savings. Be sure to include all relevant menus and contact info on each page.
2. Consider creating an reservation system
Many of our past restaurant clients have used OpenTable.com to accept and manage their online reservations. This online, mobile-friendly service allows diners to search and find their favorite restaurants and make reservations at any time of the day or night. If you’re expecting heavy dinner traffic, an online reservation system can help you plan and manage the flow from kitchen to table in an effective manner that will keep customers happy.
3. Add a Call-To-Action
For catering and large party platters, consider placing a visible “Request More Information” call-to-action on your website. By creating a simple contact form requesting name, email, phone number, and a space for comments, you can capture potentially valuable sales leads, and begin to engage with those expressing interest in your service. Many corporate and individual event planners want to have a variety of food and beverage options to present to their clients. Make it easy for them to get your information and for you to capture theirs!
4. Connect to Social Media
Make sure social media accounts are prominently displayed on the website through icons and live feeds and ensure these accounts are updated regularly. While a Facebook business page is a great start, Joe’s Cafe may also want to consider adding an Instagram account so they can send out photos of their new, mouth-watering menu choices!
5. Keep Customer Service Focus
With all of these new efforts to reach out to new and existing customers, it’s important to make sure that a good standard of customer service is maintained. If you’re asking customers to fill out an online order form, or submit questions via email, be sure you’re monitoring those inboxes throughout the day. The same goes for social media - if friends and followers message you or comment on a post, responding is essential. Even if a comment is negative, ignore the urge to delete it and instead use it as an opportunity to highlight your concern for nothing short of an excellent customer experience. When you take the time to engage with customers in open dialogue, you'll illustrate that valuing your customers is your #1 business priority.