Many of the restaurant websites out there today are big on flash and little on substance or quality, and that is hurting their business. Having loud music that starts playing as soon as a visitor arrives to the site without a way to turn it off, difficult navigation, and fuzzy photos of food are just some of the problems that website restaurants suffer from today. People know they need to have a website, but they simply have no idea what goes into making a good site. Fortunately, you can fix these things and get your website into stellar shape.
1. Clear and Simple Navigation
When a customer comes to your restaurant website, they do not want to be greeted with useless information on the front page, and they do not want to have to turn off videos and music that you have on the site. They want to know about the type of food you serve, your hours, your location, and the menu. You need to make sure the navigation for the site is simple, and that it is easy to get to all your pages with a click or two.
This does not mean your website needs to be boring. It can and should have personality. However, you can add personality in your text and photos. You never want to have eclectic navigation or extraneous features on the site that distract people from their original purpose of visiting.
2. The Right Color Scheme
When developing a website, you need to think carefully about the color scheme that you are using. Colors can do several things. They can help with your branding for starters. The colors can also help to make the site easier to read. If you have ever tried to read red text on a green background or vice versa, you know it is nearly impossible. You want everything to be as easy for your visitors as possible, and you also want their experience to be comfortable. Use complementary colors that go well together and always make sure the text is legible and large enough for people to read without trouble.
It’s best if your overall website theme is just a few colors, not every color in the rainbow! You don’t have to limit yourself to these colors, but you don’t want to have so many colors that they become distracting. Consider the overall aesthetics of your site, and err on the side of simplicity rather than extravagance.
3. Good Locally Targeted Content
You should have good content on your site that targets the local area. This simply means using the name of the city or town where the restaurant is located, as well as the neighborhood. This helps to improve SEO, and it allows people who are looking for a restaurant in your area to more easily find yours when they are searching through Google or one of the other search engine sites.
Your pages should all have your location information on them, along with your phone number. The site should also have an about us page, where you can go into more detail about your restaurant and its history and mission. You can also add geotargeted content to that page, as well. You should have a menu on the site, and perhaps some descriptions of your most popular dishes.
However, you do not have to stop there when it comes to content. You can add a blog and continually add fresh content at least once per week. This will make the search engines love your site even more. You can create an array of different content for your blog. You could add information about some of the employees, contests at the restaurant, things to do in the area, specials you might be running, and more.
4. Great Photos Are Essential
Pictures are vital to any restaurant website, but many do not add enough photos, or they utilize low quality images thinking that they are “good enough”. If you want to get customers through the door, they need to see what you offer. This means you need to have images of the dishes you serve. You do not need to have a catalog of everything that you make, but having some highlights that can go along with the menu is a great way to whet the appetites of hungry people looking for a place to dine.
In addition to the photos of the food, you should have some photos of the restaurant inside and outside. You might also want to have some photos some staff members. Just make sure all the images are high-quality and that they add to, rather than detract from, the site. If you do not have the capacity to take high-quality images (most phones these days take amazing, great high quality pictures!), hire a photographer who can do it for you.
5. You Need to Have a Mobile Site, Too
Today, many people are looking up restaurants while they are already out and on the go. They use their phones or tablets for this, and that means you need to have a mobile website, or a responsive website, for those guests. The customer should have a good experience, with easy navigation, no matter what device they are using to view your site. If you do not have a mobile site, it could be cutting down on the number of visitors to your restaurant. It is no longer just a good idea to have a mobile site; it is essential.
Here’s a bonus tip for the digital age that can help your restaurant business. Make sure you are a part of the major social media sites, and get active with your fans and followers. It is a great way to build loyalty to your restaurant and to get more people coming back to your restaurant.
Make sure you look at your website with a critical eye and consider the tips in this article so you can see just where you need to improve it. Make your website better and see just what a difference it can make.