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What Makes a Great Restaurant Website?

Oct 29, 2020

What makes a great website? Well, that depends on the type of website. Is it a world news site, an online apparel store, or a how-to blog? Each kind of website has its own standards because every audience is unique. An eCommerce shop’s ultimate goal is to get a visitor to complete a purchase whereas a restaurant’s web presence aims to entice phone orders and reservations. As foodservice consultants, we want to go over best website practices as it relates specifically to the restaurant industry. Now is a great time to review your website for areas of improvement!

 

Restaurant Website Audit

As we mentioned, each industry is different, and with its own objectives, will have respectively different looking websites. However, there are general best practices all websites should follow and we will cover those as well. Take a look at our list and note where your site may be lacking or excelling.

 

Menus: Both your restaurant menu and the actual website menu should be easy to find and use! After all, people are coming to your site to learn more about your offerings. Your navigation should include an up-to-date menu (including seasonal items). Also avoid publishing your menus in PDF format and instead opt to use HTML text and images.

Don’t overcrowd your navigation with too many choices and don’t forget to showcase enticing, high-quality food photos throughout the site, not just on the menu page. We love how Toppers Pizza does this.

Contact: Include contact information and your location address. Sounds obvious, right? We can’t overstate the importance of making this information readily visible for your potential guests. The phone number, physical address, and your mobile ordering page should be prominent or easy to find. Make sure they are on your site’s main navigation. If you’re on social media (which you should be), let it be known!

Offers: Give ‘em the goods! Do you have special offers for the season? Any promos in exchange for their email sign-up? Got a hot, new mobile-app you want to promote? Get the word out there on your website!

On-Brand: The colors, font types and copy on your website should be consistent with your brand. Keep in mind balancing background and font colors as they should be easy on the eyes.

COVID Response: The pandemic is still here it’s a reality we’re all learning to live with. Safety measures are critical during these times and you need to let your audience know how your company is responding. Are you offering curbside-pickup as well as limited indoor dining? Let your guest know.

Mobile-Friendly: Why should your website be mobile friendly? In the second quarter of 2020, more than half of website traffic came from mobile devices (excluding tablets). You’ll want your site’s content to fit a mobile screen so content is easy to see and read. Further, it is important to make your website accessible to those with disabilities. Here are some tips from Search Engine Journal on how to do just that.

avoid slow website loading

Loading Time: Nothing is much more of a turn off than a slow-loading website. Don’t lose site visitors because your site takes too long to load! Check your site speed using a tool like Google’s Page Speed Insights or GTMetrix. Type in your site address and there will be a report and  recommendations that can be shared with your website administrator

SSL Secure: In the current data-age, digital security is of utmost importance. Getting your site an SSL certificate is a great way to ensure information entered on your site is encrypted and secure, lending your visitors peace of mind. Plus it can help with SEO (Search Engine Optimization). Remember also to establish a privacy policy so visitors can know how their information will be used.

 

Your web presence needs to accurately reflect your brand and values! While this is not an extensive guide, we hope you find this helpful to see how your website measures up.