Living in a digitized world, where your restaurant’s web presence is as important as the restaurant itself, you need a strong Search Engine Optimization (SEO) strategy to get your brand at the top of search results. Basically, SEO is used to help your business rank higher with search engines such as Google, by incorporating keywords that your customers are likely to use when looking for the services you provide. As most of your paying customers are people living or visiting your area, you need to have a local SEO strategy, which incorporates keywords associated with the area your restaurant operates from.
Ensure your website is optimized for mobile
Research shows that by 2025, 72% of people will access the internet on their phones. This means that most of your customers will see the mobile version of your website more than the desktop version. Therefore your website should be well designed and optimized for mobile. Websites which are optimized for mobile, rank higher on search engines. Try logging on to your restaurant’s website on your phone and note any items that don’t work properly. If the menu doesn’t come up the way it should or you have difficulty clicking buttons or reading the writing, then you have to make changes. Remember that what you are experiencing, is what your potential customers go through when trying to reach you. If it proves difficult for them, they will exit your site and head over to your competitors.
Update Your Google My Business Page
The top search engine Google makes it easy for businesses with brick and mortar stores to get easily found, through Google My Business. If you haven’t already created a Google My Business page, you may be missing out on getting located by customers. It provides you with the means to let people know what your business is about, as well as share photos and videos of your dishes and interior. In order for the page to be effective, you have to supply the correct contact details including the address of your restaurant. This is essential because when someone searches for places to eat in your area, your restaurant will come up, and Google Maps will show your location, as well as many places of interest nearby. In instances where your customers are visiting a local place of interest, they may decide to dine at your restaurant, judging by the proximity between where they are going and where your restaurant is situated.
In addition to updating your Google My Business page, ensure all the platforms you use for your restaurant have the correct contact details and address. This includes your social media pages as well as the review sites that you are listed on. Encourage your customers to leave reviews, as good reviews increase your search engine ranking.
Use the right Keywords
When deciding which keywords to use, put yourself in your customers’ shoes. If you were looking for a restaurant that serves the kind of food that you have, what would you type into a search engine? This should serve as a guide when picking keywords. Most customers would also include their location in their search, so it is good practice to include the name of the area your restaurant operates from. If there are any interesting landmarks or tourist attractions, you may also include them. Tourists may use the names of such landmarks when they are visiting your area and looking for places they could dine.
Enhance the Quality of Your Content
An effective way to increase traffic to your website is to write high-quality blog articles. These need to be informative, unique and easy to read. Although you need to use keywords, avoid needlessly inputting your keywords at awkward places in your article. This will make your articles difficult to read and may hurt your ranking in Google searches. Even though your restaurant may serve the same type of dishes as your competitors, every restaurant is unique. You have a unique start-up story, the way you prepare the dishes may differ from other places and your workplace culture is different. Use these unique elements to tell your story, through engaging content that makes readers stay on your website longer and order their food from your restaurant. Once you’ve written your articles, promote them on your social media pages. Ensure the article promotional posts link back to your website, as this will help with ranking higher on search engines.
A restaurant relies heavily on people in the area it’s located for business and thus needs an effective local SEO strategy. By keeping your contact details up to date across all platforms and using keywords associated with your area, your restaurant may see an increase in search engine rankings and more importantly, a boost in sales.