Friday, May 4, 2012

3 Must Haves on Your Restaurant Mobile Website


Mobile websites are meant to provide users with only the information they are looking for when they are on the go. Many restaurant goers decide where they'll eat while out doing activities with friends and family, and you want your restaurant's website to rank high on search results and deliver an optimal user experience once they arrive. Google recently stated that 66% of all local searches were for restaurants, making it more critical than ever in order to reach those that are looking for your business.

After researching the top searched items, both online and mobile, we have determined there are three must-have pieces of content on your mobile website in order to differentiate it from your competitors. These are the items users indicated are most useful when deciding where they will have lunch or dinner. 

1. Online menu - Consumers want to be able to research products and services before they purchase, and this is no different when they select a restaurant. The top searched items were for products, services, and menus, so it is important to have a sampling of your menu available for search. You can also add daily or weekly specials to the website which keeps content fresh and improves search optimization (SEO).

2. Turn-by-turn directions - This seems fairly straight forward, but many restaurants don't include this on their mobile websites, and traditional sites on the mobile are almost impossible to navigate maps and directions, especially if they are in Flash. One of the unique benefits of a mobile website is the ability to add your restaurants location coordinates on the site and give the users the option to plug it into their map function on the phone. From there, they will receive turn-by-turn directions to your location.

3. Click to call/Text to reserve - Another must-have on your mobile website is the ability for customers to reach you quickly and easily. This can be done with a click to call button that connects them to you with one touch. Restaurants can go one step above an integrate SMS or an online reservation system in their mobile website to allow customers to research, review, and reserve their dinner plans within a few minutes.

These are the foundations to an effective mobile website. In order to create a unique and effective mobile website for your restaurant, it is important to look at your goals and determine what additional functionality should be added beyond the basics to reach your customers. It is clear that consumers are searching, the question now becomes, "can they find you?"

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