15 Helpful SEO tips for restaurant
It is hard to imagine any business achieve unparalleled amounts of success in today’s time without having a strong digital presence. To grow as well as to maintain a steady footing in the market. It is essential that businesses nowadays not only have a website but are also working on improving their search ranking as well. Restaurants can also step-up their game by developing their search ranking too. They might make their name with what they present on the table to their customers, but for them to make it big, they need to attract in more customers.
You can boost your website traffic on Google with the help of proper SEO implementation. After spending a couple of days in the research, I came up with 15 in-depth SEO for a Restaurant article which can be applied to any type of restaurant. By implementing these simple tips restaurant, the owner can grow their website traffic and conversions easily.
What is restaurant SEO?
It is the best marketing strategies for local restaurants to rank in the google result page and local map pack. Google is not just a search engine anymore, it has taken the form of a directory where the users can quickly gain access to the best and most prominent businesses in their area. This puts a great deal of pressure on local restaurants to work on their SEO and improve their search visibility.
First thing, make sure the information about your restaurant is consistent such as your business name, address and phone number across all local listing channel. Focusing and your social media channel such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram are important too. Posting and sharing one’s business-related blog post and/or article will help to gain authority. If you optimized your website correctly, then you will be rank and will promote your business seen in SERP (Search Engine Result Page).
Given below are 15 Proven SEO Tips that are sure to be a game changer for your restaurant. With them in place, your business will have a high ranking for a long time to come.
Nothing can be more important to a business than its customers: people who actually are responsible for generating the revenues and making it work at the end of the day. For restaurants to start working on their Search Engine Optimization, you first need to sit and decide on a few key matters at hand.
1.Define SEO Strategy
Decide on the type of audience you plan on targeting. This will give a definite direction to the approach and keep you focused on the target market. Knowing the customers and what they actually want and need is what the businesses need to learn. Making this the prime focus of the SEO is the first step in the right direction the restaurants can take.
Knowing your audience’s search term is the primary and most important part of SEO for a restaurant. Restaurants based keywords depend on 3 types of a keyword which are broad, niche specific and brand related.
Broad Keywords: Most of the mobile users use this search terms for example restaurant in Sydney or Restaurant near me.
For those type of keywords, results depend on the user location. Check how competitive those keywords are based on your business location. If your restaurant is based on Sydney then for “restaurant in Sydney” search term there would be high competition but if you focus on a restaurant in Pitt Street Sydney then there will be low competition because of the area.
Niche Specific keywords:
These keywords are related to your business category for example “Vegan restaurant” or “Indian restaurant Sydney”
Brand related keywords:
If customers are using branding search terms that means they’ve already heard or know about your product or services. For example, The Mulgan restaurant. Even people are using your brand name doesn’t mean that your page will result in the top of the search results. If you haven’t done proper SEO to your websites then your website might be outranked by local directories and a restaurant’s social media pages.
I have use chicken tandoori as an example search which will give you related names. Those suggested results will help you to know if your food is popular among your target audience.
Only afterthought and time have been put into this phase is when the restaurants should worry about the google rankings and giving the search engine what it needs to list you on the top of the search results. Since Google is known for constantly changing and improving its search algorithm, focusing too much on google ranking will not work for long. You need to build your empire on a strong foundation, and this begins by knowing your target audience first. Once you are doing that, validating your business for search ranking would be more comfortable.
It all starts with the content
Anyone who has a remote idea of how SEO works would know how important it is to have good quality content. It makes the website look more relevant and gives it a fair chance to show-up on Google search listings. Therefore, the first thing that you need to do when you work to improve your SEO is to get some good quality content worked up. Ensure a sound content strategy and then stick to it.
One of the most common mistakes restaurants end up making is customizing their website to how a search engine would want to see it. As supposed to what their customers want. Gone are the days when one would write content by stuffing it with keywords. As long as you are writing content that would capture the interest of your audience you are in good hands. This, however, doesn’t mean that you should forego the use of meta descriptions, tags and relevant title for your content. All these things are still very much relevant.
- Brand name sells
Before you begin with the other parts of the SEO, you first need to create a presence for your brand. Having a catchy tagline that will gain attention and become the talk of the town is a must. It is highly recommended that the title or the tagline are the first things your customers should be able to identify and associate with your brand. If things go well, soon, you will have the consumers searching for your restaurants by the name of the brand only
- Geographically relevant keywords
When it comes to keywords, try to find words and phrases that are commonly used by your target audience. This, when coupled with your geographical preferences, will certainly help you find some really high level and useful terms for the keywords. You can also write content based on what your restaurant specializes in to help expand its reach.
- Make your website look authentic
For the customers to find your website authentic, you also need to work on including more of the testimonials and reviews that would help them relate more to what you are offering.
Apart from this, also include your address and a contact number where your customers can reach you out to get more information about your business. This is usually not just limited to the contact us page on the website but appears on the header and footer too. Most of the times, clients have been lost merely because they didn’t provide relevant contact information on their website for their customers. Adding directions on google map will further help your cause here.
- Work on local searching
Before expanding your network, it is essential to get the word out first. Earn a name within the local community and expand your reach. Once you’ve established a name within the community, work on the local searching by adding a local area onto most of the search pages.
Use keywords that are more relevant to local search. Have the directories mention your business and list it as one of the best ones in the area that you are operating in. Focusing on ratings is essential too. Encourage your customers to leave a feedback of ratings after visiting your restaurant.
Begin with Google my business only to proceed to Yelp, TripAdvisor, and other directories. Creating listings on these pages will do wonders for your business. The higher the number of online citations, the better it will be for you.
- Show up on Google maps
Earn a positive reputation and encourage your guest to check-in every time they’d visit your restaurant. Having your store added and pinned on Google Maps provide excellent recognition. It is also automatically suggested once person using the map would search for local restaurants within the area.
Note: Most ranking on the map pack depends on your business category, reviews, citations and use of keywords.
- Menus in text
How many of you are guilty of not ordering from a restaurant just because you were too lazy to open the menu in the pdf viewer? Well, most of the access these websites from our mobiles and don’t even have pdf viewers. Having menus that are easily displayed in a regular text format on the website is practical and will help you be more user-friendly. Doing so will also help the menu appear as a google search listing when the customers would search for something specific that you are serving in your restaurant.
- Keep the descriptions simple
We all like to describe the items that we have created in flowery words but what would be the use of it if your customers can’t even understand the language you are speaking in. This is why you need to keep the descriptions of the menu items fairly simple, yet truly detailed enough to entice your audience.
- Titles that are fun
It has been proven that within two seconds a website can either engage a user or lose their interest. This is why having titles and headings that they can relate is important. Come up with a fun and engaging page that would capture their attention at a glance. It is also advised to use words that are unique to your brand to keep the brand spirit alive throughout the marketing strategy. Focusing on consumer engagement is essential, but maintaining the content quality.
- Mention other businesses
Do you know that Google gives more preference to the websites that list other businesses in their content? This helps create a web and interlinking of the sites that not only validates their authenticity but also helps them rank higher in search listings. Doing so for the individuals and other complementary businesses in your area will prompt them to return the favor, while improving your SEO ratings.
- Avoid content stuffing
Do not focus too much on what you are doing on a single page. Instead, create secondary and tertiary pages to link to the main page where you talk about the other services that your restaurant offers.
For example, most of the restaurants today offer event hosting and catering services. Talking about them on the same page with the food you offer will deviate from the user from the focused area and that is something we do not want.
- Be active socially
Social media is not just for communication anymore. It is home to millions of users that are part of your potential target audience. Not exploring this field will bring a huge disadvantage to your restaurant. Therefore, having an active social media presence is foremost for having quality SEO.
However, being online all the time is not going to be of any use. You need to be active and socially interactive. Respond to the customers’ queries and answer any concerns that they might have. Talk about things and subjects that would gauge their interest and engage them with the content your page is selling.
Organizing contents or coming up with animated videos that would go viral is another way of increasing your brand’s popularity on the social media. With the many analytics tools there to help, you can now determine the efforts which are bringing fruitful results and the ones that need more work. Being able to view the results of your strategies in real-time will allow you to make better SEO related decisions.
- Keep monitoring
This is the key that you need to hold on to. In the world of big data analytics where even Google is offering its own free analytics tools, you can’t just not making use of the opportunity. Try to monitor your activities and analyze your results to understand the response it is generating and the kind of audience it is attracting.
- Be available on smartphones too
Having websites that are mobile friendly and generate the same level of experience on smartphones is another thing customers are looking for nowadays. The website your restaurant has should not only be optimized for desktop use but should work equally well on mobile screens too. It is researched that 60% of the customers don’t even bother with the websites that are not optimized for the mobile page.
- Be consistent
The key here is to not give up. You will not see results within a day or two. It will take time. You just need to focus and study target audience (needs, wants, preference). Keep generating contents will capture their interest and continue to monitor the impact of your strategies. Within a short span of time, you will see things changing for the better for your restaurant.
These tips are not technical but definitely will help in user experience which is one of the main factors of optimization after Google RankBrain algorithm update. With these tips in place, soon you will find your restaurant filled with people day in and out.
However, there is only a limit to what a user-friendly SEO optimized website can do for you. When things get real it will be the food you serve and the attitude of the staff that you have working for you that will count. So, treat your customers right so that you are left with good reviews online and have a strong following on social media too. It is only then that the SEO optimization would actually be helpful for your business.
Regardless of how your website has been ranking so far or how much traffic your website tends to attract on daily basis, you still stand a chance. SEO doesn’t have to be something you do full time. As long as you are authentic and staying true to your brand, the things will continue to fall into place for you.