A life without internet? – No thanks! The Internet has become an integral part of our lives today and should be clear to everyone. The same applies to the catering industry. Nowadays, most guests first provide “on-line visits” to the potential restaurants before deciding to have dinner in one of them. That’s why having the right online presence for restaurant owners is very important. The website is one of the best ways to present the culinary restaurant offers in the best light and to make good advertising .

The success of a website depends on several criteria. The three most important are:

  • design
  • content
  • navigation

The design of your restaurant website is the reflection of your gastro service on the net, so it just has to be unique. Good web design gives you credibility and professionalism. A poorly designed website can easily ruin the image of your restaurant on the internet and so you should be careful and let web designers create the internet site for your restaurant profi. Different design on individual pages, unreadable text due to poor contrast, the lack of titles and descriptions, excessive use of animations and graphics, different colors and text fonts are just a few elements that point to poor web design. Check your homepage!If you recognize any of these elements, immediately contact experts who will give your page a new look.

The content of the website is most important to your online visitors. The style and style of the content can increase the success of your website. Also, the placement on the list of search engine results and the number of visitors, or the traffic of the Internet page depend on good or bad content. Good content that promises quality should be able to animate guests and encourage them to visit your restaurant.

Navigation is an important element of any web page. Elements such as header, footer, navigation menu, content and others should have a logical layout on the web page. One can say that a clear and simple navigation is very important for the success of a page. The visitor should not be confused and disoriented, for example when searching the online menu of your business, because as soon as he realizes that he does not find what he is looking for, he will leave your homepage faster than you think.

The success of an internet page does not just depend on the design and content. It is much more important that the information provided reach the right target group.
Even if you have good design, attractive and interesting content, useful information and good offers: an internet site can not attract potential customers if they do not know it exists.

The overall success of a website depends on SEO optimization for search engines. SEO brings you the targeted people to your website and later in your restaurant.

What does SEO mean and why is it so important?

SEO stands for “Search Engine Optimization” , in German Search Engine Optimization .

The fact is that most Internet users without search engines can not get along anymore. People use search engines like Google every day to explore specific topics. There are also searches for restaurants and bars on the internet. The restaurant that convinces the most on the net, has the greatest chance to be visited on Saturday evening by potential guests.

For most search engine users, only results that are displayed on the first page of the search result list are considered credible. The second page of the list is only viewed by a small number of users and the third page opens almost none. 90% of people consider only the first 10 results on the list .

Advertising through your own web site on the Internet is the easiest and cheapest way to market your dishes and services.

Every restaurateur needs to know that web pages are not just advertising on the internet for the big and famous restaurants and chain restaurants. For owners of small catering establishments that do not have a high profile, it is very important to have a high quality and well optimized website.

The leader through the SEO for Restaurant

You do not have to be a genius to realize that SEO search engine optimization is very important when talking about the prospects for the success of the restaurant website. The most common cause of a failed web project is a bad SEO. If you have no online guests in the present time, despite good restaurant offers and service, then unfortunately you will eventually fail. SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is very important for the success of your website: Good SEO brings you the visitors to your website and later to the restaurant.

The optimization of a website can be divided into two categories:

  • OnPage optimization and
  • OffPage optimization.

OnPage SEO for Restaurant

Onpage optimization is done directly on the restaurant website so that it can achieve a better ranking in the search engines. Onpage means that the contents and technology are optimized on the own homepage in such a way that search engines can analyze and evaluate the website optimally.

Define your keywords (keywords)

The first and most important step in SEO (Serach Engine Optimization) is to find the right keywords and phrases for optimizing the homepage.
Choosing the right keywords (popular words that people type into the search engine) is not an easy task. It makes no sense to be at the top of the list for certain words if those words do not “google” your potential guests at all. On the other hand, it is dangerous to immediately try to optimize the web page for certain, strong keywords, knowing that the competition for these keywords is great.

Keyword tool like Google AdWords can help you choose the right keywords for your restaurant page. We recommend this Google service when planning keywords for website optimization. First, write down all the important keywords on a piece of paper that you find interesting and describe your catering business – Google AdWords will suggest the best solution for your business.

After you’ve defined the keywords, it’s important to make sure that the keywords you’ve selected are in the following parts of your homepage:

  • Domain Names: The perfect keyword hidden in the domain name can certainly improve the ranking in search engine results. Think good, is it even possible to put the keyword in the domain name? Can you even register the name of the website keywords including restaurant name? (eg www.pizzerialuigi.de)
  • Title Tag: Usually, the <TITLE> tag is in the upper right corner of the browser because visitors to the site first notice this part of the site. Title tag (page title) should be able to clearly describe the content of the website, of course, with included keywords. The title tag is one of the three most important elements of the website. (besides meta description and page content). For the title tag, it is important to note that it does not have more than 70 characters. The formula for a good title tag is: main keyword – another keyword – the name of the restaurant
    (eg Pizza Delivery Restaurant – Stuttgart Mitte – Luigis Pizzeria)
  • Meta description: The meta-description is the first indicator of the content of the website in search engine results. Meta-Description is a short description of the restaurant, which should not contain more than 160 characters and should present the restaurant offer in the best light. Meta-Description emphasizes the contents of the page, on the Google Search list. A short, high-quality meta-description of your website will help Google to understand what your website is about.

A Google Search Example – Title Tag and Meta Description:

  •  Content: The content should be original because search engines like Google do not like duplicate content. Google prefers content that is trusted, interesting, original and useful. In order to get a better ranking, you have to make sure that the content of your homepage is high quality and that the keywords in the content are selected and set correctly. Spelling and grammar should be flawless, and the writing style unmistakable.
  • Old and Title Tag: You certainly know that photos are very important on a restaurant website. Good images on the website of the restaurant can increase sales by 25 to 35%, so it is of great importance to also optimize the images of the decorative dishes. After the image has gotten a title tag, it is essential to add an alt text to it as well and to deposit there a readable and short description of the image with the most important keywords. (Luigi’s Restaurant – Italian Restaurant – Pizza Margarita). If this process has been done correctly, then the optimized images will help in positioning the site.
  • Navigation menu: The navigation menu should be able to link all pages of the homepage correctly and simply, so that the visitors have no problems with the orientation. The links to the other pages (eg online menu) should also have the appropriate keywords. It is important to make sure that the visitor to the website gets everything he wants to see in 2-3 clicks.
  • Blog: Writing and running a blog is not an easy thing, but considering how important a blog is for placement on Google and marketing, you should really think about running a blog. What matters is unique content. You can write everything about your restaurant in a blog: About the offer, the competition, incoming events, about your staff, the ambience … everything. It is important to present the restaurant in the best light in the blog. Do not forget to use the right keywords, but you have to be careful that you do not overdo them. Pay attention to spelling and style and avoid copied content in any case. Now you just have to find enough time to run a blog.

Offpage – SEO for Restaurant

The offpage optimization is SEO (Search Engine Optimization) which is done outside the website to better rank in search engines. External links, ie links from other sites, are essential for a good ranking of your website. The number and quality of links is the most important external ranking criterion. Each of these links, however, is rated differently by the search engines. So it may be that a page with only a few, but for high quality or strong references, is listed higher than a page with many, but rather weak links.
The links of your web page on social networks, other web pages with similar content, in comments, in blogs and forums, bookmarking, YouTube and so on, are the offpage optimization.

  • Social media networks: Social media networks and search engines are now working together. The use of social networks has a major impact on the search engines and you should definitely optimize the active profiles in social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter and the like. Make sure that the About Us section of social media is filled with important information about the restaurant and its keywords. Address, Internet address, e-mail address, phone number and other important information about the restaurant by no means in the “About us” description. The content – Posts (pictures, videos,Offers, Planned Events, Marketing …) posted on social networks should also include keywords to make SEO (Serach Engine Optimization) optimization a success. Always create posts that your social media fans feel like sharing these posts with their friends. The more your link is shared on the web, the more successful the web page becomes.
  • This time we will separate Google Plus from the other social networks, because who likes Google Plus more than its creator? If you still do not have a restaurant profile on Google Plus, then the time has come to create one. Sign up for Google+ Local Business and provide as much information as you can about your restaurant and restaurant offerings. Use the possibility of the new profile: add links that lead to your website, links to your blog or other social media networks. Spend about 15 minutes a day on this social network, and Google will reward you by putting you in a good position on Google Search.
  • If you use social media networks on a daily basis, HootSuite will help you manage them much more easily, saving valuable time. With the help of HootSuite you have a direct view of all profiles on social networks and this service also allows you to send message at a specific time during the day. The free version of HootSuite Service will help you to see which of your tweets and posts have attracted the most attention from your fans, and at what point in time is the profile visited. Not bad!
  • Forum Backlinks – The right forum can give you a lot of backlinks and new website visitors. You have to become an active member and authority in the right forum, and new guests in the restaurant will not be missed.
  • Include the local bloggers: Ask the local bloggers who write about the hospitality industry, hospitality and cooking, write a short article about your restaurant and all it has to offer. As a thank you, you can give the blogger or blogger a free dinner. An article about your restaurant on another website will improve your search engine ranking.
  • Social bookmarks: The term social bookmarking refers to the public administration of favorites, ie preferred websites. If you want to bring your page further under certain search terms, then do a link building. If articles are to be listed as quickly as possible at short notice, bookmark entries are exactly the right choice. Since the social bookmarks are constantly being re-evaluated by countless members, the ranking within these lists indirectly also plays a role in the ranking.
  • Register your restaurant with Yelp, Tripadvisor, and Opentable , and get a better seat on Google’s results list. At these specialized web portals, guests can rate your restaurant and leave comments. That can be very important for your business.
  • GooglePlus – Local Places for Business is also important to Google List results. Since 72% of searches are site related, you need to be 100% sure that your site will appear on the list when searching for restaurants in your area. Google Plus Local Places allows your potential guests to find your restaurant and get all the important information in one place: address, phone number, opening hours, availability of parking …
  • Google Photos – Virtual Tour – is another Google-like service. The most important thing, besides the effective marketing that this tool has to keep in mind, is that the virtual walks through your restaurant extend the duration of visits, and that in turn is recognized by Google and rewarded with a good ranking.
  • Google author: If you write interesting blogs and have interesting content on the website of your restaurant, then you should connect your content to Autorship Google Plus profile. If you want your copyright information to appear next to your content in search results, you’ll need a Google+ profile with a photo that makes it easy to spot. Then connect your content to your profile to verify your authorship.

Analyze your website

Never forget that Internet marketing is important to your hospitality business . There’s no need for SEO experts to spend a lot of money optimizing your site, because there are many great free website analysis tools in the online world.

Google Analytics for SEO

The SEO reports in Google Analytics provide Google Web Search performance data related to the website you set up using Google Tools. Use this data to identify opportunities for your restaurant and to prioritize ways to increase traffic to your site. The Analytics SEO reports compare Google Search impressions and clicks for your website with other Analytics traffic sources, such as paid AdWords impressions and clicks. Thanks to this tool, SEO experts are not essential.

Direct online analysis of the website

Analyze your website and the blogs you publish on. Just enter the URL of the page you want and a detailed analysis of the site will be done in seconds. The analysis points to possible side problems and provides solutions to errors by pointing to things that could be improved. Use of keywords, the number of links on the page, the length of the meta, forgotten ALT tags on the images, … everything is hinted! Use this free service and soon you can expect a better result in the search engines.

Is SEO 100% reliable method for a better rating?

Definitely yes, but what the best SEO method is, nobody knows except Google. The fact is that a constant race between Google’s programmers and SEO consultants is ongoing. SEO methods that produced good search results in one season were already invalid in the next one.
In addition, the entire SEO process and online marketing can go wrong and make no sense if the lyrics are not good and the webpage has a bad design. My advice is: Optimize your homepage for the search engines, please be careful and do not exaggerate. Your restaurant homepage must remain natural . Remember, people will visit your site and read its content, not robots.