Designing an Effective Restaurant Website: Tips and Best Practices

Great designs always form the core of successful restaurant websites. A good digital layout always combines aesthetics and usability in the right proportions. A great web design for a restaurant should focus on the food and also be a perfect combination of aesthetics and usability in order to capture the online market more quickly and effectively.

What makes a picture-perfect dining experience? A pleasant ambiance, delectable dishes and good company make a dining experience memorable. One of the greatest challenges while   designing a restaurant website is to emulate that dining experience and translate it into the digital space.

Despite these restrictions, a restaurant website can still increase customer traffic if it is done right. So, what is the way to attract potential customers, make them engage with the restaurant website and choose your restaurant for their next dining destination?

Restaurantify brings to you some of the best practices that need to be followed while creating a restaurant website.

14 Best Practices For A Restaurant Website Design

Create Good First Impressions

Any good restaurant website has a great homepage. Keeping the homepage attractive is essential as it is the first thing that customers see. People form an idea about your restaurant on the basis of their initial opinion. The homepage should tell customers about the services and products that you offer. Use a simple, straightforward approach in visual presentation. Showcase your cuisine on the homepage itself.

Stimulate The Senses With The Online Menu

For the online menu, use the right photographs. Select words that make the customers drool. Stimulating the senses of the customers will make them order online and give greater online mileage for your brand and menu. Use powerful visuals and professionally shot images for the online menu. Also include shots of the restaurant interiors.

Make The Restaurant Website Mobile Responsive

Since 60% of local searches are done using mobile devices, make your website mobile responsive. Also add Call To Action buttons like ‘Order Now’, ‘Call Now’, etc. along with an interactive map.

Let Customers Know Where To Find You

Since restaurant websites serve as a bridge between the business and the customers, use it as a powerful tool to communicate with existing and potential customers and establish a robust online presence. Let customers know where your restaurant is located and how to get to it. Always keep the address and contact information updated. While existing customers might look for the phone number or email id to make reservations, some others might want to have a look at the online menu or embedded map. So, make all the icons prominent and visible to every visitor.

Add Reviews And Press Partnerships

If your restaurant has been featured in popular magazines and other media, add them to the restaurant website. This provides a sense of authority and credibility. Include several positive reviews and feedback from customers on the restaurant website to boost your online reputation. Creating a hashtag for your restaurant’s followers is also a good way to stream contributions from them on the website.

Add Links To Your Social Media Accounts 

Use the power of social media for advertising and promotion. Include active links to social media pages on the restaurant website. This makes it easy for visitors to find the website on social networks. Restaurants can also add a social feed section on the web template to display the latest Facebook, Instagram and Twitter posts on the site. Social media channels should also be constantly updated.

Prioritize High-Impact Content

Without impactful content, a restaurant website design is incomplete. A person spends nearly 8 seconds on average on a given webpage. So, a restaurant has only that much time to convince the visitor to stay longer on the site and also make a reservation at the restaurant. Use punchy headlines and engaging imagery along with video backgrounds. Generate high-impact content by adding stories or a blog section on the website. Feature your special dishes or make well-known personalities endorse your brand. Include blogs about new cuisine trends, modern approaches and inventions in traditional food. Blogs are a great way to increase traffic using the best SEO practices.

Use Different Types Of Appeal

Provide visitors with a detailed story of your restaurant in the body of the homepage, right below the intro. Use multiple types of appeal. Appeal to utility by telling customers about your hospitality, speedy service or price of a meal. Also appeal to the emotions of the visitors by talking about your professional and ethical business practices, the sources of your ingredients, etc. Using multiple types of appeal within the website will help resonate with different personalities.

Pay Attention To Colors 

Color produces an emotional response in people. It is to be remembered that different colors trigger different emotional responses. Since red and orange stimulate appetite, you will find them on many restaurant websites and interiors, including tablecloths. Black color is associated with elegance and sophistication. Use it if you are an upscale restaurant. One must avoid blue on the restaurant website as it is a color that is not found naturally in food, making customers lose their appetite. Infact, bright blue walls in a restaurant can make your food look less appetizing.

Make The Navigation Seamless, Consistent And Intuitive

Keeping the website’s navigation seamless and consistent is essential so that users find it convenient to get anywhere on the website at any time. The menu should be easy to find, highlight current offers and discounts. If you offer food delivery services, include an order tracking feature so that users enjoy the benefits of live and real-time tracking.

Understand The Difference Between Design And Development 

To build a website, you need both design and development. Make use of free restaurant website builders who provide you the combined advantage of both design and development. If you wish to hire developers for the completion of these two tasks, ensure that you hire both front-end and back-end developers with the necessary skills.

Consider The Domain

A restaurant’s domain will communicate important information to the visitors. Since the visitors must remember the restaurant’s name, ensure that the site URL contains the entire name and not just a portion of it. If you are not able to find a URL that matches your business name, either change the name or find an alternative URL that is able to accommodate your name or complements your name. Use natural sounding names for the URLs and titles.

Search Engine Optimization And Search Engine Marketing 

SEO and SEM campaigns provide great mileage even to small scale restaurants. So, they must not be ignored. Although a considerable amount of traffic comes from review sites like Yelp, you can also find several potential customers by ranking on local search engine searches.

Personality

People are always attracted to restaurants that have a distinct personality. So, it is essential to make the purpose, passion and differences extremely clear on the restaurant website. Narrate your restaurant’s story in a focused, funny and engaging manner.

This blog would have helped you understand the key practices that need to be followed to achieve a restaurant website design that generates traffic, sales, profitability and a robust brand image. To receive more assistance with restaurant digital marketing, get in touch.