If you are the proud owner of any small business, chances are you’ve taken some leaps of faith to get where you are. This is never more true than in the case of the independent restaurant. The restaurant industry comes with many special challenges because the startup cost is high, competition is fierce, and it’s rare that the passionate chef or restaurateur who starts one is also a marketing expert.
Despite these challenges, many small independent restaurants do make it in the industry. And while the recipe for success is hard to generalize, good marketing is bound to be a key ingredient.
Be active on social media
Note that this headline is not “have social media profiles”. Setting up a restaurant Facebook page or Twitter account is fantastic, but only if you dedicate a staff member to maintaining it. People love to communicate with the brand they like on Facebook, and as social media continues to grow in popularity, so do people’s expectations for responsiveness.
Keep an eye on local profiles
A great way to bring more people in the door – and help more people find you website through search sites – is through local profiles. If you haven’t already, now is the time to set up profiles on sites like Yelp, Yahoo!, and Google Local. You may find that your restaurant is already listed, in which case you’ll want to claim that listing so you can monitor your profile closely.
Have an attractive and functional website
A great website is key to growing your business. Not only will it help people find you through searches, it also makes new patrons more likely to visit your restaurant. People want to be able to see pictures of your food, read your menu, view your interior, and even make a reservation. If you don’t have a website, or it doesn’t offer these features, a lot of people will book at a restaurant that does instead.
From the blog:
- Learn more about search engine optimization for your website.
- See an example website from a Webs user with a catering business.
- Find out more about how social media can help bring you more business.