Tuesday, May 22, 2012

"Should My Restaurant Have a Website?"

I get these questions all the time. The answer is emphatically, YES! The real question is why wouldn't you have a website for your business, whether it's a coffee shop, a bowling alley, a fine dining establishment, a 5 and dime store...? Who doesn't look online for restaurants and retail, even services, organizations... from apples to zebras...? Who doesn't look for the operating hours and location, let alone the menu, pricing, online reservations...?

But, you still need to be convinced. Look at it this way... there are several reasons for a website.

The main reason to have a website is to have a 24/7, 365 days a year presence and a point of contact for your potential clients and customers. In this day and age without a website, people looking for your products or services will search the internet and find you in addition to your competitors who have a website.

Secondary reasons to have a website are:
  1. To provide information about your place, much like a brochure, with the advantage of cheaper and quicker updates than printing, and with more comprehensive information.
  2. To visually (with images and/or testimonials) showcase your business and reach wider audiences at no increased cost to you.
  3. To offer an invitation and provide an easy way to contact you for more information.
  4. To present a professional image which helps you look bigger than you actually are and give you the credibility that you deserve.
That said, you wonder about the cost. This varies so much that it is definitely worth the time to look into it. If you know someone that can design it for you, that may be the least expensive. You can look at other websites and at the bottom it often gives the name and link of the company that designed it. Here's an example: tinositalianbistro.com  So, by all means check out your options without delay and within a month or 2 you will have a website where more customers will find there way to your fabulous establishment! And when they come offer them an incentive to come back like a frequent customer card or multi-use business card...

Be sure to have a business card. You can use them for multi-purpose cards to hand out specials and coupons, or have a freebie for your regular customers.

Bottom line is creative and reasonably priced advertising to get the word out about your place through the media. Facebook pages work nicely too because your fans leave great comments.