As easy as it is to fall in love with food, it is not as easy to get into business in the food industry. Restaurant owners must have patience, tenacity and a lot of capital. They must have a strategy of longevity while at the same time serving food that is liked by the masses.
That’s why it is so important than an online marketing strategy be a useful tool for a restaurant owner, not something to siphon off all the creativity that should be put into the art of food preparation. Here are a few tips to help with the design of your food site.
Include the Basics
Don’t forget key information for visiting customers. In order for one to actually visit your restaurant, he will likely need to know what kind of food you serve (including a menu and images), prices, what the place is like, location (including a map and directions), online reservations, and contact details. Failing to include these will merely result in a frustrated customer.
You know how important atmosphere is to your restaurant. Every detail in your motif, down to the paint color and quality of the table cloths, determines whether your customers will feel relaxed, cozy or sophisticated.
The same principle applies to your website. Make sure that the design conveys exactly the kind of ambiance you want your visitors to experience upon entering your site. Keep your design simple and clean, make sure your content is edited and complete, and make sure that your site’s appearance is appealing to your target audience.
Photographs Are Key
One of the smartest business moves a restaurant owner could take is to select a good, professional photographer to take pictures of his products. Using high-quality equipment, lighting and staging, a decent photographer will take pictures that are guaranteed to make visitors’ mouths water.
Create Depth Using Colors and Texture
Food is a very three-dimensional experience. Trying to convey the sensation of dining at your restaurant through a computer screen will prove challenging, to say the least. To help highlight your food appetizingly, use color and textures in an appealing way. Ensure your font flows with the rest of your graphics. Use interesting borders. Include graphics that hit your target audience and pique their interest.
Create Custom Menus
Many restaurant sites feature scanned images of their menus, but this is unwieldy and unprofessional. Create an interactive, custom menu that offers updated information.
Tell a Story
Remember that your website’s content is telling a story, not just reciting facts. Be sure to include interesting tidbits that might generate interest. For instance, does your restaurant have some interesting history that visitors might want to know about? Do your chefs have noteworthy training? Are you famous for your pastries? If there is any aspect of your restaurant that should be featured on your website, be sure to include it.
If you are in need of inspiration, don’t be afraid to browse the websites of other restaurants for ideas.