Is your restaurant Google-friendly?
A chunk of your customers aren’t looking at your restaurant offerings on your website—they're viewing it through a Google page. This list will help you get your Google business page in tip-top shape.
Did you know that 86% of people look up the location of a business on Google Maps before visiting it? This means that when those potential customers are researching your restaurant, they’re not seeing your site—they’re looking at your Google profile. Review this checklist to see if your Google presence is up to par.
1. Create a Google Business Profile
If you haven’t created a business profile for your restaurant yet, you’re missing out on something big. Registering your business with Google is a completely free way to advertise to a local audience that is actively looking to make a purchase. In fact, 90% of consumers research restaurants online before visiting them, an exercise done in this industry more than any other.
If you’ve already claimed your business, great! The next step is to check your profile for accuracy. Verify that important details like hours, location and contact information are correct, as this is likely where customers are going for this information.
2. Amp up SEO
Google uses local search technology, meaning if you enter, “Mexican food near me” into the search bar, Google will return restaurants in your geographical area. To help Google identify exactly what your restaurant offers, you’ll want to add a description to your profile. Include keywords such as the type of food you serve (like Italian) or the atmosphere (e.g., casual), or any other information your ideal customer might be searching for. Adding keywords will help search engines—and in turn, potential customers—find your restaurant.
3. Link to your menu
Google Maps uses on a combination of star ratings, reviews, user-generated photography and machine learning to create a visual menu of your restaurant. While this feature is very cool, it doesn’t give business owners control of which dishes are being highlighted, and there is plenty of room for user error.
Instead of relying on Google to decide which of your dishes are best, you can change your settings so that the menu button links directly to your ordering page; that way, you know your customers are getting accurate information and can view all your restaurant has to offer.
With a modern point of sale (POS), it’s easier than ever to create an ordering site for your business. Your macro site is synchronized with your in-house POS, meaning you don’t have to worry about setting up a completely new stream of order intake.
4. Upload photos
Today’s consumers place value in doing their own research before investing any of their time and money, which makes sense in a world where there is so much uncertainty. Customers want to know what to expect, from the quality of the food and dining space to the parking situation. Adding visually helpful photographs to your Business Profile will give users the information they’re looking for.
Use data gathered from your POS to choose which aspects of your restaurant to feature. By keeping a record of past transactions, POS software can generate reports for top-selling dishes, favorite staff or even preferred tables to sit at. These are the facets of your business that your guests already love, so spread the word with compelling images of your business (inside and out) and your top performers.
5. Add health and safety attributes
Before 2020, loyalty was considered the most important measure that consumers used to evaluate businesses. Now, it’s actually safety that has become the new loyalty; customers are looking for clear information about the health and safety protocols of the places they’re planning to visit.
Google now allows business owners to include information about safety and wellness guidelines, such as mask requirements and temperature readings, for the benefit of both the customers and staff.
6. Add pickup and delivery options
When it comes to delivery, 70% of people in the U.S. would rather order directly from a restaurant than use a third-party delivery service like DoorDash or Bite Squad. What this means is that you should provide a clear path for customers to find your ordering options.
Google makes it easy for consumers by offering a one-click button that takes them from your Google profile to your in-house (or preferred) pickup and delivery service. Enable ordering attributes on your Business Profile—you can even add a button for booking a reservation.
7. Address poor reviews
It’s no secret that having a good rating is key to earning and keeping diners. In fact, 53% of customers say they expect businesses to respond to negative reviews within a week, with 33% expecting three days or less. This high expectation for response changes the way people read reviews; they’re now also scrutinizing responses. Respond quickly to unhappy reviewers and you might just turn a negative review into a positive one.
With a modern POS, it’s easy to reimburse those particularly dissatisfied customers, too. Tools like gift card creation and partial returns can keep returning customers happy.
Strengthen your customer relations and marketing inputs with these POS merchant services.