This article tackles the topic of local SEO and addresses the Restaurant industry. It provides you with real life figures collected through our clients from this field. From the digitalization to the optimization of your online visibility, we give you some best practices on how to increase your online performances.
#1 Increase of online actions
Due to the huge increase of Internet use and traffic, local businesses have to adapt to customers’ new habits. Nowadays, clients tend to go more online to choose or check information about a business. We noticed for our mass catering clients, a threefold increase in the number of discovery searches per month; they went from 550k to 2.9M between 2018 and 2019.
Moreover, Google My Business provides us with some figures about the number of actions on restaurants’ listings. Those figures are interesting to understand how your clients search for you, and which actions are taken from your listings.
Some vocabulary to understand the above picture:
- Indirect searches: searches not directly targeting Partoo
- Direct searches: Searches clearly mentioning our brand
- Itinerary requests: Internet users clicking on the “Directions” button to get itinerary from google maps
- Phone calls: People calling from the phone number on your Google My Business’s listing
- Click on the website: How many people clicked on your website pages.
We notice that most of us go online before going to a restaurant to check the menu, reviews left by customers, or even to find the address. That is why having reliable information about your restaurants is a key factor to increase your web-to-store traffic, considering the impact it has on the client’s decision.
Moreover, as for every industry, reviews are becoming increasingly important for both customers and businesses.
The data below provides evidence of how reviews become more and more important; between 2018 and 2019, reviews left by restaurant increased by 77%, and 17% of them were answered, against a 5% response rate in 2018.
#2 Increase your online visibility
In order to increase your online visibility, you have to follow different steps. But know that having created listings for each of your shops and providing basic information such as your business’s name, address, phone number and a few pictures already boosts your online visibility.
In case you don’t have listings for all of your businesses, you should:
- Request the ownership of a business profile if someone else is owning it, or if no one owns it
- Create your missing Google My Business listings so that each of your local business has one
- Delete any duplicates you can find
In addition, you should diffuse your information on as many platforms as you can, such as directories and GPS (Waze), Social Media (Facebook) and search engines (Google).
In order for your businesses to appear higher on search results, you need to add your main business’s category. You can also add up to 9 other sub-categories. That way, if a user types in “Fast food restaurant”, they will find you if you provided this information, and you’ll appear higher than other restaurants that did not provide it.
Attributes allow you to describe your business, its services and facilities. You can quickly inform your customers if reservations are required, or if you offer gluten-free options for instance. Adding those details will help you pop up un search results where you weren’t supposed to appear. Let’s say I want to go to a coffee shop “gluten free”, by adding it to your listing, it allows you to match the request.
Moreover, you can use a feature called Google Posts to communicate with your customers about special events, happy hours or discounts; in short, about what is going on in your local business. We recommend you to use the “EVENT” post that remains visible for more than 7 days on Google My Business.
Finally, you should add directly on your listings secondary URLs redirecting customers either to your menu page, or by adding links to place an order or book a table.