Running a successful restaurant is not an easy task, and the fruits of your labor depend on a variety of factors. Quality food and top-notch service with the incentive of loyalty programs and a good location should be enough to get a good share of local customers. But what happens when you hit your local cap? Society Insurance has compiled three tips to help you find new customers for your restaurant and bar.
Prioritize alternative hearing locations
Opening a new location isn’t always feasible, but there are opportunities to target potential customers in certain geographies. Start by researching a cluster of venues and identifying the potential size of audience and competition in those areas. Once you’ve identified your priority locations, consider the following tips:
Create landing pages
Creating specific landing pages with a map, call-to-action, and copy tailored to the respective locations can help your website rank for those related keywords without sacrificing the focus of the rest of your website.
Add locations to Google
Your Google My Business listing has a section dedicated to service areas where you can plug in additional target locations. This will help your restaurant or bar show up in search results for IP addresses in those areas.
Take a road trip
If you can, consider hitting the road with a food truck or attending foodie events, like the Chamber’s local “Taste of” opportunities, where you can showcase your establishment. This can help increase your brand awareness and visibility.
Position your restaurant or bar for more reviews
It’s common for curious prospects to Google “food near me,” and one of the factors that helps your local ranking ability is reviews. Google is much more likely to show restaurants and bars with positive reviews and ratings than establishments with poor reviews and ratings. While you can’t encourage reviews, you can certainly make the process easier. Make sure your business has links to “See us on Google” on your website, social media platforms, and marketing materials. Ask your staff to encourage happy customers to leave reviews. If you receive a negative review, make sure you have negative review responses ready. For example, it’s best to thank the person for their feedback and push the conversation out of the review platform.
Responding to positive reviews is just as important as negative reviews. Doing so in a timely manner not only makes the reviewer feel valued, but also lets other readers of your reviews (potentially new customers) know that your business is engaged and grateful.
Your best restaurant and bar salespeople are the customers themselves. According to an article by Referral Rock and a study conducted by Talk Triggers, “83% of Americans say that word-of-mouth recommendations from friends or family members make them more likely to purchase the product or service.” It’s important to engage with your customers and get them to share their experience through social media and email marketing.
For example, give a gift to those who tag a certain number of friends, provide coupons for email subscriptions, incorporate engagement opportunities where customers post about their favorite memory at your establishment, and monitor all restaurant labels so you can repost and share, promoting a culture of engagement.