Summer is the perfect time to boost your online orders and gain a foothold locally on the web. Families are home for summer break, and mom and dad are all about convenient meals in between summer fun. Now is the time to kick off your summer marketing campaign and drive traffic to your website. Here are 10 tips for making that happen:
1. SEO Still Matters
Let’s start with the basics. Is your website content search engine optimized? You should be pushing fresh content weekly or bi-weekly in the form of a blog or some other content update on your website. When people search for local restaurants with online ordering or delivery, where do you come up in the results ranking?
If it’s not on the first page, you may need an SEO boost. That being said, don’t just scatter keywords into your website’s menu and information section. That turns off both potential customers and search engine algorithms. Start by generating content consistently that uses ranking search keywords organically and naturally.
2. Get Directory and Review Listed
It may be old school, but it’s no less effective in 2018 than it was in 2008. Put your website and social media info up in online directory listings and popular review sites like Yelp! and GrubHub. You will be amazed how much traffic a good listing can generate for your website.
3. Start a Social Media Hashtag Campaign
There is no Internet Commission on The Generation of Hashtags: all you have to do is develop something short, snappy and unique. It’s not the easiest thing ever, but keep an eye on what hashtags are trending on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. Post photos of your place, plates and menu items, and hashtag that content with trending tags and a hashtag of your own creation.
You can also give the old social media discount a try, too: offer eat-in customers a small discount on their bill if they photograph their food and post it on two social media channels using your hashtag and the trending hashtags of their choice. No only does this make that customer feel like a special influencer (and for all you know, they actually are), but it can also give your website a major boost.
4. Landing Pages Are Still a Thing
Believe it or not, a landing page for customers redirecting from social media or search engine results pages is an effective method for boosting your website traffic. If you direct them to a landing page with online ordering specials or discount codes, you are almost twice as likely to convert clicks into sales.
5. Long-tail Keywords Matter
Getting found and boosting your web traffic is all about search ranking on Google and other major search engines. When you are giving your site an SEO makeover or generating fresh content, be sure to include a long-tail keywords in headlines or naturally throughout the content. These more specific search term words have proven to move you up on the results pages quickly.
6. Email Is Not Dead
People still read their email for specials, coupons and discounts, especially since the majority of people access email on their mobile devices. Publish a weekly newsletter about that week’s events and specials, and set those emails to go out during peak meal-ordering times of day, like 10 a.m. or 4 p.m. When you time your email blasts, you will deliver a powerful message at the times of day most people are checking email or getting ready to start their end-of-day routines. The power of suggestion via email is still potent, and your email may be what tips the scales
to ordering takeout that night versus heating up another frozen dinner.
7. PPC Works
There is no shame in using pay-per-click advertising on social media and search engines. It’s easy to set up, and it offers a great ROI.
8. Reach Out to Blogs to Publish Guest Posts
You or your chef can guest blog on local foodie sites or social media pages. Start by reaching out to these groups and ask about promoting your place via a relevant blog post. Not only does it generate content and traffic for these sites, but it also cross-promotes your business. Everybody wins!
9. Engage With Customers Online
When a customer walks into your place, you greet them warmly and make them feel at home. What do you do when a customer posts on your social media or tags you in a posted pic of their meal or special event at your restaurant? These customers are the walk-ins of the internet. Reply to posts, comment on photos congratulating them on their special occasion, and share what they post with positive praise. Everyone loves to have their content re-posted and shared online, and in the age of social media, sharing is the smile and warm welcome you give to every walk-in customer.
10. Check, Study, and Understand Your Site Traffic Data
Keep an eye on your site’s analytics. Learn what the numbers mean, and how to determine if your marketing efforts to drive traffic actually make an impact. Not only is this good business that helps you keep track of your advertising/marketing ROI, but it is also crucial to maintaining your online presence and ensuring you stay relevant.