- by Alex Alper |
- December 28, 2020
- Restaurant Marketing | 8 min read
Google My Restaurant: Improving SEO to Increase Sales
A lot of restaurants’ success relies on standing out in an oversaturated hospitality market while staying within budget and building a strong, distinct brand. Many rely on Google My Business to highlight the tiny distinctions that make each restaurant unique in a way that aligns with how, and what, customers search for on the internet.
At its most basic, Google My Business is a free tool for restaurants to appear as a relevant result on the traditional search engine as well as Google Maps, whose location services ascertain show you to new customers who fall within your delivery radius and who will visit-in-person when sit-down services reopen to full capacity once again.
What is Google My Business?
Just as foot traffic guides new customers inside your restaurant when they see it from the street, so do search engines act as the online version of that: With competition lining the proverbial road on either side, you’ll want to be ranked highly by relevance on the most popular search engine with your customers by far, to increase the likelihood they’ll notice and click on your website when they go to search “seafood near me” or “cheapest pepperoni pizza.”
Google My Business ranks by relevance so it’s so important to fill in as much of your information as you can to fit what customers search and what they want. You can add or leave blank as much as you want, but most businesses fill in this generic information:
With Google My Business, you can choose which website to link to on the search engine so even if you have a regular website landing page, you can send customers right to your online ordering platform instead. Opening delivery and takeout options can be costly and take the time that, frankly, you might not have so many months into a pandemic: Many restaurants rely on third-party delivery platforms as a quick way out to get their name to a pre-existing customer base without having to shell out for couriers, advertisements and a new landing page for their website. With eatOS, we offer a personalized, branded merchant app that comes at no commission so you get all the perks of third-party delivery but keep all the profits you so rightly earned.
Photos are the first thing businesses forgo when revitalizing their online presence in a compressed time frame, but pictures are shockingly important. Good, high-resolution photos of your best dishes can convince guests to add that food to their ticket when they might not otherwise choose to do so; pictures of happy customers translates the mood of your restaurant through a screen; show off the perks of the rooms people can rent for events or display a clear picture of your storefront to help them find your restaurant in person when the world reopens again.
Some restaurants link to their reviews too. Many customers will search out evaluations before they try a new restaurant for the first time, so save them time by directing them straight to websites that have a positive bent in your favor. Of course, you can’t avoid bad reviews: But honestly, bad reviews can be good too, and customers will largely appreciate the transparency as well as quickly scrolling to find out if your ambiance fits their current mood.
Manage Google My Business
Some things do come easy. Google My Business is a crucial platform for any restaurant looking to stay afloat during these hard times, but it’s easy to learn and accessible for interested parties.
First, claim your listing to confirm with Google that you own your business. Just search your name and apply for a claim, or fill out similar forms to add the business to Google or request ownership of a title that’s already been claimed. Next, you have to fill out all of that relevant information that we mentioned in the previous section: Your website, hours, high-res photos, categories, and more. Just make sure you’re updating your information regularly when things change. Make sure your hours reflect the truth for different holidays, take down photos of food you don’t serve any longer, change your URL if your site moves, and generally keep this all up to date because you never know when someone new is going to look you up.
Everything you fill in here will show up across Google wherever people come by your brand. You can shorten your radius to only appear within a confined area where you get walk-ins or offer delivery because along with the Knowledge Graph and generic searches, Google Maps shows your location too so customers can quickly map the distance to their house. Include your phone number, website, and general contact information for easy communication. Honesty, transparency, and detail are the surest way to bring up your SEO ranking and sustain it for the future.
eatOS is here to help you open an online ordering platform without the hassle. Book a demo today and learn how we’ll make restaurant management simple.
Answers, advice and everything about the restaurant business.