Trying to get customers into your restaurant can be a challenge with all the competition. However, there are many marketing strategies that are available to you, some of which are being neglected by many small businesses across the nation. One strategy that many restaurants are not using is taking advantage of local search marketing to draw customers in. People are now using search engines to find businesses in their local area, so this is the perfect way for restaurants to bring in new customers and become a dominant force in their niche.
To implement this strategy, you want to start by getting your website and business information listed in as many channels as possible. You can register your business at Google Places, Yahoo Local, SuperPages, YellowPages, and review sites like Yelp and other local directories. There is a much bigger list, but the point is that you want to get on as many sites as possible. You can post many things on these sites, which is highly encouraged. Add your business description, hours of operation, menu, specials/discounts for people looking at that site, and most importantly add photos and images of your restaurant. And in all of these, add as many keywords you are optimizing for as possible to help increase your relevance to and rankings in search engine results.
The second step is to build links to your site from relevant sites. This means you should build links from any sites related to food, cooking, local publications and other restaurants (partnerships). Local search engine optimization is similar to how the results are displayed in the organic results. Links are looked at by search engines as a vote and the more votes you have, the higher you will rank in search engine results. Make sure you figure out what kind of keyword phrases you want to rank for in order to get the anchor text for your backlinks.
The third step is to involve your customers. When you have a happy customer, use that opportunity to ask them to write a review for you at that moment. You may even want to offer an incentive for doing so on the spot. While reviews can boost your rankings and bring you more business, you will receive negative reviews from time to time. Do not respond furiously for bad reviews but rather form a thoughtful response that may help resolve a problem. Sometimes an apology or incentive for bad service can be all that’s needed, but just remember to be upfront and human when replying.
Those are three specific things that you can do to start getting local search traffic for your restaurants. You won’t see results immediately, but if you work on your local search campaign the results should prove profitable. Don’t be afraid to seek professional local search marketing services if you feel that you don’t have the time or knowledge to make local search work. H7JXE432FQTN