Restaurant Web Design: Visit Decision Signals
Brendan Binger
Founder & Design Director

In this post, we’ll explore consumer user intent in relation to the restaurant industry.

When a consumer visits your website, they are seeking information

You want to be sure that you have that information readily available.

What information?

There are several types of information that a consumer may be seeking when they visit your website. Many of these are standard, but some you may not have considered. Have a look:

  • Hours
    Consumers want to know when you’re open.
  • Price
    The consumer may want to know how much they’ll need to drop when visiting your establishment.
  • Cuisine
    If they are not already familiar, consumers will want to know what type(s) of cuisine you serve.
  • Location(s)
    Consumers need to know where they can find you. Especially if you have multiple locations. You’ll want your regulars to know that they can also find you on the other side of town.
  • Atmosphere
    While you may or may not want to come out and profile the atmosphere of your establishment, this can be very well conveyed through some choice images on your website.
  • Speed
    Here’s one you may not have considered. Consumers may have a fixed amount of time and need to know how quickly they can be in and out.

That’s cool, I guess…

While these points of information may play less of an active role in convincing consumers to visit, their absence can still lead to missed customers. So they are must-haves nonetheless.

You wouldn’t want to miss a large business lunch group because they weren’t sure if they could be finished within 45 minutes.

Making it happen

Most of this information can be quickly and easily included on your website if it is not there already.

The footer is an appropriate place for hours, location(s), and even dining speed. It is a standard design pattern for this information to live in the footer, so users are accustomed to looking for it there.

Pricing can be included in your online menu. (hello online menu design) If that’s not your speed, it can be conveyed through the language used in your bio copy. “We’re an upscale gastro-pub specializing in fine, vintage cocktails” (sounds expensive ?)

Cuisine would be best addressed towards the top of your homepage, through either heading copy or images. If you serve a number of options when it comes to cuisine, be sure to present that fact to consumers.

Atmosphere is best conveyed through images. These would ideally be images of real patrons enjoying themselves in the space. You may want to consider consulting a professional photographer for these images, to ensure that your space looks the best that it can.

Bonus points: if you want to take your atmosphere game to the next level, a short explainer type video with footage of your space would convey your atmosphere even better.

We hope that this post has shed some light on the value of online reservations and how they can benefit your business.

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