8 Steps for How to Attract Local Customers
If you know how to market your restaurant locally, you will always have filled seats. Attract local customers to gain the most loyal and frequent table guests. They are a steady source of income for your restaurant business.
Engage your local community and build a solid customer base with these 8 easy steps on how to attract local customers to your restaurant.
1. Create a Customer Loyalty Programme
When you attract local customers, you can expect them to return more often. Tourists come to a city to explore so having them come a second time is already a big task.
Make it more attractive for locals to come to your restaurant frequently with a customer loyalty programme. This loyalty programme can fit whatever budget you have.
Here are just a few examples:
2. Join a Local Business Community
To market your restaurant locally you not only need to know the customers, you also need to know the other businesses. Close ties with other businesses in the neighbourhood has several advantages.
Together you can solve collective problems with a collective solution. Friendly businesses will also let you promote your restaurant at their establishment and vice versa. You could also host events together.
You can also tie this in with the loyalty programme. For example, dining at your restaurant gives them 10% discount at a clothing shop nearby.
3. Promote & Update Your Menu
Attract local customers to come again and again by offering them something new each time. The more often you change your menu, the more reason they have to come back.
Many restaurants choose to update their menu every month for this very reason. It is also a way to get creative with produce that is in season and at its tastiest.
Market your restaurant locally by promoting your new menu each time. Send an email newsletter to your loyalty programme member, post it on your social media channels and highlight the new menu on your website.
4. Launch Targeted Google & Social Media Ads
Did you know that you can send personalized ads to a specific audience with Google Ads, Instagram Ads and Facebook Ads? An expert in utilising these tools can narrow down the target group to incredible detail.
Why is this important to know for how to market your locally? The Prospekt Digital team can push these ads to the locals in your town.
We can even bring it to as much detail as people that searched for your specific cuisine, people of a certain age group, people looking for a place with a certain atmosphere or theme and so on. Whatever defines your restaurant or the customers that you want, we know how to reach them online.
5. Market Your Restaurant Locally with Google My Business
A plan to market your restaurant locally starts with completing your restaurant Google My Business (GMB) page. Locals may pass by your restaurant every day without ever coming in unless they find you online, first.
Register your restaurant with Google so that you get full control over the information on your GMB page. This is the information that shows up under a Google Maps location.
One of the most common Google searches is ‘restaurant near me’ and you want to rank high on these search results. A complete GMB page boosts your ranking but it also makes your restaurant the more practical option for visitors.
6. Make Your Website Mobile-Friendly
Step 5 is not complete until you also make your website mobile-friendly. Most local searches are done on a mobile phone while people are out and about.
They are looking for quick information and a website that is not mobile-friendly only slows them down. In other words, they won’t make a reservation via a website that is difficult to navigate.
Test whether your website is easily viewed and scrolled through on both mobile phones and tablets. Could do with some improvements? Send us an email and we will help you out.
7. Push Quick Reservations
For the same reasons that you want a mobile-friendly website, you also want a quick and simple reservation system. Your online reservation system is the most important element of your restaurant website.
In every way that you market your restaurant locally, you have to place a link to your reservation system. Most people that are searching for a restaurant nearby want to make a reservation for the same night, sometimes even within 2 hours.
Again, to attract local customers you want to make things as easy as possible for them.
Another perk of direct online reservations is that it costs you less. Reservations through your personal web app is a reservation that you don’t have to pay a fee for to a third-party reservation system.
8. Use the Location Tag on Social Media
Another factor in your local search results ranking is how often your restaurant is mentioned. Using the location tag on Facebook and Instagram also counts.
So, whenever you upload a photo on Instagram or send out a post on Facebook, make sure you include a location tag. Social media users can click on the location which takes them to Google Maps for easy directions to your restaurant.
Locals may know their way around town but when you market your restaurant locally you want them to find you as easily as possible.
Once you have a plan ready for how to market your restaurant locally, we can help you fill in the technical details. The Prospekt Digital team is always ready to assist you with the digital marketing tasks that you just can’t get right.
Check our 8 steps for how to attract local customers and ask us any questions that you may have. Together we can execute an effective digital marketing plan that gets locals flocking through your doors.
Whether it’s a Restaurant or Bar. We can help take your restaurant marketing to the next level
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