Boost Your Restaurant Business Through Google Maps

56. EN-WeLoveWeb.eu-Boost Your Restaurant Business Through Google Maps

When you’re on a business trip or a fun foreign outing, no one wants to spend the whole day in the hotel room. But being new to the area makes it difficult to choose places to visit and grab a bite to eat. Sure, you can just go around asking for recommendations or looking for yourself.

Except for the fact that, deep down, you’d rather stay in. When looking for local eateries, you need something that best fits your preferences, or perhaps try something new. That can be difficult if you don’t have a means to compare your options before leaving to dine. For that reason, finding restaurants on Google Maps is how most people plan their evenings.

Google Maps – The Ideal Place to Look for Restaurants

Whether you’re craving something new or particular, or just in the mood for a casual dining experience in your vicinity, looking for cafés and restaurants is a great option.

There are a number of features that make the Maps app a popular option for hungry tourists.

Exploring Your Options

This feature is for users that are in the mood for just about anything, if it means they’ll receive a good meal. The “Explore” tab on Google Maps enables you to indiscriminately sort through all the restaurants in your whereabouts.

This way, you can choose your selection of dining spots based on reviews, theme, price range, or whatever suits your fancy. This feature is quick and designed to please a wide range of users.

Catering to Food Lovers

Another option allows Maps to help out those with acquired tastes to look for more interesting spots. The “Foodies List” feature uses data based on Google’s recommendations, public reviews, restaurant details, and feedback from reputable users.

This helps highlight niche or trending food joints that serve a fascinating platter of cuisines and food items to those with more refined or adventurous tastes.

User-Oriented Suggestions

Restaurant-goers that are actively seeking services on Maps through ratings, reviews, or viewed listings can receive personalized recommendations. The “For You” tab uses this information to retrieve and present users with nearby choices in any locality.

Additionally, the “Your Match” option analyses user preferences to offer suggestions based on previous histories of ratings and search histories.

Mobile-Friendly Service

The use of phones to search for, reserve tables at, or order from restaurants on Google Maps is ubiquitous at this point, especially around holiday spots. But while most of the internet isn’t optimized for mobiles, Google has taken steps to facilitate phone users.

On top of mobile friendly SEO, the Maps app itself is incredibly efficient and convenient on mobile devices. Some users even have perks that the Desktop version doesn’t offer. For instance, Android users can keep records of their previous visits to popular dining spots for future ease.

Additionally, in different areas, these users can receive recommendations and options based on specific needs. So, if you’re an Android user and you’re looking for a restaurant that is either low budget, offers vegan cuisine, pet-friendly, or offers outdoor dining, Maps will have you covered.

Why Restaurant Owners Must Join the Maps App

From a business point of view, restauranteurs that cater largely to tourists and holidaymakers must consider visibility. Aside from competition, appearing on search results and mapping services allows customers to diversify their options, which benefits businesses.

For online recognition, brands and businesses rely on off-page and on-page search engine optimization (SEO). But businesses that need foot traffic for revenue must also consider drawing patrons for nearby locations.

As we discussed above, featuring your restaurant on Google Maps gives a wide array of advantages to users. As more online viewers become customers, the more profitable a business becomes.

And with this advantage, new restaurant owners will be delighted to know that they too might take advantage of this type of exposure. But to get there, they need to get their food joint to appear on Maps before anything else. Let’s discuss how that can be achievable.

Get Your Business Profile Listed

Restaurants on Google Maps generally highlight all available businesses around a given area. But for yours to appear among the rest, Google needs to recognize it as a listed and verified enterprise.

Google Business Profile (formerly Google My Business) is a free, easy-to-use resource where business owners create and activate accounts, list the NAP (name, address, phone) details of their restaurant, and have it certified digitally as a local business.

Even businesses without official websites can open a profile and link their social media links to feature menus, ratings, and contact information in lieu of an advanced booking system. However, most verified food joints must still have their own sites, but that’s a discussion for another day.

Claim Your Business Listing

To make sure that your accurate business details are added to Google, you need to lay claim to your profile immediately. Once you’re ready to add your restaurant on Google Maps, go to Google Business Profile and

  1. Search for your restaurant by name.

If your business is already present, you need to claim it and update any old or inaccurate information. If not, with Step 1 underway, you must then

  1. Add the locality details about your business, like city, address, and zip code.
  2. Enter the type of restaurant you’re running.
  3. Add contact details and website URL.
  4. Confirm whether you’re interested in business notifications.
  5. Take steps to verify your business.

With all these steps taken care of, the next course of action is to make sure that your verified restaurant appears on Google Maps. To do that, you must

  1. Confirm manually that the business is visible via maps.
  2. Double-check ownership details.
  3. Add additions or changes as needed.

Promoting Restaurants on Google Maps

Once your business turns out as a verified online profile, it becomes available for customers to find via Maps. However, a simple listing merely makes you visible. But if you expect Maps to recommend your restaurant as a spot worth visiting, you need to optimize your online presence.

While details added in the Maps listing offers a few intriguing details like the type of cuisine you’re offering, how close you are, and your rating. But to qualify for personalized recommendations or other perks for Maps users, you need to make your profile more tantalizing with some robust additions.

Usually, Google Maps lists the three top-rated choices in a given location. While this list may vary depending on time, user preferences, or other factors, your aim is to qualify for this so-called “3-pack” on Maps.

To do that, you can consider the following tips.

Attract Customers Through Vibrant Images

Restaurants on Google Maps have the advantage of using the in-built gallery option to advertise their service through alluring, potentially high-quality images.

Business owners could use professional photos to promote their food, ambiance, and other facilities, like parking, kitchen equipment, catering for special events and other things customers can expect. Alternatively, you can encourage users to supplement positive reviews with pictures of their own for added credibility.

Good quality images tend to yield the best results, though amateur footage can also work as long as they give a natural idea of the place. However, avoid the urge to use stock photos or obviously doctored media as some businesses do. This tactic is not a welcoming sign and can discourage tourists from visiting.

Use Reviews Wisely

Positive ratings are a key driver of traffic for businesses. Restaurants featured on Google Maps tend to do better with positive reviews. So, if your place earns up to an average of four stars per visitor, you should absolutely use them to your advantage.

However, studies show that even restaurants that experience low ratings tend to do better if they advertise their customer’s responses digitally. This gives the impression that your business, while it has room for improvement, isn’t averse to feedback. Plus, customers often disagree with some bad reviews on a subjective basis, so that can work to your advantage.

Additionally, restaurant owners that handle unfavorable ratings by responding to patrons with offers of refunds, better future services, or even formal apologies can improve their standing among potential visitors.

As mentioned before, favorable reviews that come with photographic evidence of the experience are pretty much guaranteed to get you noticed.

Feature Signature Dishes

We stated earlier how customers can receive recommendations via Google based on past preferences, searches, or algorithm-based suggestions. If you’re serving dishes or cuisine that people are interested in, you can list them in your business profile.

Better yet, you can use your visibility and online presence to highlight dishes of the day, crowd favorites, or new menu items. With these constant updates and promotion of your business, it won’t be long before you are picked up as a business worth visiting among the top restaurants on Google Maps.

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Remain Active on Google

Speaking of updates, being active online is a sign of a lively business that others might deem worth their time. Your restaurant profile can benefit from a wide range of page activity to attract viewers. By updating photos and revamping menus in your galleries, you can rekindle interest in regular customers while garnering new ones.

Alternatively, you can promote discounts or coupons based on special occasions or holidays, or keep tourists or locals posted on upcoming events. If you have social media profiles, you can take time to interact with followers through new posts, videos, memes, and stories. These can then link to your Maps profile.

These updates are more than just a great way to remain engaged with customers. it also gets Google’s attention and aids in getting you closer to the top three of the top recommended restaurants on Google Maps.

Using Maps on Your Website

Most good restaurants bolster their web presence with well-crafted websites with state-of-the-art features and an emphasis on user experience. If you have a site already, you can integrate your Maps profile to it as well. All you need to do is

  • Open your restaurant on Google Maps.
  • Enable sharing and select “Embed a map”.
  • Add the resulting link to the web page of your choice.

There are a number of benefits of linking your Maps presence to your website. For one thing, it serves as a promising addition to pages that feature details about your business. You can even have a map added to the footer of your site.

But apart from aesthetic web design, there is a practical benefit to having your restaurant website or app feature a Maps feature. Specifically, remote orders for pick-up or delivery are usually bolstered by restaurants on Google Maps.

For instance, say you have confirmed and paid for an order online. If you or the deliverer is facing difficulties due to traffic, weather, or some other issue, you can utilize maps to seek alternative routes or even assess traffic conditions. This ends up being convenient for everyone involved.

E-Commerce Assistance for Businesses

Managing the online presence of your restaurant is a demanding but necessary task. However, business owners that must run a brick-and-mortar enterprise don’t always have the time, means, or skills to spearhead such responsibilities.

But as we’ve made clear, not doing so altogether is not a viable business strategy, especially if the local competition is strong. To fix this, most large and small business owners can avail the option of outsourcing their digital needs, like optimizing their restaurants on Google Maps.

Services like WeLoveWeb can assist businesses in the food industry ramp up their e-commerce capabilities through the skills of their hired experts in exchange for affordable prices. So, if you’re struggling to get your food joint visible through Google Business Profile or Maps, you can always let someone else do the work for you.

In Closing

One of the most effective competitive marketing techniques for emerging restaurant businesses involves improving customer experience through all means necessary. Apart from gaining popularity, Google itself sees you in a more positive light.

On that note, the reason why restaurants on Google Maps has to do with how much it benefits the public. This is especially true of newcomers in a given area looking to try something fun or interesting.

For that reason, striving to qualify for a Maps listing is a must for restaurant owners. Only then can you expect to feature your restaurant on Google Maps.

Once that is over with and all the details are comprehensively updated the next step is marketing. Here, a little creative branding your business is all that is necessary to make your business stand up in a crowd of local contenders.

Carmen Marín
Editor

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