Being able to sell items online opens up a lot of possibilities for businesses, but a great online presence can make a difference even if customers can’t buy from a particular business on the web. That’s because the vast majority of shoppers–81% according to Advertising Week–research items online at least some of the time before making a purchase in a brick-and-mortar location.
What does this mean for small retailers? Even if your location isn’t yet e-commerce enabled, it still pays to provide an attractive, credible and easily searchable catalog of your offerings. Doing this can make you competitive and attractive to those consumers who like to research and browse before they buy.
It’s an important capability for any small business, and restaurants are no exception. This highly competitive sector is sometimes about satisfying very specific cravings—and other times about helping the undecided zero in on what they want.
Clover Online, which is evolving to provide a full suite of solutions to help small businesses manage the many dimensions of their online presence, has rolled out a new set of themes tailored specifically for restaurants. Here are four capabilities of Clover’s new restaurant websites that promise to provide a boost to food and drink merchants.
1. Automatically import inventory information
For Clover merchants, this is a convenient feature that ensures what appears to the customer is in harmony with what the restaurant has on hand. Automatic import makes it easy for restaurants to load their menu items quickly. And now that Clover Online is preinstalled for Clover merchants, this process is easier than ever.
2. Website designs specially made for your business
It isn’t just enough to be online. As a small business, you want to project credibility and professionalism with your online identity, just as you do with your brick-and-mortar location. Clover Online has designed themes that are specially made for restaurants, cafés, ice cream shops and even food trucks. The average consumer may not be able to name the latest trends in website design, layout and typography, but they know what feels modern when they see it. Having access to themes that represent the latest website design and user experience trends will make your site feel relevant, and that can help it resonate better.
3. Built with your customers in mind
Getting visitors to your website is one thing. But organizing it in such a way that visitors can find what they’re looking for in just few clicks is critical for converting visitors into customers. With your restaurant website, be sure to organize your menu items by categories that make sense; to highlight specialties and new menu items you want to move; and to make your site searchable so that visitors who know precisely what they want can find it easily. Clover Online offers categorization and search for your website as soon as you set it up.
4. Automatically works on mobile
According to Smart Insights, four out of five of U.S. internet users own a smartphone. What’s more, search engines like Google are making websites’ “responsiveness,” the quality that enables site content to render in a mobile-friendly layout, a key criterion in search ranking. That means having a mobile site is key both to getting found online, and to encouraging users to stick with your mobile site once they reach it. Clover Online stores are automatically mobile responsive, so restaurant merchants can rest assured that visitors are having a great website experience no matter how they’re accessing the restaurant’s online menu.
Restaurants require purpose-built website experiences. Clover Online’s new restaurant website templates make it simple for any restaurant merchant—neighborhood restaurant, coffee shop, food truck or other concept—to have a beautiful website that helps drive commerce to their location.
Amir Irani is Director of Product Management at First Data. He manages user experience, product and strategy for Clover Online
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