SEO is the first thing you might think of when optimizing your restaurant’s website. You’re not wrong. It is still one of the most important tools in increasing any website’s search rankings.
While SEO remains to be one of the best restaurant digital marketing strategies you can utilize, Google has made several changes in their search engine algorithms. This means it is no longer about stuffing keywords into your website content. There are several SEO activities you can do and they fall under two distinct branches: on-page and off-page.
In this article, we’ll share the ultimate SEO checklist for restaurants to help you rank in Google and get more customers!
First on the list is having SEO keywords. After all, it’s still the cornerstone of SEO. Unlike before where all you need is to repeat one keyword in your content, Google now prefers that you optimize long-tail keywords that are relevant to your business and the users’ search patterns.
a. Broad Restaurant Keywords
A good broad restaurant keyword sample would be “Restaurant in Florida.” You can also be more specific as to where in Florida your restaurant is geographically located. For example, “Restaurantin Orlando.” With this keyword, you will face less competition than the first one.
b. Restaurant Niche Keywords
A niche-specific keyword would include the kind of cuisine you’re serving to narrow down your target and again, face less competition. You can look at sites like Yelp, OpenTable, or Foursquare to determine which niche-specific keywords are used in your area. Some examples are “Japanese Restaurant in Orlando” or “Asian Restaurant in Orlando.”
c. Brand-Related Keywords
Your brand-related keyword would simply be your name or your name plus your branch location. (Examples: Cheesecake Factory or Cheesecake Factory Florida)
If you’re using these keywords on your website, here’s how you can match them with your website pages:
|Web Page||Primary/Related Keywords|
|Home page||Japanese Restaurant in Florida / Japanese Restaurant in Orlando / Japanese Restaurant Near Me|
|Menu page||Japanese Menu / Japanese Menu Specials|
|Specials page||Japanese Food Specials / Japanese Food Deals|
|Order page||Japanese Food Delivery / Order Japanese Food Online|
|Reservations page||Japanese restaurant reservations (near me) / dinner reservations|
|Catering Page||Japanese food catering / Japanese catering deals / Japanese catering near me|
|Banquet page||Banquet Halls near me|
|Rewards page||Japanese food rewards|
|About US page||Japanese Restaurant (near me) / (name of restaurant)|
|Contact Page||Contact us / (name of restaurant) + contact number|
ON-Page SEO Checklist
a. Title Tag
The main heading you see in the search results is the title tag. You can optimize your web page title by using the primary keyword you have identified. If you want to be the first on Google page ranking when someone searches for a Japanese restaurant in Florida, you can use this title tag: Florida, Japanese Restaurant|(Name of the restaurant). Be sure to make a unique title tag for each web page.
b. Meta Description
After optimizing your title tag, you need to optimize another piece of metadata found just below the title tag when people search through Google – your meta description. This short description (under 300 characters) should describe the content of your page. Relevant keywords should be included here so it’s easier for search engine crawlers to pick up.
c. Alt Text to your Images
Your image should be optimized too. Make sure that your main image has an ALT tag that contains your primary keyword. The Alternative text will help search engines describe the content of your image. That way, if a customer searches for your keyword and sees your image first, they will be more likely to check your site. Don’t forget to put your website link on your image as well.
d. URL Structure
Your URL is also very important to allow your search engines to crawl from page-to-page of your website. Keep each of your URL short but it should contain keywords that reflect the pages they direct to. Each word should be separated with a hyphen (-). Warning: Do this for your future URLs. We don’t recommend changing the existing ones as it may harm your search ranking.
e. SSL/ Https
Google prefers sites that have Secure Sockets Layer (SSL). So, it’s important that your site is SSL-enabled to improve your security, trustworthiness, and visibility.
f. Internal Links
Another important factor of on-page SEO is internal linking. For each page on your site, find opportunities to link a part of your content to another page of your website. Of course, choose words that are relevant and contain the keyword of the destination page.
g. Page Performance
The one thing that’s left to do is check your page performance. The previous points in our on-page SEO checklist for restaurants focused on the content. However, it’s equally important to note that your website loading speed and mobile-responsiveness will affect your search rankings. You can check this with Google’s page speed tool or have web experts review it for you.
OFF-Page SEO Checklist
Undoubtedly the biggest factor of your off-page SEO is the number and quality of your backlinks. The more sites linking to your content, the more domain authority you get from Google ranking. Some of the ways to build backlinks are creating more engaging content that people can easily share and mention to others, reaching out to influencers or bloggers, or writing guest posts from other websites.
b. Social Promotion
In this age where social media is very powerful, you have to optimize your social media profiles to engage with your customers and create a funnel to your website. Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are three of the most important social media networks where you can promote your content and generate link shares.
With this ultimate SEO checklist for restaurants, we hope you get an idea and guide to start this powerful restaurant digital marketing strategy. Remember that both on-page and off-page SEO work together to improve your website’s search engine ranking, both of which take time to deliver results.
If you want to get started quickly with professional help on your website’s SEO, schedule your free strategy session now with Tulumi Digital Marketing.