Undeniably, social media plays a very important role in marketing and promoting your business. you can reach out to large audiences via social shares, promote brand awareness, and build a following.
This being said social media alone is not enough! besides the perks mentioned above, there are many downsides to only having a Facebook page to represent your bar or restaurant, and it could be costing your company money.
Website vs Facebook page
As an example, we will refer to bars and restaurants located in tourist resorts during this post.
Search Engine Optimisation
Known as SEO, Search Engine Optimisation is when a web page is optimised to be found based on keywords entered into search engines; such as Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc. This is incredibly important for businesses as the majority of people use Google when searching for businesses that they do not yet know.
A tourist arrives on holiday in a town they have never been to, and they want to go out for a roast dinner. There are 4 common options to choose from.
- Walk the streets until they find what they are looking for.
- Join a Facebook Group and wait to be accepted to be able to ask a question
- Search Facebook for the answers
- Search on Google.
As a test I typed into Facebook and Google “roast dinner in Tenerife”, and the results are below.
Facebook displayed a list of groups you might be interested in joining, then, and although it does look delicious, it next displayed a sponsored advert about pizza which is not what they are looking for. Then the same search on Google takes you to a full page promoting restaurants that provide delicious roast dinners, with images, description text (Meta description), and a link to their website.
Because these companies have written a post about Roast Dinners in Tenerife on their website, they are likely to be the businesses that will get the custom and this advert is completely free of charge, FOREVER!
Automated live chat bots
Facebooks Messenger for businesses has improved in recent years, you can set an automated reply by giving text, or multiple-choice questions. But it´s nothing to rave about.
Using a FREE automated chatbot such as Tidio, you can set bots to perform in as many languages as you need based on the language selected in the visitor’s device settings, make reservations, and capture email addresses to enter them into a sales funnel!
With a website, you can track users using cookies, and push images, links, and offers to customers’ phones. Let’s say that your bar is quiet and you have had no customers for the past hour. You can send an advert straight to people’s phones, promoting happy hour. Or, if you have an act on, send a Push Notification to customers telling them to come down!
The best way to promote brand awareness is by using social media. This is probably the one advantage. Facebook is fantastic for getting your word across.
Online sales are normally achieved using a combination of Facebook and the E-commerce section of your website. Use Facebook to promote your offers, and use your website to handle your commerce and payment gateway.
You may think online sales are pointless for bars and restaurants, but what if you want to take a deposit to reserve a large table, Christmas dinners, or entry fee events such as New Year’s? If you charge for something, don´t force them to come to you to make the payment.
You could also allow your customers to invite friends to buy them drinks! This is a great gimmick, ideal for birthdays, hen, and stag parties. It allows friends who could not make an event to get involved.
In this post, we have used bars and restaurants as an example but you can apply this to most businesses. And building a website is not expensive. This type of website can be built using a free theme and plugins. You would be looking at about £300 – £500 in labour as a one-off fee, and a small annual fee for hosting and your registered domain name.
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