Some deeply unsettling facts wandered into my frame of vision this week, and if you’re running a small business, it’s going to be just what you want–and even need–to know. As it turns out, 60 percent of all restaurants do not have menus posted online. And fully 95 percent do not have a mobile web site.
While, admittedly, a mobile website isn’t necessary for every small business–many can indeed get by with their standard equivalent–but when you consider that many restaurant web pages aren’t built for the mobile web, that becomes a problem. For instance, many restaurants like to lace their web presentations with Flash animations and music to attempt to set a mood. And while for regular desktops and laptops, this isn’t so much a problem, trying to access these services on a mobile browser that doesn’t usually come equipped wtih Flash, trouble can arise for users. And users who find a web site too much trouble to access often won’t, meaning a lost potential customer.
But the primary opportunity being missed, based on studies by Restaurant Science, is that when most people are looking for a restaurant website on their mobile devices, they’re looking for one thing: a menu. This is the primary point that a restaurant can use to advertise itself. People are already out. People are already interested in a meal while not at home, or possibly to take back home with them. They are right where you–as a small business–want them.
Basically, if you’re doing business as a brick-and-mortar operation, where people need to be out of the house in order to gain access to your goods and / or services, a mobile web presence is simply a smart idea. If you’re serving food, post your menu. If you’re selling items, let people know what your specials are. It’s the kind of thing that can help get you some business, and with the way the economy is, business will keep yours afloat.
Naturally, it’s not just good marketing that keeps a business afloat, but also a top notch customer service experience. Bringing in some cloud-based telephony tools like hunt groups and find-me, follow-me service can keep callers happy by reducing their wait times and helping them find just the right person to help them.
Keeping a mobile web presence is very important for most any small business these days, some more so than others, but it’s the whole experience that will make or break a business, so consider bringing the mobile web into your promotional efforts.