Local Restaurant Marketing: How to Ace Restaurant SEO and Local Promotion

local restaurant marketing

When it comes to your restaurant's online visibility, SEO is always the answer. If you efficiently optimize your website, both on-page, and off-page, you increase your chances of ranking on the first page of Google for searches related to your restaurant’s niche.

Your goal with restaurant marketing shouldn't be to rank for general queries or gain global visibility, as this will not translate to new clients. Rather, you need to up your local online marketing game and rank for local searches to encourage people near your location to become your clients.

In this article, you will learn the basics of local SEO and find some useful ideas for local restaurant marketing that will increase your visibility and help you gain new clients.

What is local restaurant marketing and how can it help your business

Did you know that 46% of all Google searches look for local information? Local searches can be anything from "pasta carbonara near me", to "pizza Margherita in Boston." Local SEO is a part of SEO specifically used to help a local business gain visibility in local search engine results.

Have you noticed that when you search for something like "best pizza" the first results are not from another country but from pizza places around you? Google already knows your location, and the results prove local SEO work done by the best-ranking restaurants.

Benefits of local SEO for restaurants

Local SEO is vital for any restaurant’s success. You need local restaurant marketing to get exposure and constantly reach new potential customers to help your business grow and make a sustainable profit. Here are the key benefits of restaurant local SEO:

  • Get more organic traffic: while paying for traffic will get you faster results, you will have to pay every time someone clicks on your Google Ad, and you may not have the budget for this yet, especially if you are just starting; Local SEO results can be seen in time, as you will constantly get traffic when people search for the keywords you used;
  • Increase brand awareness: results that appear on the first page of Google are generally seen as trustworthy. If you optimize your SEO locally, you not only gain visibility but also trust;
  • Improve conversion rates: most local searches are done with the intent of purchasing. You usually search for pizza near you because you are hungry, not because you want to do some research. Therefore, if you have an optimized website and menu, you can convince anyone who clicks on your page to order;
  • Stand out from the competition: good local restaurant SEO will help you rank above the competition for similar keywords. Consequently, customers will order from you, especially if you have an online ordering system they can use easily.
  • Build a community around your restaurant: if you put in the effort to master local restaurant marketing, you will gain not only new clients, but also loyal customers who will promote your business.

Read more: Key Benefits of SEO for Restaurant Websites

6 local restaurant marketing ideas to gain clients

Local restaurant marketing may seem scary and complicated initially, but it will be easy to tackle if you break it down into easy-to-follow steps. Check out these local restaurant SEO marketing tips that will help you attract more customers to your business.

Read more: 15 Data-Backed Restaurant SEO Tips for 2024 [Infographic]

1. Optimize your website

To rank high in local searches, your website must have no fault. The off-page SEO optimization will help, but you must ensure you are promoting a highly SEO-optimized website to begin with. Here is what you must look out for:

Add your location in key sections of your website

To let Google know where your location is and what type of food you serve, you need to add this information on your homepage and other relevant landing pages, such as contact information or About Us.

Here are some places where you should add your location on your website if you want to aces restaurant local marketing:

  • Title tag: the title is the page's name shown in Google results. Add the relevant information described above, such as "Pizza Restaurant Berlin;"
  • Meta description: this small amount of text appears under the title in searches. Add your location, type of food, and other relevant keywords, all integrated into an inviting phrase;
  • Content: naturally include your location in the text on your homepage and other pages, especially in H1 or H2;
  • Alt tags: are used to describe an image, and you can also add your location in the description.
local restaurant marketing ideas

Use Schema Markup

Schema Markup is a tool that allows you to add microdata to a page to create a reach snippet that search engines can interpret easier. Use schema.org to get the restaurant data you need (in the Food Establishments category) and paste it into key points of your code.

Read more: How to Correctly Implement the Restaurant Schema Markup

Add Geotags to your photos

Let Google know that all pictures on your website were taken in your location by adding geotags to your images. You can add them to a platform like Flickr, fill in the information, and then post them on your website.

local marketing ideas for restaurants

Focus on user experience

For a user to have a great experience on your website, it should be easy to navigate and have fast loading times for pages, elements, and images with no bugs. Coincidentally, these are all factors Google uses to rank your website.

Do you want to skip this step and still reap the benefits of local restaurant marketing? With a sales-optimized website from GloriaFood, you can! After filling in your information and adding a menu, you can get a restaurant website, already SEO-optimized in a few seconds.

You will get access to the easiest restaurant website builder that requires no technical skills, and you will be guided visually through the steps of setting up your own website.

The one-page template is easy to navigate (pleasing the search engine), and you can add texts full of relevant keywords for your restaurant niche and beautiful images that encourage people to order.

Give clients a seamless website experience Get your own restaurant website with built-in online ordering Start now

To get an optimized website that looks similar to this preview, sign up on GloriaFood, complete the setup steps and go to admin -> Setup -> Publishing -> Sales optimized website. You are now ready to gain more visibility and customers!

how to do marketing local restaurant

Read more: How to Optimize Your Restaurant Website to Increase Traffic & Sell More Food

2. Content is king

Your website's content allows you to convince people to become your clients. You must include relevant keywords that will help you rank higher on Google. While adding as many keywords as possible is important, so is writing a text meant for people: easy to follow and understand, that flows naturally.

Don't force keywords; only use them if you can natively integrate them. Here are a few places where you can add relevant keywords to up your local restaurant marketing:

  • On your homepage: don't shy away from long-tail keywords or keywords that don't have a big number of searches. They will still bring you visitors;
  • The FAQ page: adding a page with questions and answers allows you to integrate weirdly formulated keywords that wouldn’t fit in otherwise;
  • On your blog: if you have the time and passion, invest in creating a restaurant blog with useful articles for your client, complete with relevant keywords;
  • In guest posts: convince local bloggers or businesses to let you write a post with valuable information on their blog and link back to your website.

Read more: 10 tips on how to create the best restaurant website content

3. Be present in restaurant directories

Local restaurant marketing is as much about on-page SEO as it is about off-page SEO. You need backlinks and citations to let Google know your information is correct and relevant. Therefore, you must have your NAP information (name, address, phone number) in as many local places with authority as possible.

Let Google know your information is legitimate by adding your NAP information in these places:

  • Local restaurant directories: it should be easy to add your info by sending a solicitation;
  • Industry directories: add your info on an industry-specific website related to your food niche;
  • Review platforms: claim your business on every review platform in your area;
  • Local news websites: you can invite them to review your restaurant;
  • Social media: include relevant information on all your social media platforms.

4. Do local link building

Link Building is a local restaurant marketing tactic that implies getting sites with authority to link back to your website. There are simple ways to do this, such as linking to it through your social media (try using relevant platforms for your audience and experiment with popular ones such as YouTube and TikTok).

Some ways require more time and effort but will bring you results:

  • Local blogs: find food influencers in your area and invite them to collaborate with you. You can offer an experience at your restaurant for a mention on the blog or offer to create a recipe in partnership with them so you can get the desired link;
  • Local newspapers: you can get a newspaper to mention you by inviting them to events or, if they have a separate restaurant review section, ask them to try out your restaurant.

Read more: The Secret Ingredients of Link Building for Restaurant Websites

5. Optimize Google My Business

If you haven’t already claimed your Google Business Profile page, do it now! It is imperative for local restaurant marketing! The more information you offer, the better, so make sure to complete all the setup steps. This info shouldn’t be left out:

  • Updated working hours: with special updates for days off or vacations so people don’t feel disappointed when they can’t reach you;
  • Exact location: you can also include pictures with directions to help people easily reach your restaurant;
  • Pictures of everything: of course, you should have pictures of your delicious menu, but don't forget your logo, your interior, the team, the outside of your location, and candid photos of the restaurant's atmosphere;
  • Link to the menu: let people know what type of food you serve by giving them a direct link to your website, where your menu can be accessed with the tap of a button;
  • Google posts: often an overlooked feature, it works like a microblog, where you can post new menu launches, achievements, or any other news you want to share.

Read more: How to Optimize Google My Business for Your Restaurant: Must-Know Tips

6. Encourage reviews

Reviews are essential not only for local restaurant marketing but also for potential clients. For that reason, if you want to let Google know you have a genuine business, you must encourage your clients to review your restaurant.

Here is what you cand do to encourage reviews:

  • Add a review section to your website: dedicate a section of your website to encouraging happy customers to leave you a review so you can continue to deliver the excellent service they enjoyed;
  • Promote reviews on social media: include constant posts in your social media strategy that promote reviews. Include a link where customers can leave a review, so they don't have to search for it. You can also give out prizes to people who leave you a review;
  • Train your employees to ask for reviews: ask your staff to tactfully encourage clients to leave a positive review if they enjoyed the experience;
  • Use email marketing: you can send a dedicated email asking clients to review your business.

But getting reviews is not the end, you must also respond to every one of them. 86% of customers are fairly likely to use a business that responds to all their client reviews, so don’t miss out on the chance to get more customers.

Read more: 10 Restaurant Review Sites You Need to Be on Right Now

Local offline marketing ideas for restaurants

Local marketing online is more than just local SEO that is targeted at search engines. Restaurant local marketing is about connecting with the people around you, building a community, and helping the locals, while also promoting the amazing food you serve at your restaurant.

Here are some examples of local restaurant marketing you can try:

Sponsor local events

You know how at football matches you see a lot of brand names on the side or on the teams’ shirts? By sponsoring the event, the brands show they have a passion for football and want to support the players, but also market their business to fans through posters.

The conclusion is that you should choose the event you sponsor wisely as your name will be associated with it for a long while. To do efficient online marketing for a local business, do some diligent research, ensure the organizers share your values, and there are no illegal occurrences that will affect you later.

The amount you give for sponsorship can vary. Set up a distinct amount of your marketing budget for events at the start of the year and stick with it. Don't go overboard if you don't make much profit. Marketing is great, but not at the expense of your survival.

Do local networking

One of the best ways to do local restaurant marketing is to connect with your peers, complementary businesses, or just other communities around you. The great thing about it is you don't even have to leave your house.

Get on Facebook and Reddit and find groups or subreddits dedicated to your town, whether industry-related or hobby-related. Don't just post advertisements for your restaurant. Try to engage with the locals and determine what they like and need so you can develop better promotions that would interest them.

Increase your online visibility and get more clients Get a sales-optimized restaurant website in no time Start now


Local restaurant marketing has multiple benefits for your business that will help you succeed. To achieve greater visibility and attract more clients, follow the steps provided above, starting with a perfectly SEO-optimized website.

Focus your efforts on building credibility for the search engines but don’t forget about the clients. They are the ones that will ultimately help your restaurant grow.

Otilia Dobos

Otilia Dobos is sometimes a content writer, other times a copywriter, but always produces high-quality content that helps clients up their marketing game. She devotes her attention to helping restaurant owners have a successful business with well-documented and SEO-optimized articles.

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