Small budget Restaurant Advertising Ideas That Deliver Results

restaurant advertising ideas

Opening a restaurant implies spending a lot of money, from ingredients and location to staff compensation, and maintenance. Chances are you’ll invest most of your budget on these and leave the marketing strategy last.

The problem is that you can serve the best food in the world, but if nobody finds out about it, you won’t be able to run a successful restaurant. This is why marketing should also be a priority. You can’t turn the clock back now, so what is the solution?

Easy, check out these small-budget restaurant advertising ideas that will help you get your business noticed:

Best restaurant advertising ideas for a low budget:

No matter your budget, these restaurant advertising ideas will help you increase your business's visibility, attract more customers, and get more sales:

Restaurant advertising idea 1: Get your Google Business Profile

What do you do when you need to find out something, be it the ingredients for a recipe, where to buy hot sauce or what is the best restaurant in your area? Search on Google, of course. And you are just one of many who use Google as a primary solution seeker.

Therefore, the main place you must promote your restaurant is on Google. The good news is that Google gives you a free tool to market your business on the most-used search engine: the Google Business Profile.

All you have to do is set it up and complete all the required information, so you can appear in search results related to your type of cuisine. Here is what you must include:

  • Update working hours, even for holidays
  • The exact address, with tips on how to reach it
  • Many mouth-watering pictures of your food
  • Photos of your restaurant’s interior and atmosphere
  • FAQ section so people can interact with your business
  • Review section so customers can recommend your restaurant
  • Link to your menu/website so people can order and find out more about you

Restaurant advertising idea 2: Encourage positive restaurant reviews

Before the internet, you would hope your restaurant would get promoted through word-of-mouth, from one friend to another. Now, it is way easier, people turn to online reviews to see if other people liked the restaurant they want to visit.

Consequently, if you want more clients, you must get as many positive reviews as possible. If you invest no money in this advertisement method, the reward is huge. Check out these tips for persuading people to review your business:

  • Offer excellent customer service and food that will encourage people to review your restaurant
  • Have servers suggest to clients at the end of the meal that they can leave an online review
  • Add a link to your review platforms on your website and social media channels

Read more: The 10 Best Restaurant Review Sites You Must Get On in 2024

Restaurant advertising idea 3: Add small, yet irresistible restaurant promotions to your menu

One of the best small-budget restaurant advertising ideas is adding promotions to your menu. They don’t have to be huge, like 50% of the whole menu, they must be enticing enough that clients won’t be able to resist them.

For example, offering free delivery, and a free dessert for orders over a certain amount or 5% of all pizzas will allow you to still make a profit while attracting more clients.

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You can easily add a variety of restaurant promotions to your menu in just a few seconds with our free online ordering system. Check out this video for instructions:

Read more: 10 Restaurant Website Promotion Ideas for Delivery & Takeout You Need Right Now

Restaurant advertising idea 4: Take advantage of an online ordering system with marketing features

When you are working with a small budget, every penny counts. Why not start marketing your business by using our free online ordering system which allows clients to order directly on your website, with just a few clicks?

Easy-of-use is the best advertisement. Online ordering is a must for any restaurant, and, if you make it convenient for your clients to order, you will surely persuade them to choose your place over your competitors.

Promote your business online on a small budget Use this online ordering system to reach more clients Start Now

The online ordering system from GloriaFood also has some free and paid features that are worth it because they will help you promote your restaurant:

  • The Autopilot feature: helps you send email campaigns targeted according to purchase history, so you can convince people to order again;
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  • The Kickstarter feature: attract more people to order online by sending them an attractive promotion;
    how do restaurants advertise
  • The flyers module: market your restaurant offline with professionally made flyers.
    restaurant advertisement examples

Restaurant advertising idea 5: Implement low-budget restaurant event ideas

Events are a great way to build hype around your restaurant and fill your tables. Here are a few ideas that won’t break the bank:

  • Wine tasting: collaborate with local wineries to offer a unique experience for your clients;
  • Disco night: choose a night a week when you bring in a DJ to turn the restaurant into a club for a few weeks;
  • Local fair: offer your space for local artisans to sell their products over the weekends;
  • Private events: allow people to rent out your restaurant for private events.

Read more: 10 Promotional Events for Restaurants to Get Your Business on the Map

Restaurant advertising idea 6: Get a sales-optimized website

Your Google Business Profile can only get you so far without a link to your website. If you want to rank on the first page of Google, you need a sales and SEO-optimized restaurant website to convince clients to order from and visit your restaurant.

You can get it from us for less than the price of a big pizza. Check out this video to learn how to use our online ordering system to get a restaurant website that will impress your customers:

After you set it up easily, with no technical knowledge, you will enjoy:

  • SEO and sales-centered content, to help you get more customers
  • Visible menu button to convince any visitor to become a client
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  • Clean design that leads people to important information and increases conversion
Advertise your business with an SEO and sales optimized restaurant website Generate yours in less than 10 minutes Start Now

Restaurant advertising idea 7: Use high quality food photography

One of the best restaurant advertising ideas is to show your food in the best light. Take some money apart to hire a professional photographer or make the effort to learn more about food photography because it will make a huge difference.

A picture can be the difference between a client who immediately closes the menu and one who goes through the whole checkout process. Stay away from bad-quality pictures that are blurry, cluttered, and taken in a bad light.

Make your menu items the start of the photos because that’s what clients are interested in when they search for a restaurant: how the food looks.

Restaurant advertising idea 8: Use videos to broaden your visibility

It goes without saying that one of the essential small-budget restaurant advertising ideas is to promote your business on social media. But, don’t just stick to the basic posts, you can reach more people if you use videos.

Video content is the preferred marketing technique on social media right now. Leveraging an efficient and user-friendly video editing platform can significantly enhance your ability to create engaging and visually appealing videos for your audience.

However, if you're short on time or resources, there are plenty of online video ad makers available that offer easy-to-use templates and tools to help you create professional-looking videos without needing extensive editing experience.

  • Making of for one your best-selling dishes;
  • Your chef teaching your followers an easy and fast recipe;
  • Day in the life of a restaurant owner, kitchen worker, or server.

Read more: 25 Eye-Catching Social Media Post Ideas for Restaurants

Restaurant advertising idea 9: Collaborate with local complementary businesses

A free way to market a business is to befriend complementary businesses in your area and collaborate to promote each other. For example, place a flyer in the hotel lobby near you so tourists can easily find your restaurant. In return, promote the hotel on your social media.

This type of marketing can work with any type of business that is not your direct competitor, so start searching for wineries, local producers, and breweries to broaden your audience.

Restaurant advertising idea 10: Promote user-generated content

Keeping on the social media subject, a great way to show clients that you care about their involvement and that you want more is to promote the content they post that mentions your restaurant.

It is called user-generated content and it can be in the form of stories, videos, or direct posts. Make it a point to share all the positive posts on your stories at least once a week. It is free marketing that convinces followers your place is worth it because others had a great experience.

Restaurant advertising idea 11: Participate in social media food trends

If you want restaurant advertising ideas that don’t cost money, it is time to monitor social media food trends. What is popular right now, is it hot chocolate, an easy recipe, or a new way to make a certain dish?

If it fits your restaurant branding, you must also participate so you can increase your visibility.

Read more:

Restaurant advertising idea 12: Organize contests with food prizes

Sometimes, you need to invest money to make money. This is especially true for contests. The great news is that you can only offer an all-inclusive meal for four people, yet, in return, you get a lot of visibility.

Here are some easy-to-implement restaurant competitions:

  • Like and share our post for a chance to win an all-paid meal for two;
  • Comment your favorite menu item for a chance to win an all-paid meal for four;
  • Post a story tagging our restaurant for a chance to win an all-paid meal for four.

Final words

You can successfully market your business no matter what budget you have. Try out the above restaurant advertising ideas, starting with an efficient online ordering system and sales-optimized website and you will notice an immediate rise in sales.

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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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