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Building a restaurant site

A beautiful site extends your restaurant's online identity and makes it easy for diners to find your menu, location and hours, and latest specials. In this guide, we'll cover how to select the right template for your restaurant and build the common features for a restaurant site including menus, reservations, hours, and location.

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Select a template

While all Squarespace templates feature built-in mobile design and can make an exciting, original restaurant site, the following templates lend themselves particularly well to food-focused designs. From large scrolling banners to Info Pages with full-bleed backgrounds, these templates show off your cuisine while keeping key details front and center.

Basil

Basil's bold banner images and unique parallax scrolling effect make it ideal for restaurants looking to promote mouth-watering imagery. A site-wide footer keeps information like hours and location accessible from every page.

For detailed instructions, visit Basil's guide

Pacific

Pacific's Index Page supports a single-page design that lets you put hours, location, menus, and imagery into one seamless, scrolling experience. Pacific also features a site-wide footer.

For detailed instructions, visit Pacific template family.

Aviator

Aviator combines a special feature, the Info Page, with full-bleed background images to create sites that catch the eye while conveying crucial information.

For detailed instructions, visit the Aviator template guide.

Tremont

Tremont's slideshow-style Index Page displays a series of full-bleed images, making it ideal for visually focused restaurant sites.

For detailed instructions, visit Using the Tremont template

Offer online ordering

Increase pick up and delivery orders by embedding an online ordering page in your site's navigation menu with our ChowNow integration. Visitors can view your menu, submit an order, and pay using a collapsable ChowNow ordering page. This helps visitors stay on your site and avoids the hassle of redirecting them to an external ordering system.

Display hours and location

Many visitors look to quickly confirm your restaurant's location or check if you're currently open. Placing hours and location on your homepage, or across your whole site using a footer, can help bring more diners through your doors. You can display hours and location in several ways:

Add your menus

Use the Menu Block to create clear, stylish menus that blend with your site’s design. Unlike .pdfs, all text in the Menu Block is indexable by search engines, which can help your SEO. Add a Layout Page, then click the Menu starter layout to begin with this design. 

If your restaurant has more than one menu, you can place multiple pages with Menu Blocks in a folder to create a drop-down menu. To learn more, visit Using folders.

Take reservations

Via phone or email

If you'd like diners to call or email, display an email address and phone number on the homepage or contact page. This can help your business feel friendly and accessible.

For help formatting email addresses and phone numbers as links, visit Create an email or phone link.

With OpenTable

If you're part of the OpenTable network, you can use the OpenTable Block to take bookings and reservation. You can add the OpenTable Block to your site's homepage, footer, or create a Reservations page.

Use imagery

Beautiful images help promote your restaurant's identity, space, and cuisine. Use the following features to create an enticing visual aesthetic:

  • Descriptive banners - Banners can combine text and imagery.
  • Galleries - Use Gallery Pages or Gallery Blocks to display images of your location and top menu items.
  • Image Blocks - If your template doesn't support banner or header images, you can separate page text using Image Blocks.

Promote social sharing

If your restaurant is active on Facebook, Twitter, Yelp, or other social media platforms, you can promote your profiles by displaying social icons. For detailed instructions, visit Adding social icons.

Optimize for search engines

Including your physical location on your site helps Google identify your location and promote your results in local searches. Although search engines use complex algorithms and results can't be guaranteed, signing up for Google MyBusiness, verifying your site with Google Search Console, and following these best practices can help your restaurant's search ranking.

Tips for selling food and perishables online

Selling food or beverages online is a great way to share your brand’s story and sell directly to customers without solely relying on local retailers. Here are a few tips:

  • If you sell products that customers buy regularly, like coffee, create subscription products to bring in predictable, recurring revenue. 
  • Display a stocklist to let shoppers know where they can buy your products in real life. Use the Locations page layout to get started. 
  • Create regional shipping zones to offer location-based shipping options. You can require customers to choose expedited shipping for perishables if they're far away, set higher shipping rates for customers outside the United States, or decline to ship to certain areas altogether.

Next steps

This is just the beginning of your restaurant's new site. Every restaurant is different, and you can use the following guides to customize your site for your unique vision:

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