Monday, May 20th, 2013
A mobile friendly website for restaurants that doesn’t have any of my pet peeves.
It was Friday afternoon and I generally don’t care much about small business website builders. The combination of these two led me to click the “delete” button. But then I quickly hit “undo”.
Wait? Did that say specialized websites for restaurants? Did it also mention mobile?
You see, one thing that annoys me to no end is restaurant websites. As a whole, they are horrible.
The key problem is that they aren’t design for mobile. Yet restaurant websites are the one category I primarily browse from a mobile device. You know the experience — you’re out somewhere, want to get something to eat, and start looking for something online. Or you know where you want to eat but would like to call ahead to get your name on the waitlist.
So you search for the restaurant’s website. It comes up.
Then you try to click the phone number on the site to call the restaurant and it doesn’t work. You tap your finger several times before you realize they made the phone number a graphic rather than text, so the phone doesn’t recognize that it’s a phone number. You then have to remember the number, switch to your dialer, and type it in.
Or you find an interesting restaurant in the area and want to see the menu. You click the menu link…and it’s a PDF.
Yes, a PDF. I’d bet 9 our of 10 restaurants have a pdf for their online menu. That’s very annoying when you’re on a mobile device.
OK, now back to the GoDaddy product. I figured I’d check it out and see if it “solved” the problem of restaurant web pages.
The example GoDaddy provided in its press release is Malee’s Thai Bistro in Scottsdale. I visited the site from my Droid, and the screenshot in this post is what I saw.
It was darn near perfect. A button to call. A button to pull up the map. A button to view the menu…and it’s not a PDF. (The menu’s are actually managed by a third party service that let’s restaurants update them easily.)
The site was mobile optimized. A quick scroll and you can see the hours.
The only thing missing was a link to OpenTable to make a reservation, although I don’t know if Malee’s uses OpenTable.
I’m not going to opine on the desktop version. But from a mobile standpoint, I love it.
I’m sure there are other good website builders for restaurants. In fact, if you search for Malee’s you’ll find a website that I assume is an older one they created with another company. It’s not bad, either.
Regardless of which builder a restaurant uses, I wish more would get on the bandwagon.