Your website is your always on, 24/7 marketing tool.
Yet oftentimes, companies just “set it and forget it.” Or, they add pages and content based on different one-off requests, only to end up with an overwhelming site that lacks cohesion and usability.
“With record online competition, shorter attention spans and changing consumer expectations, providing clarity, convenience and an optimal user experience are key to winning and retaining customers,” says The Food Group’s Digital Marketing Director, Megan Keleshian. “A visitor’s journey doesn’t only start or stop on the website either – and therefore content and information created or updated here should also be thought about holistically across all channels and communication touchpoints.”
Whether your foodservice website is bare bones or bloated, you can start with these three insights to refresh your website content.
Tip #1: Optimize Your Product Information
Operators are looking to manufacturer’s websites for information. According to our latest Touchpoints Survey, new product information (57%) and product specific information (53%) are the top two types of information operators find most useful when visiting manufacturer websites.
So, feature new and existing product information, culinary trends, nutritional information, and recipes, and they will come.
It’s a great time to spring clean your website and review your content to see if you’re displaying your product information in a user-friendly way. Ask these questions to assess your website’s product content:
- Is it easy for operators to find product information from your home page?
- Can users filter for the products they are looking for?
- Do you offer product catalogs based on different segments and needs? If so, are they relevant and readily available?
- Do your product pages provide specific information, such as supply chain updates and nutritional information?
- Are your product pages optimized for the right keywords so they show up in search engine results pages?
- Note: 38% of foodservice operators (42% of commercial) use search engines as one of their top five sources of receiving information for their business.
Tip #2: Consider Your Target Audience
Are you trying to reach restaurant operators, or is your ideal customer a decision maker in a healthcare facility? The foodservice industry spans such a variety of segments that there can be significant differences in your user’s pain points. Your website needs to provide specific insights and solutions that are relevant to your target audience. Our research reveals the following high-level preferences that you can keep in mind as you develop content for your website.
- Non-commercial operators want more product information. They find nutritional information, recipes and supply chain updates more useful when visiting manufacturer websites than commercial operators.
- Commercial operators want trend information. They find culinary trends, consumer trends and market trends more useful when visiting manufacturer websites than non-commercial operators.
Finally, regardless of industry, if you are targeting larger organizations (i.e., those with sales of $1 million or more per location), you should consider posting culinary trend content on your website.
Tip #3: Share Best Practices
As consumer expectations for sustainability in the food and beverage industry grow, operators are now looking to manufacturers for leadership in sustainability and other best practices. Ninety-five percent of operators indicated that it is at least somewhat important to them to understand a manufacturers’ commitment to best practices, with 66% finding it extremely/very important. Commitment to best practices includes food processing, environmental considerations and sustainability. In fact, 43% of operators thought that sustainable food products and information will be more important to customers in the next few years.
What does this look like in practice? Providing information on your website, sales materials and social media on the best practices that are important to your brand. For example, if you have decided to make an effort to become a more sustainable business, share your goals, how you plan on reaching them and how you plan on measuring progress toward them.
These three tips are just the beginning of how you can optimize your foodservice website to be an always-on sales tool for your business. Reach out to get expert guidance on how to maximize your website presence.