7 Game-Changing Digital Marketing Strategies for Restaurant Businesses in Dubai

Written by Sharoon Emmanuel

Managing a restaurant business in UAE is certainly no easy undertaking. In order to stand a chance in this fiercely competitive industry, digital marketing is the way forward. With around 75% smartphone users gaining access to restaurant information on the go, now is the perfect time to invest in digital marketing for your restaurant.

A functional restaurant does not equally translate into a successful one. Even if you do get the basics right, that is, providing good food, service, atmosphere and a decent price, you still cannot depend on just on word of mouth to keep customers coming in.

So, to make your mark in the cyberspace, add these 5 digital marketing practices to your arsenal of abilities to attract and retain customers.

1- Your Website Must Be Fully Baked


A restaurant’s website has to be well thought out and 100% functional. Moreover, a restaurant’s website should be optimized for mobile as well as the web. Having a poor restaurant website is like having rotten clams – Yukh!

The website should have proper sections so that people can easily scroll to discover pertinent information of your food place such as contact info, menus, operational hours and gallery.

2- Own Your Google Maps Listing

local listing google

Google listing plays a vital part in converting customers as it gets your restaurant on the coveted page one of search results. The more visibility you’ll have, the more credibility you’ll gain. Simply go to Google My Business to begin the process.

3- SEO & PPC All the Way


The very first step to land customers on your restaurant via digital marketing is to end up high in search results. Both organic & paid methods work well, it is just a matter of how your digital marketing stratagem is crafted- Long term or short term.

For valid time offers, it is recommended you go with PPC whereas to constantly land traffic on a specific search term, you should opt for on-page optimization. For starters, working your way parallel with SEO & PPC is the best approach.

You can start off by embedding your target keywords in your content & meta sections. Afterwards, to gain more traction, a blog can also be built to feed your audience & google bot with fresh content on relevant topics.

It is recommended to always take into consideration Local SEO as it would target audience based on area.

4-Dominate Social Media

social media marketing restaurant

A creative social media strategy is vital for successful restaurant marketing. Having a less knowledgeable social media marketer can result in neglected pages, mediocre posts, rushed posts and slow follower growth. If you’re not sure how it is done, it is time to do it properly or otherwise hire a digital marketing agency to do the job for you.

Here are some tips to get you started: -

  • Connect Facebook and Instagram accounts
  • Place social media feeds on your website
  • Use relevant hashtags
  • Create a post calendar
  • Be innovative, be creative
  • Know the “taste” of your audience

Social media is not awfully complex but it needs to be thought out and aptly executed to be effective.

Also Read:- A Peek into the Search Trends That Defined UAE’s Restaurant Industry in 2018

5- Video Is King


It is estimated that close to half of all internet users spend an hour watching video content every day. So, in order to capitalize on this format of the game, restaurant owners should spend some time working on the content that actually depicts what their brand is all about. There’s no harm in bragging a bit- as they say, a picture speaks a thousand words & when they are motion pictures, things tend to get more exciting. 

Ideas for video production: -

  • Show your hygiene standards
  • Display all your fresh ingredients
  • Publicize an in-house party
  • Go crazy on all social media platforms
  • Share offers & menu
  • Record live customer reviews

You can literally do anything to excite your audience!!!!!

 6- Cross-promote with Influencers


While you’re in the run to establish your brand identity, seek help from influencers for recommendations & word of mouth. This powerful form of marketing gets you going in no time. Invite local bloggers, restaurant critics & celebs to dine with you & ask them to share their experience or make relevant content. This usually is paid but it pays off well. 

These people normally have a large following and they can help you reach more audience & possibly more sales.

7-Email Marketing for Rapid Action


If you’ve been gathering info all along the way, then don’t let this data to go waste, use these emails for your digital marketing strategy. Just load up your marketing collateral and shoot them an email whenever you launch a product or an offer.

Digital Marketing for Restaurants in Dubai Is a Full-Time Gig!

As digital marketing for restaurants is getting more and more complex due to the massively changing algorithms & norms, relying on hit & trial marketing methods cannot move the needle as much as great food, economical price and comfortable atmosphere. To be quite honest, the basics will never change.

It can be cumbersome for restaurant owners in Dubai to be able to regulate all of the moving parts of their business and become digital marketing gurus at the same time. If you’re new to digital marketing, then call us today to learn more about how we can increase your sales via proven strategies.

Originally Published January 10, 2019 12:00 AM, Updated February 19, 2019.

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