Happy Monday, everyone. Hope you had a great weekend.
One of my colleagues last week drew my attention to a funny article on Slate.com about restaurant websites. The writer, Farhad Manjoo, takes to task the owners of some high-end restaurants such as Fleur de Lys in San Francisco, Buddakan in New York and Cavatore in Houston for what he calls”maliciously poorly designed pages” so flashy and difficult to navigate that they are a complete waste of readers’ time.
Manjoo seems to be saying that people just want to know whether the food sounds good and the prices sound doable, but instead they get a lot of show and pizazz, with little valuable content.
I’ve noticed that a lot of restaurant chains and some of the fanciest restaurants in America have very flashy, sometimes annoying websites. But none of that has ever bothered me as much as searching for a restaurant online, only to find that they have no online presence at all, not even a Facebook page.
To me, it seems obvious that if you’re going to open a restaurant, you should have someplace for people to land when they search your name. A lot of folks use the Internet for all of their searching needs these days, and that includes searches for places to eat. When I look up a restaurant, I’m often looking for the telephone number, address and the menu.
I have no problem with restaurants skipping their own web pages for Facebook pages. Some restaurant Facebook pages have more useful information, including uploaded menu pages, than their websites may have had. And I enjoy seeing the community around a restaurant, which comes out in the comments left by regulars. Choosing Facebook also saves money, which makes a lot of sense for restaurateurs these days.
What do you think of Manjoo’s article, if you care? Do you have a favorite local restaurant website?