I recently wrote about restaurants with a drool-worthy desktop presence.

But when it comes to browsing on the go, which ones are winning on mobile?

A mobile-optimised site will go a long way to helping get customers through the door. 

In fact, research shows that nearly 80% of mobile searches for UK restaurants result in a booking.

Of course, mere optimisation is not always enough. There are four extra features which combine to greatly improve the user experience. 

  • Online menu (no pesky PDF's).
  • Location-based services.
  • Ability to book a table.
  • Opening times and click to call.

Here are some examples that deliver!

Online menu

Nandos

We all know what’s on the Nandos menu, right? We don't even need to look before ordering.

However, one thing that’s really great about the mobile site is that – as well as a handy spice-meter – it allows the user to calculate the nutritional value of a meal.

A feature that’s likely to be ignored by the masses, but it’s a lovely little touch for anyone on a diet and still in the mood for a cheeky bit of chicken.

  

Wagamama

There’s a vast amount of choice, but with its easy-to-navigate and in-depth mobile menu, Wagamama hopes to reduce the amount of time diners spend deciding at the table.

A short synopsis explains each meal and a handy side-bar means users can easily switch between categories.

  

Jamie’s Italian

It’s easy to dismiss the 40-strong Jamie's Italian as yet another chain, but its mobile site reflects its focus on delivering transparency to the customer.

There is a lot of information about nutrition, allergens and even gluten-free eating, and the comprehensive menu conveniently includes a filter to select vegan and healthy options.

  

Location-based services

Homeslice

A restaurant address is all well and good, but any decent mobile site will have a location-based service.

Homeslice cleverly uses copy to point the user’s attention towards its onsite map. Even better, it’s ‘take me there’ button opens up Google Maps.

  

Dirty Burger

With eleven restaurants in London alone, Dirty Burger’s website it designed around locations. 

Clicking onto each one, the user is met with contextual copy and an integrated Google Map.

The only feature that’s missing is to be able to click out to the app itself, however the added convenience of Deliveroo integration means that it's slightly forgiven.

  

Social Eating House

With its one-click navigation, Social Eating House is one of the most basic mobile restaurant sites I’ve come across. Yet, all the information is there.

The 'location’ tap takes users through to Google Maps with just one click – simple yet very effective.

   

Ability to book a table

Pizza Express

Whether you need to actually book at Pizza Express is debatable, however its mobile system is definitely worth a mention here.

With its bright and friendly design, it’s super easy to find the desired location.

What’s more, it gives the option to book with a MyPizzaExpress account, meaning loyal customers will get extra incentives and offers in future.

  

Spring

It’s unusual to find a high-end restaurant affiliated with a third-party booking system, but I was pleasantly surprised to discover Spring on OpenTable.

With its simple and elegant typography, the mobile site is very easy on the eyes, too. Being able to book a table makes it a dream.

  

STK

Most mobile booking systems tend to send you onto the third-party (e.g Bookatable), however STK’s is integrated into its own mobile site.

The reason I like this is that it makes the whole experience feel entirely seamless, allowing users to search and book a table without leaving the page.

Oh, and the prominent purple 'Book' button is impossible to miss.

  

Opening times & click to call

Caravan

Caravan splits its information by two locations - listing both its opening times and contact details on one page.

Although the phone number could be made clearer, it is clickable, and its location features are also easy to find here.

  

Wahaca

Another restaurant website that is split into locations, Wahaca's contact details are clear and precise - and pink, of course!

In fact, its mobile-site is generally above average across the board.

  

Hubbard and Bell

Finally, Hubbard and Bell is hot on letting its customers know how to get in touch.

Even better, it deserves extra points for including a phone number alongside its mobile booking sytem.

Wait, calling to reserve a table, in London? Well I never.

  

Food & Drink is one of the sectors covered at the Festival of Marketing 2016, which takes place in London on October 5-6.

Nikki Gilliland

Published 24 August, 2016 by Nikki Gilliland @ Econsultancy

Nikki is a Writer at Econsultancy. You can follow her on Twitter or connect via LinkedIn.

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