Kyle Welter works at Tock, an ethical online booking and restaurant management software company.
We look at how Google Adwords works for Restaurants. Not many Restaurants use Google Adwords, but companies like OpenTable and Dimmi use it very aggressively to come between their 'Restaurant partners' and the restaurant customers.
We look at Arbitrage. This is the process where you buy something in one market and sell it in another market at a higher price.
Companies like Dimmi and OpenTable use Adwords Arbitrage to steal your customers contact details (and sometimes they don't share them with you!) and as well as creating the impression that it is their marketing that is bringing customers to you, when in fact it is often your existing, regular customers that OpenTable is charging you a higher price to take that booking.
The email address is the easiest way to communicate with your customers and Adwords Arbitrage allows Dimmi and OpenTable to get between your customers
Online Ordering has very similar practices. Restaurants are paying 13% commission and not getting the customers email address, so they can't remarket to the customer, they have to rely on JustEat, Menulog or GrubHub to provide them their next customer. This is how Online Ordering aggregators build dependence on their platforms and extract such high fees for doing it.
The impact for Restaurants can be crippling. We see Restaurants paying over $1,000 a month in commissions, and some high traffic restaurants can be a lot higher, which for some restaurants can be the difference from staying in business and bankruptcy, or being not profitable and profitable, so the choice of booking or ordering partner is a crucial part of your marketing plan and even your business plan.
We talk about dynamic pricing. This as an area that Tock specialises in. Charge more for your peak times, and drive demand out into the shoulder times. Airlines drive yield utilisation with dynamic pricing and popular restaurants should be looking at charging different prices for different tables, different days and different hours to dine in their restaurant. Dynamic pricing with pre paid bookings significantly decreases no shows as well.
We also talk about the Google knowledge panel and how restaurants can better manage it.
The best advice is to open a chrome browser in incognito mode and search for your Restaurant. Look at who is running ads and look at the information in the Google Search Panel. You may want to try different times of the day. This will give you a really good idea of what your customers are seeing when they Google for your Restaurant.
If you need access to free tools to help your grow your email database without paying commissions and without sharing your customers contact details, check out: