The best restaurant websites have come a long way from the days of simply displaying menu items and contact details. They’ve evolved to evoke a restaurant’s sense of style, and give customers a visual taster of what they might experience during their visit. However, if your competitors already have stunning websites, how do you make yours stand out from the crowd?
Fortunately, WordPress has everything you need to create the perfect restaurant website. Not only are there a plethora of fantastic restaurant-specific themes to choose from, there are also a whole host of plugins available to help enhance your site’s functionality. By choosing plugins that are right for your needs, you can convey your restaurant’s brand effectively and encourage more customers through the door.
With the above in mind, this article reveals our eight favorite free plugins that can help you create an amazing restaurant website with ease. Let’s get cracking!
1. Food and Drink Menu
Food and Drink Menu enables you to create menus for any restaurant, bar, cafe, or other eatery, and can be displayed in various locations throughout your site.
The plugin is easy to use, and involves the use of two custom post types – Menu Items and Menus. To whip up your full menu, create the individual items using Menu Items, then group them into sections using Menus. Simple!
Key Features of Food and Drink Menu
- No limit to the number of menus and menu items you can list
- Menus can be displayed in templates, posts, pages, and widgets
- Option to create one or two column menus
- Guidance text that applies to a group of items can be included within sections (e.g. “served with rice”)
- Easy to create templates
2. Restaurant Reservations
Restaurant Reservations is a popular plugin from the same developer as Food and Drink Menu, and enables customers to book their tables from your website. The plugin offers some helpful features such as email notifications when a reservation is made, and restricting bookings outside of your establishment’s opening hours.
Key Features of Restaurant Reservations
- Confirm or reject bookings with just a few clicks
- Customizable e-mail notifications can be sent to customers to provide a receipt of request, confirmation, or rejection
- Bookings can be automatically restricted at specified dates and times
- Booking form can be placed in various site locations such as pages, posts, and widgets
3. Basic Google Maps Placemarks
Basic Google Maps Placemarks is a helpful plugin for any business with a physical location. It enables you to embed a Google Map into pages or posts using a shortcode, and you can add multiple placemarks on the map – particularly useful for businesses with more than one location.
Key Features of Basic Google Maps Placemarks
- Each placemark can have its own custom icon
- When clicked, the marker’s title and description are displayed in a box
- Choice of map type, as well as size and zoom level
- Different pages can display unique maps with their own settings
- Option to categorize placemarkers, and link each map to specific categories
WPPizza was originally designed to cater to pizza delivery businesses, but its flexibility means it’s suitable for any restaurant.
The plugin supports over 140 currencies, and can generate reports based on sales. It’s also particularly useful for those business offering food in different sized portions, as multiple prices can be set per item.
Key Features of WPPizza
- Tracks online orders and generates sales reports
- Customers can opt for different payment options, including cash on delivery
- Extensions available for adding ingredients and tiered delivery pricing
- Supports 140+ currencies
5. ReDi Restaurant Reservation
ReDi Restaurant Reservation is another plugin to help manage table bookings, and much like Restaurant Reservations, it’s easy to use.
After setting your opening hours, your establishment’s details, and enabling restrictions on seating numbers, customers can view your available tables based on their chosen time, then make a reservation directly from your website.
Key Features of ReDi Restaurant Reservation
- Enables you to view upcoming reservations from a mobile or tablet PC
- Reservation page automatically refreshes after 15 minutes
- Maximum available seats can be set depending on day of the week
- Bookings can be automatically blocked for specified dates and times
- Supports multiple locations
6. Good Reviews for WordPress
Good Reviews for WordPress is another plugin from the developer of Food and Drink Menu, and enables you to add customer reviews and testimonials to your posts, pages, and widgets.
Also, by using Schema markup, your reviews and testimonials can be integrated into search engine listings – vital for drawing in new business from search queries.
Key Features of Good Reviews for WordPress
- Option to add star or number ratings and reviewer photos to your reviews
- Enables you to add a link to increase the credibility of the review
- Better Search Engine Optimization (SEO) achieved through the use of Schema markup
- Reviews can be organized to show single reviews, all reviews, or categories
7. Quick Restaurant Menu
Quick Restaurant Menu is a great option for anyone looking for an easy-to-use menu builder that delivers a simplistic look. This plugin utilizes a drag-and-drop menu creator, and has the option to display different menus depending on the day and time.
It’s definitely quick and simple to use, and also enables you to style your menu layouts using an in-built CSS editor.
Key Features of Quick Restaurant Menu
- Can handle an unlimited number of menus and menu items
- Option to add a header and footer to each menu
- Can add a photo, description, and multiple prices to each item
- Option to insert custom CSS
8. Speed Contact Bar
The Speed Contact Bar plugin is a useful addition for any business, enabling you to display a bar at the top of every page of your site showing your establishment’s contact information.
While a plugin of this ilk may seem a little ‘unsexy’, for restaurants employing a theme that doesn’t incorporate contact information into the header, Speed Contact Bar could be crucial.
Key Features of Speed Contact Bar
- Choose which items of contact information to add to the bar
- Size, color, and fonts can be modified
- Phone icon and numbers can be clicked to trigger a phone call
- Social media icons are included
In the digital age, consumers are turning to technology more and more to connect them with places to eat. As such, it’s imperative that restaurants stay ahead of the game with their websites.
The eight plugins featured in this post can all enhance the functionality of your website, enabling you to reach customers effectively, and compelling them to do business with you. Let’s recap:
- Food and Drink Menu: A relatively easy-to-use plugin that enables you to create custom menu layouts with ease.
- Restaurant Reservations: This plugin streamlines your online reservation system, and sends email notifications to customers.
- Basic Google Maps Placemarks: A great way to display your restaurant’s physical location, and particularly useful for multi-location businesses.
- WPPizza: This pizza delivery menu plugin is flexible enough to use for any restaurant.
- ReDi Restaurant Reservation: Another reservation plugin that includes additional built-in features to help customers with online bookings.
- Good Reviews for WordPress: This plugin enables you to showcase reviews and testimonials in pages, posts, and widgets.
- Quick Restaurant Menu: A streamlined plugin that utilizes a drag-and-drop builder to deliver a simple looking menu.
- Speed Contact Bar: This plugin displays your contact information at the top of every page of your website.
Do you have any other great restaurant plugins to recommend? Let us know in the comments section below!