July 31, 2018

Restaurant Social Media KPIs that matter in 2018 and how to improve them

As a restauteur, you will be well aware about the importance of being active on social media…The statistics speak for themselves:

  1. Over 1 billion restaurant visits by consumers are influenced by online marketing (Monetate).
  2. Out of all industries, consumers read restaurant reviews more than any other industry (Bright Local).
  3. Since 84% of people trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations for dining decisions, it’s key you have a bunch of positive reviews (Bright Local).
  4. A half-star difference on a Yelp review rating can swing restaurant business by a whopping 27% (Foodbeast).
  5. Restaurants who respond to customers on social media will win as 71% say they’re more likely to recommend a company that responds quickly to them on social media (Forbes).
  6. A growing number of social media users (37%) search apps to research companies for more information before making a purchasing decision (eMarketer).
  7. Online orders are growing in popularity as 57% of customers order their food from a website (Toast Tab).

And, if that wasnt enough, here are some other general stats you will find equally amazing:

In 2018, with the amount of increased noise and competiton, customers want to build a stronger connection to their favourite restaurant brands. They are also looking for new places to visit on social media channels and are eager to go above and beyond the ordinary in order to connect with the most innovative companies out there.

In 2018, marketers in the UK will spend £3.3 billion ($4.2 billion) on social network advertising, a 24% increase over 2017. eMarketer has increased its projections for social networking advertising spend by almost 5 percentage points since the previous forecast, due to diversification in the marketplace which is driving up overall social network user rates and resulting in increased spend.

The question for you is this: How can I ensure that my social media efforts are making the right impact on the market? In other words, how can you assess the performance of your social media tactics, both free and paid? The answer is quite simple – you need to use social media KPIs (key performance indicators).

Good social media tactics are extremely beneficial to your company as a whole. In addition to allowing you to go viral and getting you tons of high-quality traffic, social signals boost your SEO and enable you to rank high in Google and Bing for your chosen set of keywords. However, to determine the performance of your social media efforts, you need to know what are the right KPIs to look at.

Because social media is such a vast platform, when looking at the target KPIs, you first need to look at the area they are part on. There are 4 main areas that you need to consider when looking at social media KPIs:

  1. Engagement

  2. Reach

  3. Leads

  4. Conversions

Below, we will dive deeper into each area and present you with several social media KPIs that you need to look at in 2018.

1. Engagement

Engagement is perhpas the most important Key Performance Indicator (KPI) for your restaurant marketing campaigns . This is the catalyst for improvement of all other social media KPIs. In other words, engagement is the main focus area for social media for campaigns such as those for restaurants where lead generation iI secondary.

Engagement measures the amount of shares, like, subscribers, retweets or comments that your updates receive. By having a high reach, but low engagement rate, it means that your marketing message does not resonate with your audience. Reaching thousands of people is pointless if they are not interested in what you have to offer.


In social media, the size of your audience is less important esp. for restaurants where you’ll usually be targeting a smaller area. What really matters is whether or not your audience is engaged.


A small audience that engages with you is much better than a huge audience that does not share, comments or likes your posts.

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and other social media platforms perceive engagement as a sign of popularity and quality. Thus, the higher your post engagement, the higher the chances to rank high in the social media SERPs. Some posts may even appear on the first pages on Google and Bing.

The actual KPIs you can measure in the engagement category vary by social media platform, but typically include the following:

Likes: this KPI is important for your restaurant’s success online. When exploring the decision to visit a nw restaurant many users will naturally gravitate towards restaurant pages that are more popular, likes increase their attention and boost your overall performance. Moreover, pages or posts with more likes are perceived as being more important by social platforms.

Try to get more likes by developing a smart social media strategy and by crafting a great page, posting high-quality content, hosting Facebook contests, running Facebook ads and using the Facebook algorithm in your advantage.

Clicks: link clicks show the relevancy of your images and call-to-actions. While raving fans will click on everything you share, the vast majority of new people who see your posts will only click on really interesting stuff.

To get more clicks, fine-tune your posts and ads, including relevant, high-quality images and catchy titles and call-to-actions.

Shares: social media shares are a very important KPI. They are more important than likes, because they show that a user is so interested in what you provide that they are willing to share the post on their own timeline. When someone shares your post, or for that matter retweets or re-vines it, they are personally recommending it to their peers. That says something about the quality of your posts.

Comments: the whole point of social media is to get people to interact with you and to talk to you. The best way to do that is through comments. Relevant content always sparks a new conversation. Sometimes, even a critical comment is better than nothing. Getting comments is a strong signal that you are hitting all the right points of interest in your target niche.

Brand mentions: a brand mention is a tag which shows how many people are having a conversation about a certain brand. Twitter is famous for this, but you can also find brand mentions on Facebook and LinkedIn. If you are starting a new campaign, create a new hashtag for your brand and use it to measure your impact on social media. A high number of brand mentions show that you are capable of maintaining top-of-mind awareness in your niche.

NPS: Net Promoter Score is a new social media KPI that is growing in popularity day by day. You should use the right tools in order to measure the NPS score and to find out why your detractors are not happy with your services. NPS could prove to be invaluable, especially for businesses that want to invest in their long-term growth & development.

Active followers: an active follower is a social media user that has interacted with your content in the past 30 days. You can track the number of active followers you got using tools such as ManageFlitter. Use it to discover fake or irrelevant followers and remove them ASAP. It is pointless to maintain a high number of followers if most of them will never interact with you or purchase from you.

Profile visits: ultimately, profile visits are a very important social media KPI because it enables users to go down the funnel, to the next step. Social media users who visit your site suddenly turn from fans into potential customers, or prospects. They begin to discover more about your services and may be convinced to buy from you.

For Instagram, here is a quick guide to help you get more profile visits: https://www.wordstream.com/blog/ws/2016/10/19/get-more-instagram-followers

2. Reach

Even though reach might be considered an old-school metric, it is still quite important today. This metric indicates how far your messages are reaching, and also how fast they travel. In the hugeness of social media world, reach is very important at keeping track of your efforts.

You can measure reach by looking at the following KPIs:

1. Followers/Fans: the total number of people who are following your brand on social media might indicate your actual reach.

2. Impressions: the number of impressions for your paid ads and organic posts is also very important. You need to reach as many people as necessary if you want to be relevant and to boost your brand awareness. With impressions, it means that a certain number of people had a chance to look at your ad. The engagement rate comes next, representing the number of people who took an action versus the total number of views.

To boost impressions, you need to craft high-quality messages and select visually appealing photos. For Ads, you have to bid for CPM (Cost per One Thousand Impressions). This will ensure that your ad will be showed to as many people as possible.

3. Traffic data: now this is the fun part. You need to use Google Analytics, together with other Social Media Analytics tools, in order to track how many traffic you get from social media. If you are investing a good amount of time on SMM (Social Media Marketing), you are probably willing to ensure that the traffic data reflects that.

3. Leads

Now that your social media account is getting traction and you are getting good reach and engagement, it is time to move to the next step and think of how your business can make a profit out of this. In order to ensure you are getting the highest ROI (Return on Investment) from your social media efforts, you need to take a closer look at your leads.

You might have an enormous database, but how does it translate into new sign ups, sales and orders? To put it another way, maybe you have only a small database of social media fans, but they are consistently buying from you. Which one would you prefer to have?

Measuring lead generation is key if you want to maximize your time & money investment on social media channels. You should also take a look at what your Analytics tools are telling you.

In case you are not making any leads from social media efforts, you are either focusing on the wrong platform, or your content is not as engaging as it should be to the end user.

4. Conversion

Yes, your social media customers are vital for your company’s success. Once you get a consistent number of leads, the last step of the funnel is to transform them into customers. Customers bring true value to your company and can be easily transformed into evangelists.

While most of your social media posts should be focused on providing value to your prospects and having a conversation with them, sometimes you need to ask something in return. When that time comes, make sure to promote yourself big time and showcase your high-quality services.

When designing Facebook ads and especially Lead Ads, getting conversions and customers should be your final objective. In the end, sales are all that matter. Pay attention to which social media channels bring in the highest number of customers and invest your budget in those channels, rather than creating campaigns on all social media platforms.

Tracking Metrics is Important

It is crucial to use the best social media KPI tracking tool in order to assess the results of your digital campaigns. Restaurants for example have a very good social media agency at their disposal – Digital Restaurant.

As a restaurant marketing agency with over 7 years of experience in the UK digital market, Digital Restaurant offers bespoke social media solutions and enables UK-based restaurants to position themselves as an authority in the dining niche.

Conclusion

Measuring your social media success is a must for assessing your performance on social platforms. While engagement and reach are very important to measure, since they make your brand look good in the eyes of potential customers, your final goal is to track the KPIs that help you paint the full picture. Those KPIs are leads, conversions and customers.

In the end, after everything is said and done, you will be able to convert customers into true evangelists of your brand. They will eagerly spread the news about your company and will bring in extra prospects eager to know you better.

Do not minimize the importance of social media KPIs. Instead, learn to use them to enhance your social media efforts, boost your sales and skyrocket your brand awareness.