3 Ways Restaurants Use Photography to Keep Diners Wanting More

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With so many restaurants opening left, right and center, it can be challenging to know how to stand out from the pack and inspire eaters to keep coming back.

One of the ways to step up your marketing game is to have a selection of striking, high-quality snaps of your food, your food prep process, and the interior and exterior of your restaurant.

Here are three ways restaurants use photography to keep diners wanting more.

  1. On the menu

There is nothing more critical to the success of your restaurant (apart from having delicious food) than having a drool-worthy menu. No matter what cuisine you are producing, having high-quality photos of your meals can entice diners who may not otherwise enter.

Especially if you are operating in a multicultural locale, you want to ensure you are attracting all potential diners. The best way to do this is through photographs as they don’t necessitate all patrons to speak English (or whatever language your menu is in) and to have previous knowledge of your cuisine.

Additionally, customers love to know what their food is going to look like before receiving it.

To attract new diners and keep regulars coming back for more, use your menu to display your options in the most delicious-looking way by ensuring they look tasty and appealing.

Restaurants looking to boost profits should organize the photos on their menu to prominently highlight high-margin dishes.


  1. On social media

On Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest, images run supreme. To keep diners wanting more from your restaurant, you want to post a mixture of pictures on your social media accounts.

Have a balance of:

  • Images of other customers (to show other people enjoying the food)
  • Artistic, well-styled photos of your dishes (to show what diners are missing out on)
  • Backstage glimpses into your staff and the operations of your restaurant (to create a personal connection)

Keep in mind that each social platform has a different purpose, but your overall goal should be to encourage as much engagement with your audience as possible.

Re-post diners’ images of your food, restaurant, and events. Not only will this encourage guests to take photos and share them, but it will also give you free content to use to ensure you are regularly posting.

  1. On your website

If diners don’t stumble upon your restaurant when walking by, they are most likely to look your establishment up online before making a reservation or a decision.

For this reason, it is essential that your website photography is giving them a reason to come in and try your food. Too many restaurants forget that website imagery should also indicate the overall high quality of your food and restaurant.

In fact, the photography featured on your website is one of the most significant elements of your restaurant’s marketing strategy.

Ensure your chosen restaurant food photography represents your establishment’s aesthetic and makes a strong impression. For example, blurry or dull photos give the idea of a low-quality restaurant, while elegant, harmonious and sharp images imply high-quality work in all aspects.

After all, if you are, for example, the best steakhouse in your area, your website should scream that.

Feature a mix of ready-to-eat dishes with preparation shots and ingredients that are used a lot in your cuisine — all of which should look appetizing.

That being said, don’t just throw pictures up on your website for the sake of it. Each and every image should serve a purpose, from showcasing the highlights of the menu to the restaurant’s interior, so diners know the vibe of the place and clientele. As these can be some of the hardest shots to get, opt to use a trusted interior photographer.

Don’t forget that high-quality images also boost your SEO by generating searchable, organized content.

How to achieve professional-looking photos?

If you want to achieve professional-looking food images for your menus, social media accounts, and website, then you need to work with a professional food photographer. The person you use will be able to capture the best compositions for your aesthetic.

At the end of the day, in such a competitive industry, you can’t take a chance on losing potential diners due to unprofessional, unappetizing photos on your marketing materials. In other words, DIY-ing these images is not going to be good enough.

Don’t miss: Table Etiquette 101

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