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BizReport : Ecommerce archives : July 02, 2012

A third of restaurants "hidden" from Olympic visitors from lack of website

The 2012 London Olympics will see a huge influx of visitors to the UK, many of which will be lining the pockets of businesses up and down the country. But, according to the Livebookings European Dining Index, many restaurants in the UK will be missing out on these extra revenues.

by Helen Leggatt

livebookingsLogo.gifRecently released data from revealed that the number of site visits from overseas visitors has increased dramatically (130%) over the past few weeks. Top of the most-searched for list is restaurants.

"The increase in overseas visitors looking for vouchers and deals that coincide with the start of the Olympics has been staggering and with restaurant vouchers topping the most searched for lists it is clear that people are coming over to party; and that the economy is going to benefit in a big way!" said George Charles, marketing director of

However, the latest European Dining Index from Livebookings, a global online marketing and real-time reservations services for restaurants, reveals that a third of restaurants in the UK are missing out on revenues. Why? Because they don't even have a basic website, let alone a mobile presence.

The increase in online and mobile bookings is evident. Comparing the first quarter of 2011 with the first quarter of 2012, online restaurant bookings in the UK have doubled, and bookings through mobile devices have almost trebled.

Across Europe, online and mobile bookings are rising - in Sweden mobile bookings have risen by 197% and online bookings by 54% in the same period, while Germany has seen 260% and 28% increases respectively.

With, or without, the Olympic event, Livebookings estimates that the average restaurant that does not have an online or mobile presence is losing out to the tune of over US$48,000 (£31,000) in revenue each year.

"Restaurants not making use of online, mobile and social bookings is almost tantamount to adopting a no children policy; they shut themselves off to roughly the same amount of potential business," said Colin Tenwick, CEO of Livebookings.

"A significant proportion of customers looking for a restaurant start their search online or on mobile. Almost all other consumer-facing sectors, including retail and travel, have radically changed their marketing strategies to respond to that, and now it's time for all UK restaurants to do the same."

Tags: ecommerce, Europe, food and beverage, mobile, Olympics, online bookings, online marketing, online sales, revenue, UK, website

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