Lone Star is one of New Zealand’s longest standing and most loved restaurant brands with multiple locations across the country. We’re proud to partner with Lone Star on many projects, including the refresh and redevelopment of their website. We wanted the new website to showcase the Lone Star experience and what you can expect when visiting one of the 28 restaurants throughout NZ and to provide customers with relevant information as quickly as possible.
To ensure the new website performed better and achieved results we started by analysing the performance of the website as it was, using tools such as Google Analytics and Crazy Egg click tracking to determine how users were behaving.
Analytics showed that the industry was mobile dominant so we took a mobile-first approach.
We established that most people are looking for menu and locations so these needed to be prominent and have a simple navigation pathway.
Google Analytics established the two key points of entry to the website were the homepage and location pages. Both had to be considered as the first point of engagement in order to make a good first impression. For this reason, some national level content is now shown on the location pages as well.
For the homepage, we wanted to provide customers with relevant information as quickly as possible, which meant finding out what region or site they are most likely to visit. For this reason, we made selecting a location the primary call to action from any page.
We wanted to bring forward national promotions and offers and have the ability to feature these throughout the site. Location specific promotions were also considered, with a visual display of these on those individual location pages.
It was also important to have a dedicated function page for each Lone Star location. Again, this allows specific and relevant content to be shown to a user quickly, while also allowing the ability to rank in Google organic search results for location based searches (eg. function rooms Dunedin). This tactic has seen a great rise in function enquiries.
A video in the main banner area showcases the Lone Star experience and captures a user's attention.
The layout is image focused but with a careful use of white space so users aren’t visually overwhelmed.
Promotions are featured with varying hierarchy.
Geolocation detection. On the location page (Find a Lone Star) the location of the website user is detected and results are prioritised based on the region that user is searching from, allowing results to be much more relevant.
Multiple forms throughout the website (all integrated with PlatoMail). This means that whenever someone fills in a form on the website they are automatically added to different email lists to allow ease of use for email marketing.
Functionality to show or hide features on the promotions page based on time/date. This means they can be set up in advance and it’s all automated, making managing this content much easier.
We continue to see improvements in the overall bounce rate compared to the old website. During December 2016 the bounce rate was 37% compared to 45% during December the previous year. The lower the bounce rate the better! This shows people are more engaged, spending longer and visiting more pages before exiting the site.
While we have no firm comparative stats, feedback from Lone Star that they are seeing high numbers of function enquiries is positive.
Website traffic is growing month on month. Also, in December 2016, website traffic had increased by 33% compared to the same period in 2015.