To Create a Restaurant Website With WordPress and WooCommerce

I have a restaurant client that wants to sell related products nationally through his website. He also wants to start both in-house and online cooking courses through a membership/ subscription. He is currently on Wix. I'm thinking a move to WordPress with woo-commerce is his best bet. I don't normally work on WordPress, Wix, SquareSpace so not sure what's the best option for future growth.
Anyone with experience in this area and what would be your recommendation?
4 πŸ‘πŸ½419 πŸ’¬πŸ—¨


Depends on how he wants to conduct the online classes. Get that hammered out first. You have plenty of great options in WordPress. Then go ask this question in a advanced WordPress group.
I see recommendations for Woo coming in here. That may not be your best option for online classes. Like I said, figure out how he or she wants to conduct the classes first. Will it be live streaming? Or prerecorded and do at your own pace? Or maybe even private access to YouTube videos? That will determine what you need (spoken as a 25 year web dev veteran who was building plugins before plugins existed – yep, in Perl and CGI for those in the know – in case you're wondering what I know)
Funny thing. I just read an industry report this am about platforms and WIX not only fared quite well, but seems to have fixed many of their past "issues." It was also significantly faster than WordPress/Woo on mobile. Your client will like it because it's super low maintenance and unless he has a budget for ongoing maintenance (which most restaurants do not), he'll value no monthly fee from you. The compromise is that it is less flexible. For example, will his existing online ordering and reservation system integrate into Wix? It may not but nearly all integrate into WP.

Platform should be based on their business needs.
Also a class will integrate into WP/Woo much more easily.

The fact that many SEO providers hate Wix and don't want to work with it doesn't mean it can't do the job. It's a lot of work to convert a site from one platform to another. Be sure that moving from Wix to anything else creates an advantage worth gaining.
Maybe WooCommerce is that advantage. I don't know.
But don't let people's negativity toward Wix influence your recommendation. We all have our own preferences. That doesn't make any one platform better (for Search Engine Optimization (SEO)) than another. I can think of many disadvantages to WordPress.
Ammon Johns πŸŽ“
Squarespace is one you can firmly rule out in my opinion. It's the least compatible with Core Web Vitals (CWV) for a start, and it really only stays relevant at all through extensive advertising (they 'sponsor' literally hundreds of popular YouTube channels on a fairly regular basis). In other words, the only time I ever hear anything good said of it is when the person saying it has been paid to do so.
Wix has a terrible reputation that it firmly earned in the past, especially with some absolutely disastrous marketing efforts that overhyped its SEO friendliness (when it was still crap). They've improved a lot in the last couple of years. BUT, that doesn't change the fact that the people at the top, owning the company, did some very shitty stuff in the past. Wouldn't touch them with a Neil Patel.
Duda are a up and coming major rival to both of the above, without the negative baggage. It's another like the above – a platform for making a site for people who don't want to learn how to actually build a site. I have no idea how far (or how easily) one can push the boundaries of Duda for long term growth, but for a limited scope start it can be very worthwhile.
WordPress is, of course, very much a tried and tested halfway ground between using a completely managed website builder (like all of the above) where you honestly don't need to know anything to get a site up and running (but it may be hard to do any meaningful technical SEO on), and a site that is actually built for specific purpose and can thus be infinitely tweaked, improved, and adapted for any future needs. But it is still that halfway point, not all the way there.
It may be best to start out with a website builder such as Wix or Duda simply to prove the basic viability of the business, to be able to test out the business model, etc. The limitation of these is mainly in the ability to customize the back-end for technical SEO, but you don't *need* SEO at all to simply test if there is a market, and whether his dreams of supplying it are realistic. Adwords and other marketing should be enough to prove the viability, and require a lot less up-front investment than a full-scale SEO effort.
The results, and practical experience, gained from using that approach can then be used to justify a proper investment, AND provide meaningful knowledge of exactly what works and doesn't, what the major factors of conversion were, and so make for a better idea of what to expand into for stage 2, or if to do so at all.


Truslow πŸŽ“
I'm a WordPress fan for the sheer volume of things I can get and do right out of the box (or with very little work to make things work). Most all the services out there have hooks for WP which they may or may not have with other platforms.
If I were looking at your scenario with WordPress I'd be thinking WooCommerce for the product sales and the core order processing system. You can connect something like LearnDash for the online cooking courses (there are actually several options for that – some better suited for different things. Search "WordPress LMS" and you'll get rolling on things to look at and try). WooCommerce has a booking module for booking live classes. There are also calendar systems out there that might work if you need to promote other things – and those calendar systems often have booking modules that can hook in to it all too.
Be looking for things that work together – either by design or that can connect with Zaps from Zapier or something like that. You may also find that your client's POS system has Application Programming Interface (API) hooks and such so that modules exist or zaps can be created to allow people to order takeout directly from the web site and have a ticket pop up in the kitchen just as if it originated in house.
Another cool thing here is that you can look at the big picture and then decide budget won't allow it all right away – but you can get a good foundation built and then grow modularly. Dump some money in now and get a couple revenue streams flowing and then sink some of that money back in to grow into the next phase and so on.
There's a lot of labor and careful planning that goes into all this, but the cool thing is that the software exists – which makes that end of it quite affordable.


I've not worked on an eCommerce site, but in my experience, Wix (and other economy website builders) lacks integrations for things you may want like Facebook Pixel or Adwords integration. The company I work for was with GoDaddy website builder when I started and there was no way they could track leads. You can integrate analytics, but you can't add tracking codes to individual pages like a thank you page to track conversions.
Eddie ✍️
Awesome comments from everyone. I appreciate the feedback
Kathy Β» Eddie
Please listen to Truslow's advice above. He is RIGHT ON!!
And I'll say it again because nothing else matters, not yet anyway. Do not make a decision on anything until you know HOW you're going to conduct those classes!!!! That's #1. Get a list of your needs, then look at your options and pick the one that meets those needs the best. (My exclamation points are a reaction to some of the comments you are getting here. I'm worried you'll take them as gospel.)
Stockbridge also mentions foundation. If you build with the wrong foundation, you may not be able to scale it with more features as you grow or can afford it. I've had several clients over the years come to me when they needed an upgrade, but who had to throw everything away they built because they didn't think this through in the beginning. The horror stories I could tell.
I'll leave you with one more piece of advice. This is the wrong place to be asking that question. This is an SEO group. If I were you, I'd get a consultation with a developer who has the EXPERIENCE setting up systems LIKE THIS, perhaps someone with initials ST. πŸ™‚


50 Easy E-commerce Growth Hacks

8-Figure E-commerce Business

An SEO Case Study Improved 30 Percents of Prev Traffic in 3 Months on an eCommerce Website

Google-Confirmed Local Ranking Factors: Keyword match, Backlinks, HQ Reviews

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *