NEWTON, Mass., Aug. 16, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- ThriveSpot™, an innovative new program, is helping the restaurant industry meet the exploding use of mobile devices by providing free mobile websites, including hosting, to restaurants looking to attract the growing numbers of consumers using mobile formats to find a place to eat and socialize. The free mobile sites also answer growing consumer demand for functionality in restaurant websites by providing direct links for online services such as reservations and ordering, one-click access to menus and other important information, and connections to social-media such as Groupon™, FourSquare™, and others.
"The restaurant industry is not keeping pace with the wireless revolution and the demands of consumers who are increasingly using mobile devices to make purchasing decisions about what and where to eat," said ThriveSpot™ COO Chuck Ellis. According to a survey by the Cornell Center for Hospitality Research, only about 16% of restaurant chains have a mobile presence on the Internet. Ellis said ThriveSpot's own survey shows less than 1% of independent restaurants have a mobile website. "Clearly the industry has some catching up to do," he added.
"ThriveSpot™ helped us easily and quickly get a real mobile presence for all of our concepts and services, which is essential for a restaurant group striving to stay ahead of the curve," says Jeffrey Gates, of Aquitaine Restaurant Group in Boston. "When a consumer visits an existing web address for one of our restaurant concepts from their mobile device, such as www.unionrestaurant.com for Union in Boston's South End, they are automatically directed to a special mobile version of our site."
To help close the gap in the mobile marketplace for restaurants, pubs, bar & grills, and other food and beverage establishments, ThriveSpot™ has developed a highly-customizable template that enables users to quickly and easily configure a fully-featured mobile website designed specifically for restaurants. According to Ellis, customers coming to the restaurant's regular website from a mobile device automatically get routed to a more efficient mobile website where they receive essential information about the restaurant, including the ability to locate it, review menu choices, place a call, make a reservation, order a meal, or even request delivery.
According to Ellis, participating restaurants provide product information which is included in a blinded and aggregated pool with similar data from thousands of other restaurants. This anonymous data is used to help both restaurants and suppliers understand and address consumer preferences. He added that, by late fall, restaurants will also receive information on how their own establishment is performing compared to a blinded group of similar restaurants in their market.
"This program is designed to help restaurants quickly take advantage of the mobile marketplace and boost sales in the food and beverage industry in general," commented Ellis. "Restaurants get the fast, efficient mobile websites they need to meet changing consumer preferences, consumers get easy mobile access anywhere at any time to make dining and entertainment decisions, and the industry gets important information about product sales to better support both restaurant operators and their consumers."
ThriveSpot™ is a free program that delivers innovative tools to restaurants. Members employ a host of applications and services that allow them to reach and connect with more customers, gain unprecedented insight, more closely monitor their business, and better understand positioning in their geographical market. Members are currently enjoying free benefits like Mobile Websites and Social Media Monitoring– with more to come. To learn more, visit http://www.thrivespot.com.
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