One Hour Cafeteria

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Shane at One Hour Cafeteria had a typical restaurant owner dilemma. He had enough skills and know-how to build a basic website, but as a busy restaurant owner, he found it hard to find the time to complete the project.

He had been working on the One Hour website on and off for over year on Dreamweaver, a tool that he felt he could learn had he had enough time to devote to it but constant interruptions made it difficult to retain learnings.

In the mean time, Shane had directed his restaurant website to their Facebook page as a temporary solution and did not want to loose the customer interaction and easy posting ability of Facebook but needed a bit more structure and control. And while Facebook was great for sharing with exiting followers, Facebook was not ideal for search optimization and since One Hour had many traditional Chinese specialities that were not found at other restaurants and bubble tea places in Toronto, it would be a missed opportunity to not optimize this for search.

As a photographer and architecture student, Shane had a great eye for design and took a hands-on approach to everything from the menus to the decor.

And as a generally tech savvy person, Shane was very comfortable working with different applications on his computer and iPhone and was always eager to learn the latest tools.

He wanted to maintain his creative control but needed things to run a little more efficiently.

We started with one On-site Working Session to go over the functionality of WordPress and the different options so he could decide if this was the right solution for him. Since WordPress offers a free service, we were able to setup a basic site with a wordpress.com domain to play around and test.

To my surprise when I returned, Shane had already registered for the paid service and updated the site to a custom font and was eager to continue.

Most of the time, Shane would sit with me looking at different templates options, discussing copy objectives and messaging, re-working menu layout and descriptions, and learning the tool as we went. However, as things came up at the location he could easily look after it and come back as needed.

We wanted to keep the voice of One Hour as Shane would eventually be taking over posting and messaging himself but we also wanted to ensure key content pieces like menu items and contact details were optimized.

Braised Beef Noodle 红烧牛肉面

with selected beef shank & beef flank, served in regular size only

became

Braised Beef Noodle | 红烧牛肉面

braised beef & beef shank with hand-made wheat noodles in a spicy broth, served with traditional Chinese greens & pickled vegetables.

One Hour took a lot of pride in their food choices and menu items but it wasn’t shining through in their original copy. We wanted to highlight their unique offering and help customers understand the quality of their product and therefore pricing.

We also wanted to minimize the time needed to explain menu items to customers. With a limited, bilingual sometimes trilingual staff, and a unique menu offering, explaining menu items often slowed down service.

Being well-versed in food myself, and being on-site with Shane to view, discuss, google translate, and occasionally sample individual ingredients or menu items as needed, we were able to quickly work out menu descriptions that both enticed and described.

While at times initially a little frustrated with some limitations of the WordPress offering, Shane quickly saw that limiting choice meant less time spent fiddling with options that at the end of the day had little to no impact on the bottom line. And armed with a better  understanding of digital marketing and his options he could always change items as needed using custom development. While initially insistent on his vision, as the project went on he would often respond with “it’s not that important” when we discussed custom options understanding that while a design may look slightly better in his personal opinion, the overall impact on return was not worth the effort.

It was a pleasure working with Shane and on One Hour’s website. They bring an offering of Chinese cuisine that is close to my heart and that I’m happy to help share with a larger audience.

For more information please contact Alice at alice.tu[at]sustainablemrk[dot]com or by phone at +1 (647) 895-4881.