Google’s Announcement

Restaurant Menus on Google Search Results is a new featureAre you hungry? Grab a restaurant menu on Google search results! Google made an announcement on Feb. 28, 2014 that you can “search Google to show you the menu for the eatery you’re considering and you can see it right on the top of your search page—complete with tabs for different parts of the menu . . . and, often, prices—before you make your reservation.”

You can Google “show me the menu for (the restaurant of your choice)” and Google will show you the menu for that restaurant without you having to browse through restaurants’ websites. It is not certain where Google is getting these menus from, but reportedly Google is getting them from an unknown third-party. But once this third-party is made known, restaurant owners can make sure their menu information is accurate across the web on other sites that feature restaurant menus. We also hope Google gives out more information to help restaurants ensure that the menus Google displays are current and updated.

Competition with Urban Spoon and Other Restaurant Owner Worries

This feature started out as a small test and is only available in the U.S. Not all menus are available yet, but one restaurant–Fonda San Miguel in Austin, TX–has their menu in the Google search results. Just search “show me the menu for Fonda San Miguel” and you can browse through their menu without having to go to their website. This sparks some worry for restaurant owners and especially for sites like Urban Spoon. Now customers have this easy access to the menu in Google’s search results, which may keep some customers from going  directly to the restaurant website and from going to Urban Spoon or other sites to look at menus.

So what do you think of this new feature?

 

Austin Lund