Do you run a catering establishment such as a restaurant, café, pizza parlor, or similar? If so, please read on because we will be explaining why you need a restaurant WordPress plugin to supercharge your business’s website.
What Is a Restaurant WordPress Plugin?
In broad terms, two main categories of restaurant plugins exist for WordPress:
These allow you to capture and manage both table and event bookings easily. As anyone in the catering and hospitality business will know, the booking system is the backbone of a restaurant, helping keep things organized and minimizing the risk of double or missed bookings. Furthermore, many plugins allow your customers to make table reservations directly online, so you do not need to be on the phone constantly.
We have an article dedicated to WordPress restaurant reservation plugins.
In their most basic form, menu plugins just display your offerings directly on your website, allowing people to decide if your establishment is right for them. However, most will take things up a few levels by letting customers order food online, perfect for takeaways and deliveries.
As with reservation plugins, menu plugins can help you stay organized and remove some of the need for telephone interactions. Check our article on WordPress restaurant menu plugins. Other plugins are available that do not fall neatly into either of those categories, such as reviews or location maps.
Why Do You Need a WordPress Restaurant Plugin?
Modern life is becoming increasingly digital, and the first port of call for most people is the internet, whether it is to check the news, shop, or find a place to eat.
Therefore, food businesses can no longer avoid having a solid online presence because that is what people now expect. At the very least, your website should showcase what you do, which means having a food menu for people to see. But as user experience is of paramount importance, it pays massive dividends to have a level of interactivity too. That means your site should be able to capture reservations, allow people to browse your food items and place orders for takeaway, offer them home delivery options, etc.
Another point to remember is that people increasingly use mobile devices such as cellphones and tablets instead of desk or laptop computers. That means your website must have a responsive design that adapts to whichever device visitors happen to be using.
Our Suggested WordPress Restaurant Plugins
We will now present some of the best WordPress restaurant plugins available in 2021 that will allow you to create a website your visitors will love. Furthermore, the plugins will help you streamline your business, leaving you more time to focus on what you do best – creating fantastic food.
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If you’re looking for a reliable online ordering system for WordPress, Orderable might just be the right plugin for you. Orderable helps local restaurants and retail shops take complete control of their revenue. Unlike many third-party ordering applications and websites that charge steep fees for every transaction, this plugin lets you take orders online completely free of charge.
Since it’s beginner-friendly, you can easily create your online ordering system in no time. With Orderable, you’ll have full control over your checkout from setting your delivery fees to adding your desired payment methods. The plugin is also mobile responsive that provides your users a seamless experience on any device.
The Orderable plugin has a free version with all the core features you need. Some of its key features include:
- Zero fees
- Looks great on any device
- Smooth ordering process
- Customizable detailed online menu
- Seamless order management
- Full checkout control
If you’re looking for add more functionality to your site, you can upgrade to Orderable Pro. The premium version costs $149 for a single site license. It gives you access to a suite of revenue-boosting features including:
- Product Addons
- Order Bumps
- Time Slots
- Order Flow
- Custom Checkout
- Checkout Tipping
- Timed Products
- and more
The Orderable plugin is relatively new with over 300 active installations on WordPress.org. Its users rated it 4.5 out of 5 stars.
Bookly is not a dedicated restaurant booking system. It is, in fact, a general booking plugin that can be used in many different applications, restaurants being one of them.
This plugin allows your customers to make table reservations online, regardless of what device they are using. Once created, the booking is automatically confirmed by email and SMS, plus it is possible to send SMS reminders nearer the time.
The free version includes the following fey features:
- Unlimited number of customizable booking forms
- Various calendar view options in the admin panel
- Customer and booking list management with filters, search, and sort
- Variable booking slot durations
- Customizable notifications
- WPML multi language integration
Bookly Pro costs $89 for a lifetime license. That adds the following features:
- More customization options
- Social media logins
- Unlimited staff members with individual schedules
- Payments gateways
- More email templates
- Google Calendar and WooCommerce compatible
- Customer list import and export
- Paid add-ons for additional customization
- Six months’ support and all future updates
Due to the fact it has so many different applications, Bookly is immensely popular, with over 50k active downloads. Users have rated it 4.2/5.0 stars.
Restaurant Menu by MotoPress is a free plugin that allows you to integrate a food ordering system into your website, even an existing one. It is suitable for all kinds of food and drink establishments. It offers an excellent experience for your customers, thanks to easy online ordering and payment.
Key features of Restaurant Menu include:
- Embed customizable in posts, pages, sidebars, or widget zones
- Grid and list layouts
- List items by category, including children’s categories with descriptions.
- Show individual menu items under different categories
- Sortable menu items and categories
- ‘Add to cart’ and ‘Buy’ buttons (customizable)
- Menu import and export
- Online payments (PayPal) or cash on delivery
- Settings for currency and taxes
- Customer order status tracking
Thanks to three available add-ons offered by the same developer, it is possible to expand the functionality of Restaurant Menu even further:
- Restaurant Menu Cart (free) shows a shopping cart in the menu bar
- Restaurant Menu Delivery (from $49) manages delivery and pick-up services per customers’ needs
- Restaurant Menu Toppings (from $49) allows you to sell extra food ingredients and drinks along with menu items
We think that Restaurant Menu is an excellent option for adding online ordering capability to your restaurant website. It gives you great functionality for free, and even the add-ons are reasonably priced.
Five Star Restaurant Reservations
Five Star Restaurant Reservations is one of the most popular plugins for accepting online table bookings, boasting 20k active downloads and a user score of 4.8/5.0 in the WordPress plugin directory. What’s more, the plugin allows you to accept or reject bookings, send email confirmations, allow bookings only within predetermined periods, and much more.
The free version of Five Star Restaurant Reservations gives you the following great set of features:
- Create a custom, mobile responsive reservation form
- Gutenberg block and shortcodes to insert the form where you want it
- Confirm or reject bookings and send automatic customer notifications by email
- Automatic email notifications when booking requests are submitted
- Alter bookings from the admin panel
- Ban undesirable customers
- Configurable party sizes
- Option for a mandatory phone number to secure a booking
For small to medium-sized restaurants, those features may be sufficient. However, larger businesses would probably benefit from the Premium version, as it adds several features to help further streamline and automate the booking process:
- Additional customization options, including fields dietary requirements, special requests, etc.
- More email customization options and automatic booking confirmations
- Integration with MailChimp
- Export bookings (PDF, Excel, or CSV)
- Configurations for the length of dining blocks and maximum number of reservations.
- Front end bookings page with real-time guest check-in
- Six months of support and updates
Five Star Restaurant Reservations Premium costs between $90 and $344, depending on how many sites you need to cover.
Even greater functionality comes with the Ultimate subscription. This costs $345 per year for one site and adds:
- Booking and late arrival reminders by SMS and email
- Accept reservation deposits
- Selection and assignment of tables
In our opinion, Five Star Restaurant Reservations is one of the best plugins for restaurants of any size as it offers a wide range of useful features and plenty of flexibility. The same developer has additional plugins that may interest you, all with great features and excellent reviews. Those are: Five Star Restaurant Reviews
\WPCafe is considerably more than just a reservation plugin – it is a full-featured restaurant solution that combines booking capture and management with menus, food ordering, pick-up, and delivery capabilities. It works with WooCommerce, so it won’t be useful to you if your site is not running that.
The extensive features bundled with the free version include:
- Wide range of reservation capture and management functions, including customizable reservation forms, seating capacity management, booking calendar, email confirmations, etc.
- Front and backend management of bookings and cancellations
- Bookings can be created or canceled by customers in the frontend
- Integrated online ordering system for delivery and takeaway orders
- Responsive online menus
- Customizable Ajax mini cart
- Shortcodes, Elementor widgets, and Gutenberg blocks
Not bad for free, right?
An upgraded Pro version is available, which currently costs from $33 per year or $95 for a lifetime subscription. That brings additional features, including:
- Reservation list displayed in the admin dashboard
- Display and print reservation details
- Booking for special days
- Automatic date and time restrictions
- Scheduling widget
- More options for placing the booking form on your site
- Extra menu and takeaway/delivery system functions
- Support and updates
Even if you have a low budget, WPCafe is a neat way of automating your restaurant business. Users have given it a full 5.0/5.0 stars, and over 4k active downloads exist. It is, in our opinion, one which you should certainly check out.
Vik Restaurants is an integrated solution for capturing and managing table bookings and takeaway/delivery food orders. That makes it ideal for dine-in restaurants that also offer takeaways or home deliveries.
The free version of Vik Restaurants gives you the following key features:
- Online reservation capture and management, including configurable opening hours
- Backend manual and offline reservations
- Takeaway/delivery order capture and management, including menus, delivery address restrictions, etc.
- Discount coupons
- Booking and order notifications (email)
- Multilingual support
A Pro version is available for a one-time payment of $99. That adds more features and functions, such as:
- Full backend booking and order management and private frontend area for operators
- More customization possibilities
- Live seat and table maps for real-time overview of reservations
- Customers and delivery location management
- Payment gateways
- SMS notifications
- Unlimited menus, products, available delivery areas, etc.
- Automated discounts and offers
- Stock management system
- Customer reviews
- Updates and support for one year
Being a relatively new plugin, Vik Restaurants is still accruing a user base. However, it has maintained a 5.0/5.0 star user rating in the WordPress plugin directory, which is impressive.
With this plugin, you can make attractive online menus and capture online orders. Furthermore, it can deal with financial things, such as different tax rates, gratuities, and discounts.
Key features you get with the free version include:
- Customizable detailed online menus
- Responsive, grid, and default layouts
- Incoming order alerts
- Configurable opening hours
- Financial features include cash payments, tip and gratuity collection, discounts, different tax rates, etc.
- Keep track of online orders
- Order reports
- Multilanguage capable
As already mentioned, the plugin is highly customizable via a range of (paid) extensions. Examples of these include:
- Add extra ingredients such as toppings
- Online payment gateways
- Delivery by Zipcode
- Stock management
- Coupons, discounts, and reward schemes
- PDF invoices
- Mailing lists
While the extensions allow you to tailor the plugin to suit your exact needs, their price can accumulate fast if you want all the bells and whistles. Therefore, we recommend investing in the ‘All Access Pass.’ Costing from €199 per annum, that gives you full access to absolutely everything.
This plugin has earned an excellent reputation, with an average user score of 5.0/5.0. Therefore, if you want a highly customizable option where you can pick and choose the features you need, WPPizza could well be worth the investment.
Food Menu is refreshingly simple to use the plugin for adding attractive food and drink menus to your business’s website. It is possible to add the menus to pages, posts, templates, or widgets. Online ordering capability is also possible through integration with WooCommerce.
The free version of Food Menu provides the following:
- Display all menu items with fields for title, description, category, order, price, excerpt, featured image
- Custom detail page template
- Device responsive
- Currency selection option
- Shortcodes and custom meta fields CSS
- Fully translatable (POT files provided)
Upgrading to the Pro version costs between $21 and $99 per year, depending on the number of domains you wish to cover. That is remarkable value, as it brings the following additional features to the table:
- More layout options, including an Isotope layout with search field and buttons for filter and show all
- Configurable number of menus per page
- Single menu item popup
- Display image size options, including a resizer
- Visual composer add-on
- Wide range of customization options
- Support and updates
- 30-day moneyback guarantee
Additionally, Pro subscription renewals attract a 20% discount for all successive years. That means you will pay just $16.80 for a single site to continue receiving updates and support.
Over 1k active downloads of Food Menu are currently active, and users rate it highly, awarding it 4.9/5.0 stars.
Easy Restaurant Menu Upload
If all you need is a clean, simple way of adding menus to your website, Easy Restaurant Menu Upload is right up your street.
This plugin dispenses with the reams of features offered by others and simply allows you (or your authorized employees) to upload and manage PDF menus to your site. Nothing more, nothing less, but perhaps all you need.
Key features of the free plugin include:
- Authorize employees to add menus to the website, with no access for them to other areas of your WordPress backend
- Two food or drink menu types supported
- Locate menus anywhere using shortcodes
- Multilanguage support
- Add guidance text to the uploader for authorized employees
- Optional immediate redirect to the menu upload page when staff log in
- Use on any number of websites
A Premium version of this plugin is also available. It costs €8 for ten domains, or €24 for unlimited, and just adds updates and unlimited food and drink menu types.
Easy Restaurant Menu Upload is a relatively new plugin with only around 300 active downloads currently in operation. However, it has managed to accrue a five-star user rating. We think this is a great option where you want to keep your website nice and simple.
Reviews are essential for establishing trust in any business, particularly those in the catering world.
Site Reviews lets your customers submit reviews with star ratings between one and five. Furthermore, it is possible to pin reviews to the top of the list, allowing you to showcase your best ones.
Other features of the free version of Site Reviews include:
- Assign reviews to categories, pages, or users
- Block reviews that contain specific names, words, phrases, email addresses, and IP addresses
- Limit reviews by username, IP address, or email address
- Show summaries of reviews and ratings from high to low
- Approve reviews before publishing and add responses to reviews
- Built-in templates
- Email notifications when reviews are received
- Option to require reviewers to be logged in (discourages fake reviews)
- Spam protection
- Shortcodes and widgets
- Gutenberg and Elementor compatible
- Multilingual support
- Developer friendly
- JSON-LD schema to show reviews and ratings in search results
- Third-party review importer (CSV)
Site Reviews Premium comprises a bundle of extensions that add filters, images, and custom forms. The price of that starts at €89 per year and includes updates and premium support.
We recommend starting with the free version first as it offers plenty of handy functions and will allow you to begin accepting reviews on your site quickly. But, of course, you can always invest in the Premium offering later.
A massive 30k active downloads of Site Reviews exist, and it has earned a very respectable 4.9/5.0 user rating.
Which Restaurant Plugin is Best for You?
This is a highly awkward question to answer, as it largely depends on your individual needs. For example, Easy Restaurant Menu Upload would be the ideal plugin if you only want to add menus to your website. However, if you are looking for something that combines menus with booking capture and management, one of the all-in-one solutions, such as WPCafe, might be a good fit.
All the plugins we have listed have free versions, and even the paid versions are generally competitively priced. So why not try out the free versions of the plugins that appeal to you most first? Then, when you have decided which is the best fit for your business, you can upgrade to the paid version for the extra features.
What’s Your Favorite WordPress Restaurant Plugin?
Do you already have a website for your catering business that allows you to showcase your menu as well as capture bookings and food orders? If you do, which plugin(s) are you using for that? And if you have yet to beef up your website, did any of the plugins we suggested grab your attention?