A brand new year is around the corner, which means that if you haven’t already, you really need to get started planning marketing strategies.

What’s one of the most important components of your marketing strategy? Your website!

In today’s business world, you need to have an online presence. In fact, your accessibility via the World Wide Web is so important that if you don’t have a website, you are losing out on some serious business—but you already knew that.

So, is your website ready for the upcoming year? Wondering what else to focus on? Here are three absolute musts:

Mobile marketing

If you have a smartphone or tablet, be honest, how many times a day do you use it to access the web? If you’re like more than 28 percent of the people who use mobile devices, you are probably using your mobile device a heck of a lot to stay connected.

This information is quite telling for the success of your website. It means that for 2014, you really need to be on top of your mobile website game. First of all, do you have a mobile site?

If you don’t, you need to. If you have a mobile site, or once you do, you need to make sure it is easy to use and that it offers the information users are looking for (menus, hours of operation, contact information, special events and any other pertinent information relating to your business).

Making sure your mobile website is current and easy to use will make a huge difference in the success of your business.

Social media word of mouth

It used to be that news traveled quickly through word of mouth. In a day and age where social media is so prevalent, posts, tweets and status updates have taken place of traditional word of mouth, and are even more effective at spreading news.

For businesses, social media has become one of the biggest and most important facets in the marketing world.

In setting your marketing strategy for your restaurant for 2014, make sure you are taking full advantage of the power of social media. Post regular updates to all of your social media profiles, including pictures, information (menu changes, special events, etc.) and simple posts that say, “Hey! How are you? If you’re looking for a great place to eat, come check us out!” And make sure it’s easy and obvious for your customers and fans to go back and forth from your website to your social media pages.

You will be amazed how quickly news about your restaurant will spread when you take advantage of the power of social media.

Messaging

Another thing you really need to take advantage of in 2014 is messaging. Social media and a mobile website are both excellent ways to keep in contact with your customers, but messaging really steps up that contact and creates an even more powerful effect. When you send out messages, such as emails or texts, you are connecting directly with your customers. This contact puts you directly in the line of site of your customers. They don’t have to search for updates about your restaurant; instead, you are letting them know directly what is going on.

Have a new menu? Hosting a special event? Send an email or text message to keep your customers in the loop.

Keep the success of your website going strong in 2014 by keeping on top of these three important facets of your website.

Brian Casel is the founder of Restaurant Engine, a website design solution for restaurants. Get your free Restaurant Website Checklist available now on the Restaurant Engine Blog. Email Brian directly at brian@restaurantengine.com.