04 March 2011
Recently there has been a lot of noise about Livebookings entering the market as a major competitor to OpenTable. And they’re right. With over 8,000 restaurants already using its online reservation software, Livebookings is the only other serious player in the industry.
Livebookings has a big advantage over its competitors for several reasons, but one of the most compelling is that Livebookings’ web-based service (no proprietary hardware) actually helps restaurateurs cost-effectively build their own brand and guest database online, instead of promoting a third party.
In an effort to build up a consumer brand, OpenTable has managed to alienate many of its once loyal restaurant customers. CNBC recently reported on a survey that showed a majority of independent restaurants nationwide view the cost of their ERB and booking fees as overly expensive and would consider switching for a less expensive option. In a San Francisco Chronicle op-ed, restaurateurs Chris Cosentino and Mark Pastore ask the question: "Is OpenTable worth it?" and answer with a resounding no.
Simply stated, restaurants are crying out for competition in the online reservation space.
Livebookings, has built quite a presence in the US in a very short time, partnering with some of the biggest names in the industry, such as Steve Hanson’s B.R. Guest Restaurant Group, Jean Georges’ Spice Market, Håkan Swahn's, Aquavit, Anthony Bourdain’s Les Halles, Marcus Samuelsson's Red Rooster, and major national casual chains such as Outback Steakhouse’s Bonefish Grill.
Having the option to purchase cost-effective, non-competitive services from suppliers is an obvious requirement for any business, and restaurants are no different. Here at Livebookings, we believe we offer something unique to the restaurant community -- helping them build their brand and business online.