Online restaurant booking service

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Back in 2010 there was only one online restaurant booking service in the UK. Though it listed a large selection of restaurants, it had two huge drawbacks – annoyingly archaic search functionality and no real-time table availability feature.

The service’s search functionality was very primitive and not user friendly. There were two ways to find a restaurant: by following a basic search tree (country/city/district) or by typing the exact name of the venue. It was also impossible to book a table in real time. You had to request a booking and wait to hear from the restaurant. The site did not offer available dates and times. Nor did it suggest another time or venue if the restaurant could not take your booking. As there were no alternative services, users had to accept its flaws and hope something better would come along. The (In)Touch team saw an opportunity to create a more convenient, customer-centric, booking service – a system tailored to the user’s needs. We advised the company on possible UX/UI approaches. We then discussed the options with a focus group and set about developing the product. It would be a unique user-friendly online booking service for restaurants throughout the UK.


Being the ultimate ‘dine advisor’, Eat(In)Touch enabled users to easily find the best local restaurants and book a table instantly.

After careful analysis of the competition, we set out to create an interface that could be easily navigated by the user and would provide a comprehensive overview of the UK restaurant scene. First, we perfected the search functionality and created a user-friendly system that allowed visitors to narrow down their restaurant search in as few steps as possible. An interactive map used unique localising functionality to show an area within the users’ chosen number of minutes’ journey – by car or on foot. A range of filters enabled customers to find the perfect restaurant for any given occasion. ‘My Criteria’ allowed them to set individual requirements for Food Quality, Wine & Cocktail Range, Service Level, Interior & Decor, Scenery and Price Range. Registered customers could make lists of their favourite restaurants, view their booking history, write reviews and rate restaurants. What’s more, through the integration of the APIs of popular restaurant guides, such as Zagat and Michelin, we could provide a lowdown on the venue, so users didn’t have to search for information on other sites.
Real-time table availability and booking was another innovation. The Eat(In)Touch booking system offered exclusive functionality. When customers chose a specific date and time, they could only view restaurants with available tables. While booking, they could see the available time slots, as well as recommendations of restaurants with similar cuisine in the area. This avoided disappointment and time wasting. Once a booking was made, confirmation was emailed to the customer. If their preferred time was not available, the user could ask to be notified if the time slot became free. Eat(In)Touch was an overnight success. Thanks to its improved search functionality and exclusive real-time booking system, it was now possible to book restaurants four times faster than before. In the first three months, Eat(In)Touch handled more than 15% of all online restaurant bookings in the UK. Unfortunately, due to changes in the business environment, the (In)Touch team was forced to re-evaluate the business model and concluded that it was no longer viable to continue.


It was important that the branding communicated the core concept of Eat(In)Touch. With that in mind, we came up with an easily recognisable logo, which illustrated the user-friendly nature of the system.


While the website was in development, an animated screensaver gave visitors an idea of what was to come.


We designed more than 400 original pages over the course of the project.


An intuitive rating system consisted of a number of icons, allowing users to quickly assess different restaurant features.


Eat(In)Touch was always available on the move with its iOS and Android apps.


After a simple registration process you immediately had access to over 19 000 UK restaurants and coffee houses.


It was a delight to search for venues via Eat(In)Touch. In just a few clicks, a range of filters enabled customers to find the perfect restaurant for any given occasion.


For the project launch, we developed an easy-going and fun advertising campaign. It managed to convey to the user the essence of the service without an abundance of useless information.

Fast and intuitive restaurant search

Easy to customise

Real-time table availability and instant booking

Special features and customer reviews

Technical specs


  • HTML5
  • CSS3
  • Bootstrap
  • Ajax
  • jQuery
  • Leaflet


  • Nginx
  • Apache
  • Java
  • TomCat
  • Maven
  • MySQL
  • MongoDb
  • ElasticSearch
  • ActiveMQ
  • Sendmail
  • HaProxy


  • ObjectiveC
  • Open Street Maps
  • Google Analytics
  • Google Location Services
  • Flurry
  • Facebook SDK
  • HockeyApp


  • Android Framework
  • Open Street Maps
  • Google Analytics
  • Google Location Services
  • Retrofit2
  • RxJava
  • RxAndroid
  • Zxing
  • Flurry
  • Pury
  • Facebook SDK
  • Realm
  • HockeyApp
  • Robospice
  • Gson
  • OkHttp
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