Owning a restaurant seems to be a shared ambition for most people because the industry is such a lively and interactive experience. However, opening a restaurant is not unlike any other business; it requires determination, planning, and hard work. This can be scary for someone with no prior experience in the field.
Having an idea about the restaurant you wish to open is not nearly enough to start your launch plans and turn your project into a successful business. A lot goes into building your restaurant and this article will navigate you through the best thought process to follow on how to open a successful restaurant in order to develop your restaurant type and brand.
Establish a Concept
First and foremost, your restaurant needs an identity, meaning that as a restaurant owner, you are required to define your business type, the menu, the services you want to focus on, and your target audience.
For instance, if your goal is to provide a fast service with focus on take-outs and delivery, then a fast food restaurant would achieve those goals. Whereas if you want to include a unique dine-in experience with excellent on-site customer service, casual dining is the best way to go. Explore your options further by reading the in-depth guide to all restaurant types and create the right concept for you.
Find the Right Location
Your concept cannot be determined without factoring in the location of your restaurant. In fact, agreeing on the location could completely change the initial concept you had.
For example, A fine-dining establishment does not bode well in an area full of university students or employees. Their schedule does not allow for a dine-in experience with expensive foods.
You must also be vigilant of your competitors. Make sure to survey the types of restaurants in the region and anticipate their effect on your business. Do they serve the kinds of food you had in mind? Do they lack the services that you wish to include?
This process should be repeated in several regions in order to make a well-formed decision on the concept and location of your restaurant.
A few points to consider for the location survey:
- The region’s demography;
- The area’s infrastructure costs & fees;
- The surrounding competitors;
- Traffic, security, and parking spaces.
Expand Your Knowledge
It is a well known saying that an entrepreneur wears many hats. As a restaurant owner, it is no different for you. A restaurant is your company and in it, there will be many departments with different responsibilities. Therefore, you should acquire general knowledge in each department.
You don’t have to spend years learning hospitality, but in order to ensure a bright future for your restaurant, researching and asking experienced owners about the inner operations of the restaurants can broaden your vision and improve your business model. Find out what makes for an unforgettable customer experience, look for the problems others overlooked and fill those gaps before launching, study customers’ expectations when walking into a new restaurant, etc.
You can start by checking out Foodics Resources, your source for all publications F&B and restaurant related.
Create a Business Plan & Look for Capital
Once the above steps are finalized and have now established the type of restaurant to launch, you must create a detailed business plan that explains your brand and highlights the strategies followed to make profit:
- Restaurant Overview & Description:
Includes details about your concept, vision & mission, location.
- SWOT Analysis:
Your restaurant’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.
- Competition Analysis.
- Pricing Details.
- Loyalty Strategy.
You’ll also need Capital funding, an investment of money to set up your restaurant. The money can be used for purchasing or renting as well as furnishing and installing restaurant equipment.