However, like any other business, running a restaurant is all about profit, which means your products and services have to be good enough to attract guests, your prices need to be affordable, yet high enough to cover the costs and leave room for profit and you should make sure people know about your restaurant. So, if you’re a beginner in this field, take a look at the following tips before you take the plunge.
Do your homework
If you’re thinking about opening an Italian restaurant in an area already saturated with similar establishments, it’s quite likely you’ll fail. Similarly, if you’re planning to offer a menu that people in the area are not likely to respond to, you won’t stand very good chances of making it. Finally, if your prices are too high, people will opt for other restaurants offering similar or same service for less money. These are just the most simple rules, which people sometimes forget. So, conduct some market research and see what is happening in the area you want to operate in. Consider potential competitors, target audience and other factors before deciding to open a restaurant in a particular area.
Have a business plan
You most definitely need a good business plan, which will encompass every business activity for the next three to five years. It has to include funding options and financial projections, marketing plans, procuring equipment and hiring staff, creating a menu, designing the layout of your restaurant, picking a theme, and so on. If you don’t have such a plan, you’ll be forced to improvise, which can easily lead to making costly mistakes.
Efficiency is the key
The way you streamline your business has a great impact on your overall performance. When it comes to running a restaurant, your customers expect to get their dishes fairly quickly and be able to pay using different payment methods. That’s why it’s necessary you have a point of sale (POS) system to help you manage transactions at your restaurant. Furthermore, an efficient mobile POS system will allow you to take table side orders and payments, as well as to track table statuses. Your customers will surely appreciate this feature.
Licenses and permits
There are many rules and regulations regarding opening a restaurants, which makes perfect sense. When dealing with sensitive products, such as food, you really have to be sure you know how to handle them. Though you may find some requirements too bureaucratic, you’ll just have to meet all the standards if you want to be issued all relevant licenses and permits. You need to familiarize yourself with all the local zoning laws as well, because you don’t want to break any laws, especially even before you start making income.
Make it different
There is no point in opening a restaurant in an area with other similar establishments, especially if the quality of your food is the same and there is no difference in price in your favor. You simply need to find your unique selling proposition if you want to attract enough people. So, you should offer a different menu from other restaurants in the area or make sure your service is head and shoulders above the competitors’. You can always opt for lower prices, but make sure you still make enough money to keep the business alive.
As you can see, opening a restaurant is in many ways similar to other businesses, but there are still quite a few distinctive features. You can always count on having many competitors, but that shouldn’t discourage you, provided you have planned well and are a bit creative. In that case, you’ll stand good chances of running a successful business.
About the author:
Fiona is a lifestyle blogger based in Melbourne, Australia. She’s in love with good coffee, croissants, and fashion magazines. In her spare time, she plays tennis and travels around the world. You can read more from her on her blog High Style Life.