By Dean Burgess
What are the secrets to saving money and starting your dream restaurant? If you are a fledgling in the food industry, you may be asking yourself just that — and you may be struggling to come up with an answer. Starting a restaurant can be expensive, but you can find ways to save yourself some stress, time and of course, a little bit of cash with these tips for success.
1. Be Ready to Be Your Own Boss
Do you have what it takes to be a business owner? Tenacity, adaptability and comfort with risk are just a handful of key traits you need to possess in order to successfully make it as a business owner. So, take some time to answer a few questions and find out if you are one of them. Even if you check yes to each one of these natural-born business owner qualities, it’s important to know that running a food business is totally different from other industries.
You have to know whether owning a restaurant is the right move for you. To truly succeed in the restaurant business, you have to be able to thrive on stress because your life will be full of it. In this industry, if you have the right mindset, stress can be a good thing! So, figure out what your strengths are before you even think of moving onto the next steps.
2. Write Out a Restaurant Business Plan
Before you open your restaurant doors, there are quite a few steps you need to take. Drafting a detailed and clear business plan for your restaurant is the starting point. If you’ve never written a business plan, that’s not a problem. You don’t have to splurge for pricey templates or pay someone to help. All you need to know to begin are some restaurant business plan basics, and then you can use your own ideas to fill in the rest.
A summary of your restaurant will give potential investors a good concept of the kind of business you envision building, but you will need a detailed income statement and financial plan as well. For that, it helps to know what kind of financial resources are necessary to make your dreams a reality. You need to include your startup costs in order to succeed, but you can also think of ways to save.
3. Look for Ways to Save Money From the Start
When it comes to saving money on starting your restaurant, planning is essential. From formulating your budget to covering equipment costs, thinking about your finances will give you the chance to anticipate your needs and come up with ways to cut costs and save yourself some time. One of the highest costs for restaurant owners is the location itself. If you cannot afford to purchase a space, you will need to lease one, but this may be to your advantage. So long as you are smart about negotiating a lease, you will be able to easily cover repair costs and relocate to a larger, better space as your business becomes a success.
4. Target Your Audience With Smart Marketing
Marketing can be a major cost for some small businesses, but you can save yourself some effort and money by determining who your target customers will be. For newer chefs and owners, a pop-up event can be the perfect way to drum up excitement for your future restaurant and gain some followers before you even open. Working with local business on this kind of project is also a great networking move, which is one of several no-cost methods for marketing your new business. Pairing yourself with other local business owners can give you the referrals you need to get your dream off the ground and running without running out of income.
Succeeding in the food sector of small business takes a lot of work, patience, and a drive to persevere in the face of constant stress. But if you have what it takes and the right tips, you can find a way to make your business dreams a flourishing reality. Good luck, and bon appetit!
By: Arianna Annunziato