Owning a restaurant is a dream many entrepreneurs hope to realize in their professional lifetime, and with half of all adults having worked in the restaurant industry at one point or another, it’s no wonder there are many individuals that want to make their mark in the dining sector. If you’re considering a restaurant venture, take these factors into consideration.
1. A Clearly Realized Concept
Unfortunately, food isn’t all that makes a restaurant, and you’ll need to craft a unique and memorable concept for your restaurant business if you hope to attract and retain customers. That means your atmosphere – including decor, lighting, and service- should all convey a clear theme. Your goal should be to garner repeat customers, and turn those customers into great word of mouth advertising. If they don’t know how to describe your restaurant, your restaurant advertising opportunity is lost.
2. A Short but Sweet Menu
Offering every food type and meal you can think of isn’t going to do your business any favors. By and large, the most successful restaurants are those that offer a succinct menu of the items they do best. The longer your menu, the more ingredients you’ll need. When restaurants are forced to source larger numbers of ingredients, quality suffers, and the overall taste of your food may suffer as a result. It’s also important to remember that with more choices offered, customers take longer to peruse your menu. Each minute they spend taking up a table without eating is a minute wasted where you could have another customer seated – leaving you losing out on more money.
3. Capital to Spare
Don’t make the mistake of dipping your toe into the restaurant sector without having more than enough capital to fund your aims. Running a restaurant is expensive, and starting this venture without capital to spare is a surefire way to fail. Most restaurants don’t actually see a profit until months or years down the line. There are a variety of ways to secure the financing needed to get a restaurant off the ground. Some choose to take out a home equity loan that uses their personal home as capital. Others prefer P2P lending from a site like LendingClub.com, but this can come with costly interest rates. Traditional bank loans can be extremely difficult to secure, especially if you’ve never run a successful business before. Still others borrow from friends and family, and the recent trend of crowd funding has become much more popular in the restaurant industry.
4. Serve Alcohol
Restaurant owners that forgo an alcohol license can find it significantly hurts business. The revenue created from alcohol sales within a restaurant generally makes up a significant portion of the establishment’s overall profits. Restaurant owners forgo this offering for various motives: securing a liquor license is too expensive, permits are hard to come by, or personal reasons.
Whatever the case, there is much to be said about investing the money into an alcohol permit. If your restaurant is in a highly populated area, you’ll likely find competition has driven up the price and decreased the availability of alcohol permits. In these cases, it’s usually a good idea to use a brokerage service that has a compilation of permits available, like the liquor licenses here.
Using a professional means avoiding any legal consequences and finding the often expensive permit you need at a fair price.
5. Highly-Trained Wait Staff
Finding stellar staff should be priority number one once you’ve got your menu in place, vendors selected, and venue prepared. Restaurant patrons expect the utmost in customer service, and it’s in your best interest to arm your staff with the training and skills they need to make a great impression each and every time someone is seated. Pay better wages to attract better wait staff, take customer feedback into consideration, and treat your employees with respect to ensure a symbiotic relationship that sees your restaurant thriving.
Running a successful restaurant business is no simple task, but there are general guidelines that can improve the chances of realizing your profitable aims.by