Starting a restaurant business is no easy feat, but usually, the experience is worthwhile and can be profitable. So, you have this brilliant idea for your own restaurant business but you have no previous experience. Where do you even begin? Thankfully, today, you have a myriad of resources at your fingertips. With literally a few clicks, you can find all sorts of information to research about launching your first very own restaurant.
Building your restaurant, as with any other business, is like building an ecosystem. It requires many factors to make it run in symbiosis. It is not just about the food, but also about the atmosphere, location, customer service, marketing, and management. Everything single detail, down to finding the right restaurant POS systems will ensure that your business functions like a well-oiled machine.
Starting a business with no experience
Before you start your business, here are some things to consider:
Set clear goals
Starting a restaurant has its risk and challenges. Having a passion for food or business is usually a good driving force that will keep you motivated through all the complex decisions that you will encounter along the way.
Then, you must also have a clear plan of action so that you are prepared. Be clear and set clear goals to keep you working hard to overcome difficulties.
Think of a theme or concept for your restaurant
There are many different types of restaurants nowadays. What would your restaurant be like? Maybe you want to serve Japanese food? Korean food? Mexican? Your restaurants can then also be divided into sit down restaurants, fast food restaurants, and many more. Knowing your prospective customers’ demographics is also essential in determining the concept.
Once you have a theme or concept in mind, draft a menu that you will be confident in serving. Your menu should also have the estimated prices of each item after you’ve done some market research. If you have competitors in the area, ensure that your prices are equally as competitive to attract customers.
Evaluate your experience and skillset to start a restaurant business
What are your capabilities? Although you might not have much experience in the field, you might possess other successful qualities from your own experiences that can help you get ahead.
The qualities you will need to develop (or at least be familiar with) include accounting and finance, management skills, sales and marketing, HR, customer service, finding reliable vendors and suppliers, and inventory management.
Where is your restaurant going to be located?
The location of your restaurant is vital. It’s not just about the location but the demographic of your particular area. Surveying should be conducted in the area that you are considering. Then, you must also consider accessibility, competition, rent and utility fees, local regulations, parking, and security.
All these factors must be considered beforehand to ensure none of them will affect your restaurant down the line.
Plan out a business plan with working capital of at least 3 to 5 months.
There are many restaurants out there but it does not mean that your new venture cannot be successful. New restaurants who want to succeed must differentiate themselves from other competitors. Therefore, having a business plan is crucial and it should cover all the main aspects of your restaurant such as the concept, your vision, and mission statement, etc.
Conducting a SWOT analysis is also vital in helping you to identify the Strength, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. In this business plan, you should also conduct a competitive analysis, plan out pricing and costing, and also have an action plan for sales and marketing.
Gather knowledge and experience
There are many ways you can gather some knowledge and slowly build your experience in the field. The internet, for one, is a great source of information. You can even get testimonials and tutorial videos from successful restaurant owners.
Secondly, if you personally know someone with experience in the field, seek out for their mentorship or at least meet them to gather more information.
Lastly, the best way to gain the first-hand experience is to get real experience and get a part-time job working at a café or restaurant. Doing this will give you a different point of view of how a restaurant ecosystem works. While on the job, you can also have an idea of which suppliers to work with.
Starting a restaurant business, or any business with no experience can be extremely daunting. However, we should be ever thankful that we live in the era of the internet that enables us to get as much information as possible before we embark on any new project. Even without the internet, there are plenty of other resources for you to gather more information. The most effective method would be to take a part-time job as a waiter to get the first-hand experience of the whole business as a whole.
Start Restaurant Business Final Words
Once you have all the right information, draw out a business plan so that you can have a bird’s eye view of your entire project, and start planning. By following all the tips above, you will have your new venture up and running in no time!