Staring A Restaurant The Right Way
Keep costs low. When opening a restaurant, you need to be very careful about your finances. Even established restaurant operators face financial challenges, so it’s important to keep your costs low while you grow your brand and build a regular clientele. Spending too much money when you’re starting a restaurant can really hurt your chances of success.
Start small at first. Before opening a brick-and-mortar restaurant, consider starting small. A food truck, catering business or food cart will provide you with a solid foundation for starting your own restaurant. You’ll to learn about food costs, customer service, inventory management, and most importantly, build your brand and a following.
A favorable lease is important. Because you’ll need time to gain a following when opening a restaurant. You’ll likely have more outgoing costs the first few months, and you’ll need to cover them yourself. Beware of expensive leases, long leases or penalties if you decide to change locations, or move your restaurant.
Know what you’re getting into. When you choose to open a restaurant at a brick-and-mortar location it’s important to stake out the location. Are there people around or is it a ghost town? Consider stopping people passing by and ask them why they are there. This will tell you a lot about them. Find out what kind of food they like and if they are interested in your startup restaurant concept. Before you sign a lease, find out if other restaurants in the area are making money.
Understand the needs the community. Do lots of demographic research about the people in the area. If you want your new restaurant to be successful, make sure it’s a good fit. For example, if you’re near a large office complex, your startup restaurant will have a different target customer than a restaurant opening near a college.To open a successful restaurant startup, you need to be a welcome addition to the community. Get the locals to accept you and describe your business with enthusiasm!
How To Run Your New Restaurant
Those with dreams of opening a restaurant are a special breed. Diligent, organized, determined and motivated. Running a successful restaurant startup requires intense dedication and lots of planning. A great place to start is our Learning Center, a library of articles designed to help restaurant owners become more successful.
The following are key areas to master in order to achieve success:
Delivering high-quality guest experiences is what it’s all about. Creating processes and procedures and following up on them with your staff is the key to delivering a superior guest experience, every time. That means developing systems and training that includes things like cleaning regimens, managing inventory, and orders, food quality control and procedures for hiring and training new staff.
Create a culture of excellence among your staff. This means setting high but achievable goals and holding them accountable to the standards you set. Your restaurant success depends on your employees caring about the needs of your customers and being truly invested in providing the best guest experiences. Many applicants for your restaurant may be younger or inexperienced workers. This is why it’s so important to have well-developed procedures and a consistent, codified training process. For more on this, read our Learning Center articles “How to Hire Restaurant Staff”, “Reduce Restaurant Staff Turnover” and “Getting Restaurant Staff To Sell”
Know your KPIs. Tracking sales, inventory, labor costs, customer behaviors, table turn times and more help you run your business more efficiently. By tracking Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) in your restaurant you’ll be able to quantify the success of your business. A modern POS system will help you track your KPIs through analytic reports. This information allows you to reduce waste and increase profitability. For more information, read our Learning Center article “Restaurant KPIs”