How to Write a Restaurant Business Plan
Restaurant Business Plan
Restaurant Business Plan is a must whether you are planning to approach investors or bank for funding or investing your own savings. Opening a restaurant without a business plan is like driving without a destination. You must know where you are heading to.
Major Aspects of a Restaurant Business Plan:
- The concept (menu, theme, service & food)
- Industry Analysis (dining out trend, consumer demand & behaviour)
- Target Market (your core customer)
- Food, Menu & Service (does it meet your core customer’s demand)
- Location (theme must match the location)
- USP & Competitive Advantage (your brand’s unique quality)
- Team (do you have a team in place)
- Marketing & Publicity (pre-opening & post-launch marketing)
- Financials (fixed expenses, breakeven etc.)
Below tips give you an idea about how you can write a Restaurant Business Plan.
It refers to the type of restaurant theme you want to start. Is it a fine dining, café, casual dining, street kitchen etc. You must have a clear understanding of the concept and theme. Concept helps you to define your market segment, decorations, marketing, menu food etc.
You must do an in-depth industry research about the current trend. For e.g., currently there is a huge demand for “vegan” and ‘healthy” restaurants, hence launching a Fish & Chips or a Curry House would be a huge risk until you are looking to tap an untapped market within those two segments.
“You open, and they will come”, it doesn’t work anymore. You must know who your core customers are. Where do they come from, how old are they, what are their job profile etc. If you know your customers, you can create menu and focus on marketing and promotions as per their preferences.
Food, Menu & Service
The concept and theme will help you to plan menu and service delivery. Excellent food and service are the most important aspects of any restaurant business however aligning the menu and service with the concept will be help your business to stand out in the competition. So, pay attention to it.
Your search for location must align with your brand’s concept and target segment. High foot fall doesn’t always mean that a business will do great. List out the potential locations and then start the search and also don’t ignore the commuting time.
USP & Competitive Advantage
You must know your competitors and how your restaurant theme stands out of them. Why would any customer walk into to your restaurant? Why would they choose you over your competitors? What is your unique selling point (USP)? Is it your service, food, theme, atmosphere, experience, untapped market etc.?
Team & Business Structure
Restaurant Business is a team business. Successful restaurant business needs a great teamwork behind it. So, appoint leader or manager for each section, starting from the kitchen (Head Chef), followed by front of house (Service Manager), and public relations (PR Manager). You don’t have to spend a lot of money hiring these people but must make each manager clear of their role.
Marketing & Publicity
How will you promote your brand to your target segment? Have a plan in place for grand opening, pre-opening promotions, website, menu design etc. If possible hire an agency who can deliver you all the designing and marketing work under one umbrella.
Get help of accountant or a business advisor. You must know your monthly fixed costs (rent, business rates, utilities, staff, supply, legal etc.). Knowing your fixed costs will help you to set your goal towards to breakeven. Putting them on a simple excel sheet can go a long way.