If you have always dreamt of opening a small restaurant or cafe, then what has stopped you previously? Taking your passion for good food, cooking, and entertaining and then creating a restaurant or cafe could be a fantastic opportunity for you. Knowing where to start can put you off the process, and it can leave you feeling overwhelmed. So, to squash these doubts and fears, let’s talk about what you need to do (and focus on).
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Start Small but Think Big
Even though you are wanting to start a small restaurant or cafe (most likely one that has under 20 tables/covers), it doesn’t mean that you should just think small. If you think too small, you may find that your idea never gets out of the planning stage. Thinking about how this can positively impact you and thinking about how you can bring great food to the lives of others is crucial. Thinking big doesn’t mean upscaling; it may involve thinking about what you can do to make your restaurant or cafe stand out.
Have a Business Plan
No matter how small the venture you have in mind is, you will always find that a business plan is essential. Without a business plan, your restaurant or cafe will have no direction. It may not have a purpose, and you will certainly not know who its competition is or where they are based. When you are creating a business plan, you will be able to work out the financials relating to your project. For example, how much do you need to invest to get your cafe or restaurant off the ground? What are the running costs of your venture, and what are those one-off costs you will have to cover?
Be Professional at All Times
Even a small venue needs to maintain high professional standards at all times. If you are not professional, how can you build trust among customers and suppliers? When it comes to being professional at all times, you need to look at the apparel everyone on-site uses. This may include designer cook shirts with appropriate branding, or it may include chef hats and aprons. When you (and everyone involved) are professional in front of customers and service providers, it sets you off in good stead.
Have a Niche and USP
Running any size restaurant or cafe is always going to be competitive. To ensure that you can handle this competition, you are going to need to have a niche and a USP. Something that is going to help you stand out from the crowds and, of course, something that is going to help you get noticed. When you are thinking about what niche or USP to offer, it is important to focus on your customer profile. Knowing what your customer looks like, and knowing what they need and want, is the key to success. When you are aware of who your customers are, you can then start establishing just what extra value you can add to their experience or visit.