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How to Write a Restaurant Business Plan
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When starting a business—no matter what type of business that may be—a business plan is essential to map out your intentions and direction. That’s the same for a restaurant business plan, which will help you figure out where you fit in the landscape, how you’re going to differ from other establishments around you, how you’ll market your business, and even what you’re going to serve. A business plan for your restaurant can also help you later if you choose to apply for a business loan .
While opening a restaurant isn’t as risky as you’ve likely heard, you still want to ensure that you’re putting thought and research into your business venture to set it up for success. And that’s where a restaurant business plan comes in.
We’ll go through how to create a business plan for a restaurant and a few reasons why it’s so important. After you review the categories and the restaurant business plan examples, you can use the categories to make a restaurant business plan template and start your journey.
Why you shouldn’t skip a restaurant business plan
First-time restaurateurs and industry veterans alike all need to create a business plan when opening a new restaurant . That’s because, even if you deeply understand your business and its nuances (say, seasonal menu planning or how to order correct quantities), a restaurant is more than its operations. There’s marketing, financing, the competitive landscape, and more—and each of these things is unique to each door you open.
That’s why it’s so crucial to understand how to create a business plan for a restaurant. All of these things and more will be addressed in the document—which should run about 20 or 30 pages—so you’ll not only have a go-to-market strategy, but you’ll also likely figure out some things about your business that you haven’t even thought of yet.
Additionally, if you’re planning to apply for business funding down the line, some loans—including the highly desirable SBA loan —actually require you to submit your business plan to gain approval. In other words: Don’t skip this step!
How to write a restaurant business plan: Step by step
There’s no absolute format for a restaurant business plan that you can’t stray from—some of these sections might be more important than others, for example, or you might find that there’s a logical order that makes more sense than the one in the restaurant business plan example below. However, this business plan outline will serve as a good foundation, and you can use it as a restaurant business plan template for when you write your own.
Your executive summary is one to two pages that kick off your business plan and explain your vision. Even though this might seem like an introduction that no one will read, that isn’t the case. In fact, some investors only ask for the executive summary. So, you’ll want to spend a lot of time perfecting it.
Your restaurant business plan executive summary should include information on:
Mission statement: Your goals and objectives
General company information: Include your founding date, team roles (i.e. executive chef, sous chefs, sommeliers), and locations
Category and offerings: What category your restaurant fits into, what you’re planning to serve (i.e. farm-to-table or Korean), and why
Context for success: Any past success you’ve had, or any current financial data that’ll support that you are on the path to success
Financial requests: If you’re searching for investment or financing, include your plans and goals here and any financing you’ve raised or borrowed thus far
Future plans: Your vision for where you’re going in the next year, three years, and five years
When you’re done with your executive summary, you should feel like you’ve provided a bird’s eye view of your entire business plan. In fact, even though this section is first, you will likely write it last so you can take the highlights from each of the subsequent sections.
And once you’re done, read it on its own: Does it give a comprehensive, high-level overview of your restaurant, its current state, and your vision for the future? Remember, this may be the only part of your business plan potential investors or partners will read, so it should be able to stand on its own and be interesting enough to make them want to read the rest of your plan.
This is where you’ll dive into the specifics of your company, detailing the kind of restaurant you’re looking to create, who’s helping you do it, and how you’re prepared to accomplish it.
Your restaurant business plan company overview should include:
Purpose: The type of restaurant you’re opening (fine dining, fast-casual, pop-up, etc.), type of food you’re serving, goals you have, and the niche you hope to fill in the market
Area: Information on the area in which you’re opening
Customers: Whom you’re hoping to target, their demographic information
Legal structure: Your business entity (i.e. LLC, LLP, etc.) and how many owners you have
Similar to your executive summary, you won’t be going into major detail here as the sections below will get into the nitty-gritty. You’ll want to look at this as an extended tear sheet that gives someone a good grip on your restaurant or concept, where it fits into the market, and why you’re starting it.
Team and management
Barely anything is as important for a restaurant as the team that runs it. You’ll want to create a section dedicated to the members of your staff—even the ones that aren’t yet hired. This will provide a sense of who is taking care of what, and how you need to structure and build out the team to get your restaurant operating at full steam.
Your restaurant business plan team and management section should have:
Management overview: Who is running the restaurant, what their experience and qualifications are, and what duties they’ll be responsible for
Staff: Other employees you’ve brought on and their bios, as well as other spots you anticipate needing to hire for
Ownership percentage: Which individuals own what percentage of the restaurant, or if you are an employee-owned establishment
Be sure to update this section with more information as your business changes and you continue to share this business plan—especially because who is on your team will change both your business and the way people look at it.
You’ll also want to include a sample menu in your restaurant business plan so readers have a sense of what they can expect from your operations, as well as what your diners can expect from you when they sit down. This will also force you to consider exactly what you want to serve your diners and how your menu will stand out from similar restaurants in the area. Although a sample menu is in some ways self-explanatory, consider the following:
Service : If your brunch is as important as your dinner, provide both menus; you also might want to consider including both a-la-carte and prix fixe menus if you plan to offer them.
Beverage/wine service: If you’ll have an emphasis on specialty beverages or wine, a separate drinks list could be important.
Seasonality: If you’re a highly seasonal restaurant, you might want to consider providing menus for multiple seasons to demonstrate how your dishes (and subsequent purchasing) will change.
This is where you’ll begin to dive deeper. Although you’ve likely mentioned your market and the whitespace you hope to address, the market analysis section will enable you to prove your hypotheses.
Your restaurant business plan market analysis should include:
Industry information: Include a description of the restaurant industry, its size, growth trends, and other trends regarding things such as tastes, trends, demographics, structures, etc.
Target market: Zoom in on the area and neighborhood in which you’re opening your restaurant as well as the type of cuisine you’re serving.
Target market characteristics: Describe your customers and their needs, how/if their needs are currently being served, other important pieces about your specific location and customers.
Target market size and growth: Include a data-driven section on the size of your market, trends in its growth, how your target market fits into the industry as a whole, projected growth of your market, etc.
Market share potential: Share how much potential there is in the market, how much your presence will change the market, and how much your specific restaurant or restaurant locations can own of the open market; also touch on any barriers to growth or entry you might see.
Market pricing: Explain how you’ll be pricing your menu and where you’ll fall relative to your competitors or other restaurants in the market.
Competitive research: Include research on your closest competitors, how they are both succeeding and failing, how customers view them, etc.
If this section seems like it might be long, it should—it’s going to outline one of the most important parts of your strategy, and should feel comprehensive. Lack of demand is the number one reason why new businesses fail, so the goal of this section should be to prove that there is demand for your restaurant and show how you’ll capitalize on it.
Additionally, if market research isn’t your forte, don’t be shy to reach out to market research experts to help you compile the data, or at least read deeply on how to conduct effective research.
Marketing and sales
Your marketing and sales section should feel like a logical extension of your market analysis section, since all of the decisions you’ll make in this section should follow the data of the prior section.
The marketing and sales sections of your restaurant business plan should include:
Positioning: How you’ll describe your restaurant to potential customers, the brand identity and visuals you’ll use to do it, and how you’ll stand out in the market based on the brand you’re building
Promotion: The tools, tactics, and platforms you’ll use to market your business
Sales: How you’ll convert on certain items, and who/how you will facilitate any additional revenue streams (i.e. catering)
It’s likely that you’ll only have concepts for some of these elements, especially if you’re not yet open. Still, get to paper all of the ideas you have, and you can (and should) always update them later as your restaurant business becomes more fully formed.
The business operations section should get to the heart of how you plan to run your business. It will highlight both internal factors as well as external forces that will dictate how you run the ship.
The business operations section should include:
Management team: Your management structure and hierarchy, and who is responsible for what
Hours: Your hours and days of operation
Location: What’s special about your location that will get people through the door
Relationships: Any advantageous relationships you have with fellow restaurateurs, places for sourcing and buying, business organizations, or consultants on your team
Add here anything you think could be helpful for illustrating how you’re going to do business and what will affect it.
Here, you’ll detail the current state of your business finances and project where you hope to be in a year, three years, and five years. You’ll want to detail what you’ve spent, what you will spend, where you’ll get the money, costs you might incur, and returns you’ll hope to see—including when you can expect to break even and turn a profit.
Financial statements: If you’ve been in business for any amount of time, include existing financial statements (i.e. profit and loss, balance sheet, cash flow, etc.)
Budget: Your current budget or a general startup budget
Projections: Include revenue, cash flow, projected profit and loss, and other costs
Debt: Include liabilities if the business has any outstanding debt or loans
Funding request: If you’re requesting a loan or an investment, lay out how much capital you’re looking for, your company’s valuation (if applicable), and the purpose of the funding
Above all, as you’re putting your financials together, be realistic—even conservative. You want to give any potential investors a realistic picture of your business.
Feel like there are other important components but they don't quite fit in any of the other categories (or make them run too long)? That’s what the restaurant business plan appendix section is for. And although in, say, a book, an appendix can feel like an afterthought, don’t ignore it—this is another opportunity for you to include crucial information that can give anyone reading your plan some context. You may include additional data, graphs, marketing collateral (like logo mockups), and more.
The bottom line
Whether you’re writing a restaurant business plan for investors, lenders, or simply for yourself and your team, the most important thing to do is make sure your document is comprehensive. A good business plan for a restaurant will take time—and maybe a little sweat—to complete fully and correctly.
One other crucial thing to remember: a business plan is not a document set in stone. You should often look to it to make sure you’re keeping your vision and mission on track, but you should also feel prepared to update its components as you learn more about your business and individual restaurant.
This article originally appeared on JustBusiness, a subsidiary of NerdWallet.
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How to write a restaurant business plan.
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A small restaurant business plan is the roadmap you use to open a successful spot. As a first step to creating yours, ask your friends and colleagues to share restaurant business plan examples. Their restaurant business plan samples can inspire yours.
Once you’ve studied those examples, it’s time to start writing your own. No matter how much thought you’ve put into your concept or how many trusted colleagues have assured you of its greatness, you must write a restaurant business plan. It will prove the viability of your concept to potential investors and provide them with a clear and engaging answer to the question: “Why does the world need this restaurant?”
“The point of a business plan is to show that you’ve done your homework,” says Charles Bililies, owner of Souvla , a fine casual Greek restaurant in San Francisco that has received national acclaim since opening in the spring of 2014.
“You have to show any potential investor that you have an actual plan, you know what you’re talking about, it looks professional, and you’re not just screwing around.”
Quick links Branded cover Table of contents Concept Sample menu Service Management team Design Target market Location Market overview Marketing and publicity Specialists and consultants Business structure Financials
1. Branded cover
Include your logo (even if it’s not finalized), the date, and your name.
2. Table of contents
A table of contents in a restaurant business plan provides an organized overview of the document’s structure and content. It typically appears at the beginning of the plan and lists the major sections and subsections with their corresponding page numbers.
The table of contents is important for several reasons. Firstly, it allows readers to quickly navigate through the plan, enabling easy access to specific sections of interest. Secondly, it helps in presenting a professional and well-structured document, showing that you have carefully organized your thoughts and ideas. It also improves readability and comprehension, as readers can easily locate and refer back to relevant information
A restaurant owner contemplates the design of a new space as part of their business plan. | Credit: Getty Images
3. Restaurant concept
Describe your restaurant concept and get the reader excited about your idea. Specify whether the restaurant will be fine dining or more casual. Include an executive summary and go into detail about the food you’ll be serving, inspiration behind your concept, and an overview of service style.
Define clearly what will be unique about your restaurant and include your mission statement. This section should include a market analysis that shows how your restaurant will be similar and different from competing restaurants.
4. Sample menu
The menu is the most important touchpoint of any restaurant’s brand, so this should be more than just a simple list of items. Incorporate your logo and mock up a formatted menu design (tap a designer for help if needed).
Your sample menu should also include prices that are based on a detailed cost analysis. This will:
- Give investors a clear understanding of your targeted price point
- Provide the info needed to estimate check averages
- Show the numbers used create financial projections for starting costs
- Show investors that you’ve done the homework
- Prove you can stay within a budget
This section is most relevant for:
- Fine-dining concepts
- Concepts that have a unique service style
- Owners who have particularly strong feelings about what role service will play in their restaurant.
It can be a powerful way of conveying your approach to hospitality to investors by explaining the details of the guest’s service experience.
Will your restaurant have counter service and restaurant hostess software designed to get guests on their way as quickly as possible, or will it look more like a theater, with captains putting plates in front of guests simultaneously?
If an extensive wine program is an integral part of what you’re doing, will you have a sommelier? If you don’t feel that service is a noteworthy component of your operation, address it briefly in the concept section.
Two restaurant workers review finances for a new restaurant as part of their business plan. | Credit: Getty Images
6. Management team
Write a brief overview of yourself and the team you have established so far. You want to show that your experience has provided you with the necessary skills to run a successful restaurant and act as a restaurant business owner.
Ideally, once you have described the strong suit of every member of your team, you’ll be presenting a full pitch deck. Most independent restaurant investors are in this for more than just money, so giving some indication of what you value and who you are outside of work may also be helpful.
Incorporate some visuals. Create a mood board that shows images related to the design and feeling of your restaurant.
Whether you’re planning to cook in a wood-burning oven or are designing an eclectic front-of-house, be sure to include those ideas. Photos of materials and snippets of other restaurants that you love that are similar to the brand you’re building are also helpful.
8. Target market
Who is going to eat at your restaurant? What do they do for a living, how old are they, and what’s their average income? Once you’ve described them in detail, reiterate why your specific concept will appeal to them.
Two restaurant workers discuss a business plan. | Credit: Getty Images
There should be a natural and very clear connection between the information you present in the “Target Market” section and this one. You probably won’t have a specific site identified at this point in the process, but you should talk about viable neighborhoods.
Don’t assume that potential investors will be familiar with the areas you’re discussing and who works or lives there—make the connections clear. You want readers to be confident that your restaurant’s “ideal” diner intersects with the neighborhood(s) you’re proposing as often as possible.
If you don’t have a site , this is a good place to discuss what you’re looking for in terms of square footage, foot traffic, parking, freeway accessibility, outdoor seating , and other important details.
10. Market overview
Address the micro and macro market conditions in your area and how they relate to licenses and permits. At a macro level, what are the local and regional economic conditions?
If restaurants are doing poorly, explain why yours won’t; if restaurants are doing well, explain how you’ll be able to compete in an already booming restaurant climate. At a micro level, discuss who your direct competitors are. Talk about what types of restaurants share your target market and how you’ll differentiate yourself.
11. Marketing and publicity
The restaurant landscape is only getting more competitive. Discuss your pre- and post-opening marketing plans to show investors how you plan to gain traction leading up to opening day, as well as how you’ll keep the momentum going.
If you’re going to retain a PR/marketing company, introduce them and explain why you’ve chosen them over other companies (including some of their best-known clients helps). If not, convey that you have a solid plan in place to generate attention on your own through social media, your website , and media connections.
Using technology, like these two restaurant workers, can streamline discussions about a business plan. | Credit: Getty Images
12. Specialists and consultants
List any outside contractors you plan to retain, such as:
- General contractor
- PR and marketing
Briefly explain the services they’ll be providing for you, why you chose them, and any notable accomplishments.
13. Business structure
This section should be short and sweet. What type of business structure have you set up and why did you make that specific decision? You will need to work with an attorney to help you determine what business structure is best for you.
“Step one: write a business plan. Step two: hire a good attorney. In addition to helping me build a smart, sustainable business structure, my attorney was also a great resource for reviewing my business plan because she’s read thousands of them. She was a very helpful, experienced outside perspective for more than just legal matters,” says Charles Bililies.
14. Financial projections
Let your accountant guide you through this portion of your business plan. It is crucial that whoever you hire to help you with your finances has a wealth of restaurant experience (not just one or two places). They should be familiar with the financial specifics of starting a restaurant and know what questions to ask you.
Before creating realistic financial projections, your accountant will want to know:
- How many seats the restaurant will have
- What your average check will be
- How many covers per day you plan to do
Being conservative in these estimations is key. These three data points will be used as the basis for figuring out whether your concept is financially feasible.
Lou Guerrero, Principal at Kross, Baumgarten, Kniss & Guerrero, emphasizes, “You’ll get a lot of accountants that tell you that they’ve done a couple of restaurants, but you have to choose someone that has a deep expertise in what you’re doing. There’s nothing to gain from going with someone that doesn’t have a very restaurant-centric practice.”
A well-vetted accountant with restaurant experience will know exactly what you’ll need to have prepared to show investors.
The key projections you can expect to work on are:
- Pro forma profit and loss statement for the first three to five years of operation
- Break even analysis
- Capital requirements budget
Writing a comprehensive restaurant business plan is a crucial step towards opening a successful establishment. By seeking inspiration from examples, demonstrating your expertise, and addressing all the essential components, you can prove the viability of your concept to potential investors.
Remember, a well-prepared business plan demonstrates professionalism and a clear understanding of your goals, increasing your chances of achieving long-term success in the competitive restaurant industry.
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Restaurant Business Plan Template
Restaurant business plan.
You’ve come to the right place to create your restaurant business plan.
We have helped over 100,000 entrepreneurs and business owners with how to write a restaurant business plan to help them start or grow their restaurants.
Below is a restaurant business plan template to help you create each section of your business plan.
Restaurant Business Plan Example
Executive summary, business overview.
Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse is a new restaurant and steakhouse located in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The menu of Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse will include bistro-type dishes that are authentically created and crafted by acclaimed Chef Peter Logan. It will be located in the trendy part of town, known as the Plaza District. The restaurant will be surrounded by classy art galleries, live theater, high-end restaurants and bars, and expensive shopping.
Owned by emerging restaurant operators Chef Peter Logan and Anastasia Gillette, Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse’s mission is to become Oklahoma City’s best, new restaurant for patrons to celebrate their next big event, have a nice date night, or gather with friends or family for a fun evening while dining over finely crafted entrees, desserts, and cocktails.
The following are the menu items to be offered by Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse:
- Soups & Salads
- Gourmet sides
- Wine, Beer & Spirits
Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse will target adult men and women between the ages of 21 – 65 with disposable income in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Within this demographic are millennials, young professionals, newlyweds, young families, more established families, and retirees. Because of the pricing structure of the menu, the patrons will likely be upper middle class to the wealthy population of Oklahoma City.
Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse is owned and operated by fellow Oklahoma City natives and culinary enthusiasts, Chef Peter Logan and Anastasia Gillette. Both come with a unique skill set and complement each other perfectly. They formerly worked together at another OKC fine dining establishment and made a great team for serving guests delectable food and wine while ensuring the highest level of customer service.
Chef Peter will manage the kitchen operations of Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse, while Anastasia will oversee front of the house operations, maintain and ensure customer service, and manage all reservations.
Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse is seeking $300,000 in debt financing to open its start-up restaurant. The funding will be dedicated for the build-out and design of the restaurant, kitchen, bar and lounge, as well as cooking supplies and equipment, working capital, three months worth of payroll expenses and opening inventory. The breakout of the funding is below:
- Restaurant Build-Out and Design – $100,000
- Kitchen supplies and equipment – $100,000
- Opening inventory – $25,000
- Working capital (to include 3 months of overhead expenses) – $25,000
- Marketing (advertising agency) – $25,000
- Accounting firm (3 months worth and establishment/permitting of business) – $25,000
Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse is a new restaurant and steakhouse located in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse will serve a wide variety of dishes and beverages and will cater to the upper middle class to wealthier population of Oklahoma City. The menu of Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse will include bistro-type dishes that are authentically created and crafted by acclaimed Chef Peter Logan. It will be located in the trendy part of town, known as the Plaza District. The Plaza District is one of Oklahoma’s trendy neighborhoods and is considered the “it” area for newlyweds, millennials, professionals, and young singles. The restaurant will be surrounded by classy art galleries, live theater, high-end restaurants and bars, and expensive shopping.
Owned by emerging restaurant operators Chef Peter Logan and Anastasia Gillette, the restaurant’s mission statement is to become the best new steak restaurant in OKC. The following are the types of menu items Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse will serve- shareables, steaks, soups, gourmet sides and salads.
Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse History
Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse is owned by two Oklahoma City natives, Chef Peter Logan and Anastasia Gillette. They have both worked around the country in fine dining establishments and have a combined twenty years in the restaurant industry. Upon working alongside each other at another fine dining establishment in Oklahoma City, the two of them became good friends and decided to venture into owning their own restaurant.
Chef Peter is the kitchen guru and critically acclaimed chef, while Anastasia manages the front of the house and is a certified Sommelier. Together, with both of their expertise and knowledge, Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse is destined to become Oklahoma City’s next big restaurant.
The Restaurant industry is expected to grow to over $220 billion in the next five years.
Consumer spending is projected to grow. The Consumer Confidence Index, a leading indicator of spending patterns, is expected to also grow strongly, which will boost restaurant industry growth over the next five years. The growth in consumer confidence also suggests that more consumers may opt to segment their disposable income to eating outside the home.
Additionally, an increase in the number of households earning more than $100,000 annually further contributes to the industry growth, supporting industry operators that offer more niche, higher-end products. This group is expected to continue to grow in size over the next five years.
The urban population represents a large market for the industry. Specifically, time-strapped individuals living in urban areas will likely frequent industry establishments to save time on cooking. The urban population is expected to increase, representing a potential opportunity for the industry.
Demographic profile of target market, customer segmentation.
Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse will primarily target the following customer profile:
- Upper middle class to wealthier population
- Young professionals
- Households with an average income of at least $75k
- Foodies and culture enthusiasts
Direct and indirect competitors.
Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse will be competing with other restaurants in Oklahoma City. A profile of each competitor is below. The Press Located in the trendy area known as the Plaza District, The Press has reimagined our favorite foods of the surrounding regions through the lens of home.
The menu consists of appetizers, soups, burgers and sandwiches, bowls, main dishes, sides, desserts, and a large selection of alcoholic beverages. The Press serves craft beer, domestic beer, wine spritzers, house cocktails, wine, and mimosas. They also offer brunch. The menu of The Press is affordable with the most expensive dish being $16. The wine menu is also not pretentious as the wine is sold either by the glass or bottle, with the most expensive bottle being $52 for the Gruet Sparkling Brut Rose. Oak & Ore Oak & Ore is a craft beer and restaurant in OKC’s Plaza District. They have a 36-tap beer selection and offer vegetarian, vegan, and gluten free dining options. Oak & Ore offers a rotating, 36-tap selection of their favorite brews from Oklahoma and around the world. Each beer is thoughtfully paired with a craft beer-inspired dining experience.
The food menu of Oak & Ore offers starters, salads, wings, fried chicken, sandwiches, tacos, banh mi, and sides. They also have a selection of kids dishes so the whole family can enjoy comfort food while sampling one of their delectable beers.
The Mule OKC The Mule is a casual, hip restaurant offering a large beer and cocktail menu plus sandwiches and more. Located in the constantly growing and buzzing hub that is the Plaza District, The Mule takes the timeless favorite and contorts it into a whole menu of wild offerings.
There is also a fantastic assortment of soups offered and The Mule shakes up a seasonal list of cocktails designed by their bar staff. During the winter months, patrons can stave off the cold with their versions of hot toddies and buttered rum. For the beer drinkers, they always have a reliable line-up of fresh cold brews on draft, as well as a wide selection of can.
Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse offers several advantages over its competition. Those advantages are:
- Gourmet dishes elegantly prepared to the finest standard.
- Selection of steaks sourced from local Oklahoma farms.
- An exclusive and unique wine menu that includes a wine selection of all price points.
- Highly sought after location: Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse will be located in the trendy and attractive neighborhood known as The Plaza District.
- Trendy, welcoming, and energetic ambiance that will be perfect for a night out or a celebration.
The marketing strategy for Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse is as follows: Location Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse’s location is a promotions strategy in itself. The Plaza District is a destination spot for locals, tourists, and anyone looking for the trendiest food fare in Oklahoma City. The Plaza District is home to OKC’s most popular bars and restaurants, art galleries, theaters, and boutique shopping. The millennials, young professionals, and foodies will frequent Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse for the location itself.
Social Media Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse will use social media to cater to the millennials and Oklahoma City residents. Chef Peter and Anastasia plan to hire an advertising agency to take professional photographs of the menu items and location to create appealing posts to reach a greater audience. The posts will include pictures of the menu items, as well as upcoming featured options. SEO Website Marketing Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse plans to invest funds into maintaining a strong SEO presence on search engines like Google and Bing. When a person types in “local fine dining restaurant” or “Oklahoma City restaurant”, Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse will appear in the top three choices. The website will include the full menu, location, hours, and lots of pictures of the food, drinks, and steaks. Third Party Delivery Sites Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse will maintain a presence on sites like GrubHub, Uber Eats, Doordash, and Postmates so that people looking for local food to be delivered will see Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse listed near the top.
The company will hire the following:
- 4 sous chefs
- 2 bartenders
- 2 hostesses
- The company will hire an advertising agency and an accounting firm
Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse aims to open in the next 6 months. The following are the milestones needed in order to obtain this goal.
7/1/202X – Execute lease for prime location in the Plaza District.
7/2/202X – Begin construction of restaurant build-out.
7/10/202X – Finalize menu.
7/17/202X – Hire advertising company to begin developing marketing efforts.
8/15/202X – Start of marketing campaign
8/22/202X – Final walk-thru of completed restaurant build-out.
8/25/202X – Hire team of sous chefs, servers, and bussers.
9/1/202X – Decoration and set up of restaurant.
9/15/202X – Grand Opening of Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse
Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse will be owned and operated by Chef Peter Logan and Anastasia Gillette. Each will have a 50% ownership stake in the restaurant.
Chef Peter Logan, Co-Owner
Chef Peter Logan is an Oklahoma City native and has been in the restaurant industry for over ten years. He was trained in a prestigious Le Cordon Bleu Culinary Academy in San Francisco and has worked in some of the nation’s most prestigious fine dining restaurants. His tenure has took him from the west coast to the east coast, and now he’s back doing what he loves in his hometown of Oklahoma City.
Chef Peter will manage the kitchen operations of Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse. He will train and oversee the sous chefs, manage inventory, place food inventory orders, deal with the local food vendors, and ensure the highest customer satisfaction with the food.
Anastasia Gillette, Co-Owner
Anastasia Gillette was born and raised in Oklahoma City and has garnered over ten years in the restaurant industry as well. While in college, Anastasia worked as a hostess at one of the area’s most prestigious restaurant establishments. While there, she was eventually promoted to Front of the House Manager where she oversaw the hostesses, servers, bussers, bartenders, and reservations. Her passion always led to the beverage portion of the restaurant so she obtained her Sommelier certificate in 2019. With her wine education, Anastasia is able to cultivate an interesting and elegant wine selection for the restaurant.
Anastasia will oversee front of the house operations, maintain and ensure customer service, and manage all reservations. She will also be in charge of the bar and wine ordering, training of front of the house staff, and will manage the restaurant’s social media accounts once they are set up.
Key revenue & costs.
The revenue drivers for Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse will come from the food and drink menu items being offered daily.
The cost drivers will be the ingredients and products needed to make the menu items as well as the cooking materials. A significant cost driver is the fine dining equipment, serving dishes, and beer and wine glasses. Other cost drivers will be the overhead expenses of payroll for the employees, accounting firm, and cost of the advertising agency.
Funding Requirements and Use of Funds
Bluehorn Restaurant & Steakhouse is seeking $300,000 in debt financing to open its start-up restaurant. The breakout of the funding is below:
Cash Flow Statement
Restaurant Business Plan FAQs
What is a restaurant business plan.
A restaurant business plan is a plan to start and/or grow your restaurant business. Among other things, it outlines your business concept, identifies your target customers, presents your marketing plan and details your financial projections.
You can easily complete your restaurant business plan using our Restaurant Business Plan Template here .
What Are the Main Types of Restaurants?
There are many types of restaurant businesses. Restaurants can range in type from fast food, fast casual, moderate casual, fine dining, and bar and restaurant types. Restaurants also come in a variety of different ethnic or themed categories, such as Mexican restaurants, Asian restaurants, American, etc. Some restaurants also go mobile and have food trucks.
How Do You Get Funding for Your Restaurant Business Plan?
Restaurant businesses are most likely to receive funding from banks. Typically you will find a local bank and present your business plan to them. Another option for a restaurant business is to obtain a small business loan. SBA loans are a popular option as they offer longer loan terms with lower interest rates.
What are the Steps To Start a Restaurant Business?
1. Develop A Restaurant Business Plan - The first step in starting a business is to create a detailed restaurant business plan that outlines all aspects of the venture. This should include potential market size and target customers, the services or products you will offer, pricing strategies and a detailed financial forecast.
2. Choose Your Legal Structure - It's important to select an appropriate legal entity for your restaurant business. This could be a limited liability company (LLC), corporation, partnership, or sole proprietorship. Each type has its own benefits and drawbacks so it’s important to do research and choose wisely so that your restaurant business is in compliance with local laws.
3. Register Your Restaurant Business - Once you have chosen a legal structure, the next step is to register your restaurant business with the government or state where you’re operating from. This includes obtaining licenses and permits as required by federal, state, and local laws.
4. Identify Financing Options - It’s likely that you’ll need some capital to start your restaurant business, so take some time to identify what financing options are available such as bank loans, investor funding, grants, or crowdfunding platforms.
5. Choose a Location - Whether you plan on operating out of a physical location or not, you should always have an idea of where you’ll be based should it become necessary in the future as well as what kind of space would be suitable for your operations.
6. Hire Employees - There are several ways to find qualified employees including job boards like LinkedIn or Indeed as well as hiring agencies if needed – depending on what type of employees you need it might also be more effective to reach out directly through networking events.
7. Acquire Necessary Restaurant Equipment & Supplies - In order to start your restaurant business, you'll need to purchase all of the necessary equipment and supplies to run a successful operation.
8. Market & Promote Your Business - Once you have all the necessary pieces in place, it’s time to start promoting and marketing your restaurant business. This includes creating a website, utilizing social media platforms like Facebook or Twitter, and having an effective Search Engine Optimization (SEO) strategy. You should also consider traditional marketing techniques such as radio or print advertising.
Learn more about how to start a successful restaurant business:
- How to Start a Restaurant Business
Where Can I Get a Restaurant Business Plan PDF?
You can download our free restaurant business plan template PDF here . This is a sample restaurant business plan template you can use in PDF format.
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Restaurant Business Plan: What To Include, Plus 8 Examples
- Business Growth & Management , Templates & Guides
Do you want to ensure the success of your new foodservice endeavor? Write a restaurant business plan.
In this article, the experts at Sling tell you why a business plan is vital for both new and existing businesses and give you tips on what to include.
Table Of Contents
What Is A Restaurant Business Plan?
Why is a restaurant business plan important, questions to ask first, what to include in an effective restaurant business plan, how to format a restaurant business plan, efficient workforce management is essential for success.
At its most basic, a restaurant business plan is a written document that describes your restaurant’s goals and the steps you will take to make those goals a reality.
This business plan also describes the nature of the business itself, financial projections, background information, and organizational strategies that govern the day-to-day activity of your restaurant.
A restaurant business plan is vital for the success of your endeavor because, without one, it is very difficult — sometimes even impossible — to obtain funding from an investor or a bank.
Without that all-important starting or operational capital, you may not be able to keep your doors open for long, if at all.
Even if funding isn’t a primary concern, a business plan provides you — the business owner or manager — with clear direction on how to translate general strategies into actionable plans for reaching your goals.
The plan can help solidify everything from the boots-on-the-ground functional strategy to the mid-level business strategy all the way up to the driving-force corporate strategy .
Think of this plan as a roadmap that guides your way when things are going smoothly and, more importantly, when they aren’t.
If you want to give your restaurant the best chance for success, start by writing a business plan.
Sitting down to write a restaurant business plan can be a daunting task.
As you’ll see in the What To Include In An Effective Restaurant Business Plan section below, you’ll need a lot of information and detail to ensure that the final document is both complete and effective.
Instead of starting with word one, it is hugely beneficial to answer a number of general questions first.
These questions will help you narrow down the information to include in your plan so the composition process feels less difficult.
The questions are:
- What problem does the business’s product or service solve?
- What niche will the business fill?
- What is the business’s solution to the problem?
- Who are the business’s customers?
- How will the business market and sell its products to them?
- What is the size of the market for this solution?
- What is the business model for the business?
- How will the business make money?
- Who are the competitors?
- How will the business maintain a competitive advantage?
- How does the business plan to manage growth?
- Who will run the business?
- What makes those individuals qualified to do so?
- What are the risks and threats confronting the business?
- What can you do to mitigate those risks and threats?
- What are the business’s capital and resource requirements?
- What are the business’s historical and projected financial statements?
Depending on your business, some of these questions may not apply or you may not have applicable answers.
Nevertheless, it helps to think about, and try to provide details for, the whole list so your finished restaurant business plan is as complete as possible.
Once you’ve answered the questions for your business, you can transfer a large portion of that information to the business plan itself.
We’ll discuss exactly what to include in the next section.
In this section, we’ll show you what to include in an effective restaurant business plan and provide a brief example of each component.
1) Executive Summary
You should always start any business plan with an executive summary. This gives the reader a brief introduction into common elements, such as:
- Mission statement
- Overhead costs
- Labor costs
- Return on investment (ROI)
This portion of your plan should pique the reader’s interest and make them want to read more.
Fanty & Mingo’s is a 50-seat fine-dining restaurant that will focus on Sweruvian (Swedish/Peruvian) fusion fare.
We will keep overhead and labor costs low thanks to simple but elegant decor , highly skilled food-prep staff, and well-trained servers.
Because of the location and surrounding booming economy, we estimate ROI at 20 percent per annum.
2) Mission Statement
A mission statement is a short description of what your business does for its customers, employees, and owners.
This is in contrast to your business’s vision statement which is a declaration of objectives that guide internal decision-making.
While the two are closely related and can be hard to distinguish, it often helps to think in terms of who, what, why, and where.
The vision statement is the where of your business — where you want your business to be and where you want your customers and community to be as a result.
The mission statement is the who , what , and why of your business — it’s an action plan that makes the vision statement a reality
Here’s an example of a mission statement for our fictional company:
Fanty and Mingo’s takes pride in making the best Sweruvian food, providing fast, friendly, and accurate service. It is our goal to be the employer of choice and offer team members opportunities for growth, advancement, and a rewarding career in a fun and safe working environment.
3) Company Description
In this section of your restaurant business plan, you fully introduce your company to the reader. Every business’s company description will be different and include its own pertinent information.
Useful details to include are:
- Owner’s details
- Brief description of their experience
- Legal standing
- Short-term goals
- Long-term goals
- Brief market study
- An understanding of the trends in your niche
- Why your business will succeed in these market conditions
Again, you don’t have to include all of this information in your company description. Choose the ones that are most relevant to your business and make the most sense to communicate to your readers.
Fanty & Mingo’s will start out as an LLC, owned and operated by founders Malcolm Reynolds and Zoe Washburne. Mr. Reynolds will serve as managing partner and Ms. Washburne as general manager.
We will combine atmosphere, friendly and knowledgeable staff, and menu variety to create a unique experience for our diners and to reach our goal of high value in the fusion food niche.
Our gross margin is higher than industry average, but we plan to spend more on payroll to attract the best team.
We estimate moderate growth for the first two years while word-of-mouth about our restaurant spreads through the area.
4) Market Analysis
A market analysis is a combination of three different views of the niche you want to enter:
- The industry as a whole
- The competition your restaurant will face
- The marketing you’ll execute to bring in customers
This section should be a brief introduction to these concepts. You can expand on them in other sections of your restaurant business plan.
The restaurant industry in our chosen location is wide open thanks in large part to the revitalization of the city’s center.
A few restaurants have already staked their claim there, but most are bars and non-family-friendly offerings.
Fanty & Mingo’s will focus on both tourist and local restaurant clientele. We want to bring in people that have a desire for delicious food and an exotic atmosphere.
We break down our market into five distinct categories:
- High-end singles
- Businessmen and businesswomen
We will target those markets to grow our restaurant by up to 17 percent per year.
Every restaurant needs a good menu, and this is the section within your restaurant business plan that you describe the food you’ll serve in as much detail as possible.
You may not have your menu design complete, but you’ll likely have at least a handful of dishes that serve as the foundation of your offerings.
It’s also essential to discuss pricing and how it reflects your overall goals and operating model. This will give potential investors and partners a better understanding of your business’s target price point and profit strategy.
We don’t have room to describe a sample menu in this article, but for more information on menu engineering, menu pricing, and even a menu template, check out these helpful articles from the Sling blog:
- Menu Engineering: What It Is And How It Can Increase Profits
- Restaurant Menu Pricing: 7 Tips To Maximize Profitability
- How To Design Your Menu | Free Restaurant Menu Template
In this section, describe your potential location (or locations) so that you and your investors have a clear image of what the restaurant will look like.
Include plenty of information about the location — square footage, floor plan , design , demographics of the area, parking, etc. — to make it feel as real as possible.
We will locate Fanty & Mingo’s in the booming and rapidly expanding downtown sector of Fort Wayne, Indiana.
Ideally, we will secure at least 2,000 square feet of space with a large, open-plan dining room and rich color scheme near the newly built baseball stadium to capitalize on the pre- and post-game traffic and to appeal to the young urban professionals that live in the area.
Parking will be available along side streets and in the 1,000-vehicle parking garage two blocks away.
The marketing section of your restaurant business plan is where you should elaborate on the information you introduced in the Market Analysis section.
Go into detail about the plans you have to introduce your restaurant to the public and keep it at the top of their mind.
Fanty & Mingo’s will employ three distinct marketing tactics to increase and maintain customer awareness:
- Word-of-mouth/in-restaurant marketing
- Partnering with other local businesses
- Media exposure
We will direct each tactic at a different segment of our potential clientele in order to maximize coverage.
In the process of marketing to our target audience, we will endeavor to harness the reach of direct mail and broadcast media, the exclusivity of the VIP party, and the elegance of a highly trained sommelier and wait staff.
Even though the Financials section is further down in your restaurant business plan, it is one of the most important components for securing investors and bank funding.
We recommend hiring a trained accountant to help you prepare this section so that it will be as accurate and informative as possible.
Fanty & Mingo’s needs $250,000 of capital investment over the next year and a half for the following:
- Renovations to leased space
- Dining room furniture
- Kitchen and food-prep equipment
- Liquor license
Projected profit and loss won’t jump drastically in the first year, but, over time, Fanty & Mingo’s will develop its reputation and client base. This will lead to more rapid growth toward the third and fourth years of business.
Most entrepreneurs starting a new business find it valuable to have multiple formats of their business plan.
The information, data, and details remain the same, but the length and how you present them will change to fit a specific set of circumstances.
Below we discuss the four most common business plan formats to cover a multitude of potential situations.
An elevator pitch is a short summary of your restaurant business plan’s executive summary.
Rather than being packed full of details, the elevator pitch is a quick teaser of sorts that you use on a short elevator ride (hence the name) to stimulate interest in potential customers, partners, and investors
As such, an effective elevator pitch is between 30 and 60 seconds and hits the high points of your restaurant business plan.
A pitch deck is a slide show and oral presentation that is designed to stimulate discussion and motivate interested parties to investigate deeper into your stakeholder plan (more on that below).
Most pitch decks are designed to cover the executive summary and include key graphs that illustrate market trends and benchmarks you used (and will use) to make decisions about your business.
Some entrepreneurs even include time and space in their pitch deck to demonstrate new products coming down the pipeline.
This won’t necessarily apply to a restaurant business plan, but, if logistics permit, you could distribute small samples of your current fare or tasting portions of new dishes you’re developing.
Stakeholder Plan (External)
A stakeholder plan is the standard written presentation that business owners use to describe the details of their business model to customers, partners, and potential investors.
The stakeholder plan can be as long as is necessary to communicate the current and future state of your business, but it must be well-written, well-formatted, and targeted at those looking at your business from the outside in.
Think of your stakeholder plan as a tool to convince others that they should get involved in making your business a reality. Write it in such a way that readers will want to partner with you to help your business grow.
Management Plan (Internal)
A management plan is a form of your restaurant business plan that describes the details that the owners and managers need to make the business run smoothly.
While the stakeholder plan is an external document, the management plan is an internal document.
Most of the details in the management plan will be of little or no interest to external stakeholders so you can write it with a higher degree of candor and informality.
After you’ve created your restaurant business plan, it’s time to take steps to make it a reality.
One of the biggest challenges in ensuring that your business runs smoothly and successfully is managing and optimizing your team. The Sling app can help.
Sling not only includes powerful and intuitive artificial-intelligence-based scheduling tools but also many other features to help make your workforce management more efficient, including:
- Time and attendance tracking
- Built-in time clock
- Labor cost optimization
- Data analysis and reporting
- Messaging and communication
- And much more…
With Sling, you can schedule faster, communicate better, and organize and manage your work from a single, integrated platform. And when you use Sling for all of your scheduling needs, you’ll have more time to focus on bringing your restaurant business plan to life.
For more free resources to help you manage your business better, organize and schedule your team, and track and calculate labor costs, visit GetSling.com today.
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This content is for informational purposes and is not intended as legal, tax, HR, or any other professional advice. Please contact an attorney or other professional for specific advice.
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Restaurant Business Plan Template
Written by Dave Lavinsky
If you want to start a restaurant or expand your current one, you need a business plan.
Over the past 20+ years, we have helped over 5,000 entrepreneurs and business owners create business plans to start and grow their restaurants. On this page, we will first give you some background information with regards to the importance of business planning. We will then go through a restaurant business plan step-by-step so you can create your restaurant’s business plan today.
Download our Restaurant Business Plan Template here >
What Is a Restaurant Business Plan?
A restaurant business plan provides a snapshot of your restaurant business as it stands today, and lays out your projected growth plan for the next five years. It explains your business goals and your strategy for reaching them. It also includes market research, information about your target market, and a sample menu to support your winning restaurant business plan.
Why You Need a Restaurant Business Plan
If you’re looking to start a restaurant or grow the existing restaurant you need a business plan. A restaurant business plan will help you secure funding, if needed, and plan out the growth of your restaurant in order to improve your chances of success. Your restaurant business plan is a living document that should be updated annually as your company grows and changes.
Sources of Funding for Restaurants
With regards to funding, the main sources of funding for a restaurant are bank loans and angel investors. With regards to bank loans, banks will want to review your restaurant business plan and gain confidence that you will be able to repay your loan and interest.
To acquire this confidence, the loan officer will not only want to confirm that your financials are reasonable. But they will want to see a professional restaurant business plan. Such a plan will give them the confidence that you can successfully and professionally operate a business.
The second most common form of funding for a restaurant is angel investors. Angel investors are wealthy individuals who will write you a check. They will either take equity in return for their funding or, like a bank, they will give you a loan. Private equity groups are also a good source of funding for restaurant chains looking to expand further.
Finish Your Business Plan Today!
How to write a restaurant business plan.
Use the following restaurant business plan template which includes the 10 key elements for how to write a restaurant business plan that will help you start, grow, and/or secure funding for your business.
Your executive summary provides an introduction to your restaurant business plan, but it is normally the last section you write because it provides a summary of each key section of your business plan.
The goal of your Executive Summary is to quickly engage the reader. Explain to them the type of restaurant business you are operating and the status; for example, are you a startup, do you have a restaurant that you would like to grow, or are you operating a chain of restaurants?
Next, provide an overview of each of the subsequent sections of your business plan. For example, give a brief overview of the restaurant industry. Discuss the type of restaurant you are operating. Detail your direct competitors. Give an overview of your target customers. Provide a snapshot of your marketing plan. Identify the key members of your team. And offer a financial analysis of your business.
In your company analysis, you will provide a brief description of the type of restaurant you are operating.
For example, are you writing a small restaurant business plan or a business plan for a restaurant franchise. Further, you might operate one of the following types:
- Fine Dining : characterized by the fancy decor, a dress code, and high prices
- Casual Dining : offers waiter/waitress service in a nice (but not overly fancy) atmosphere with moderate prices
- Fast Casual : characterized by quality food (close to the quality of casual dining) but no waiter/waitress service in an accessible atmosphere
- Fast Food : quick service style provided at the counter or via a drive-through. Lowest quality food and lowest prices
- Steak Restaurant : focuses on steak entrees and is usually a higher priced and fancier restaurant
- Buffet Restaurant : may or may not offer waiter/waitress service. Patrons serve themselves from buffet food selection
- Ethnic Restaurant : focuses on a specific ethnic cuisine such as Indian food, Mexican food, or Moroccan cuisine.
Within these types of restaurants, there are also ethnic food specialties such as American, Italian, Japanese, Chinese, Indian, etc.
In addition to explaining the type of restaurant you operate, the Company Analysis section of your restaurant business plan needs to provide background on the business.
Include answers to questions such as:
- When and why did you start the business?
- Your mission statement and how it connects to your restaurant’s brand.
- What milestones have you achieved to date? Milestones could include sales goals you’ve reached, new restaurant openings, etc.
- Your legal business structure. Are you incorporated as an S-Corp? An LLC? A sole proprietorship? Explain your legal structure here.
In your industry analysis, also called a Market Analysis, you need to provide a market overview and an overview of the industry.
While this may seem unnecessary, it serves multiple purposes.
First, researching the restaurant industry educates you. It helps you understand the target market in which you are operating.
Secondly, research can improve your strategy particularly if your research identifies market trends. For example, if there was a trend towards speedy restaurant services, it would be helpful to ensure your business plan calls for take-out or other quick-service options.
The third reason for market research is to prove to readers that you are an expert in your industry. By conducting the research and presenting it in your business plan, you achieve just that.
The following questions should be answered in the industry analysis section of your restaurant business plan:
- How big is the restaurant business (in dollars)?
- Is the market declining or increasing?
- Who are the key competitors in the market?
- Who are the key suppliers in the market?
- What trends are affecting the industry?
- What is the industry’s growth forecast over the next 5 – 10 years?
- What is the relevant market size? That is, how big is the potential market for your restaurant? You can extrapolate such a figure by assessing the size of the market in the entire country and then applying that figure to your local population.
The customer analysis section of your restaurant business plan must detail the customer base or target market you serve and/or expect to serve.
The following are examples of customer segments: business executives, college students, sports enthusiasts, soccer moms, techies, teens, baby boomers, etc.
As you can imagine, the customer segment(s) you choose will have a great impact on the type of restaurant you operate. Clearly, baby boomers would want a different atmosphere, pricing and sample menu options, and would respond to different marketing promotions than teens.
Try to break out your customers in terms of their demographic and psychographic profiles. With regards to diner demographics, include a discussion of the ages, genders, locations, and average income levels of the new customers you seek to serve. Because most restaurants primarily serve customers living in the same city or town, such demographic information is easy to find on government websites.
Psychographic profiles explain the wants and needs of your target customers. This should also include how your customers choose where they should eat, their dining habits, and how much they are willing to spend on a meal.
The answers to the following questions should be included in your customer analysis:
- Who is your target market?
- What are their needs and wants?
- How do they make dining decisions?
- What motivates them to choose one restaurant over another?
The more you can understand and define these needs, the better you will do in attracting and building customer loyalty.
This competitive research should help you identify the direct and indirect competitors that your business faces and then focus on the latter.
Direct competitors are other restaurants.
Indirect competitors are other options that customers have to purchase from you that aren’t directly competing. This includes restaurants, supermarkets, and customers preparing dishes for themselves at home. You need to mention such competition to show you understand that not everyone frequents a restaurant each day.
With regards to direct competition, you want to detail the other restaurants with which you compete. Your greatest competitors will be restaurants located very close to your specific location, who are of the same type (e.g., fine dining, casual dining, etc.) and who offer the same cuisine (Japanese, Italian, etc.).
For each such competitor, provide an overview of the other businesses and document their strengths and weaknesses. Unless you once worked at your competitors’ businesses, it will be impossible to know everything about them. But you should be able to find out key things about them such as:
- What types of repeat customers do they serve?
- What menu items do they offer?
- What is their pricing (premium, low, etc.)?
- What are they good at?
- What are their weaknesses?
With regards to the last two questions, think about your answers from the existing customers’ perspective. And don’t hesitate to find out this information from customers by reviewing your competitors’ Yelp listings and other review pages.
The final part of this section is to document your areas of competitive advantage. For example:
- Will you provide superior food items?
- Will you provide menu items that your competitors don’t offer?
- Will you make it easier or faster for customers to acquire your meals?
- Will you provide better customer service?
- Will you offer better pricing?
Think about your unique selling points that will help you outperform your competition and document them in this section of your business plan.
Traditionally, a marketing plan includes the four P’s: Product, Price, Place, and Promotion. For a restaurant business plan, your marketing plan should include the following:
Product : in the product section you should reiterate the type of restaurant that you documented in your Company Analysis. Then, detail the specific menu items you offer/will offer.
Price : Document the prices. Essentially in the product and price sub-sections of your marketing plan, you are presenting the menu items you offer and their prices.
Place : Place refers to the location of your restaurant. Perform a location analysis and mention how the location will impact your success. For example, is your restaurant located next to a heavily populated office building, or gym? Discuss how your location might provide a steady stream of customers. Also, if you operate or plan to operate food trucks, detail the locations where the trucks will operate.
Promotions : the final part of your restaurant marketing plan is the promotions section. Here you will document how you will drive customers to your location(s). The following are some promotional methods you might consider:
- Making your restaurant’s front store extra appealing to attract passing customers
- Search engine marketing and optimization
- Social media posting/advertising
- Advertising in local papers and magazines
- Reaching out to local bloggers and websites
- Local radio advertising
- Banner ads at local venues
While the earlier sections of your restaurant business plan explained your goals, your operational plan describes how you will meet them.
This section of your restaurant business plan should have two key elements as follows:
- Everyday short-term processes include all of the tasks involved in running your restaurant such as serving customers, procuring supplies, keeping the restaurant clean, etc.
- Long-term goals are the milestones you hope to achieve. These could include the dates when you expect to serve your 1,000th customer, or when you hope to reach $X in sales. It could also be when you expect to hire your Xth employee or launch a new location.
To demonstrate your restaurant’s ability to succeed as a business, a strong management team is essential. Highlight your key players’ backgrounds, emphasizing those skills and experiences that prove their ability to grow a company.
Ideally, you and/or your team members have direct experience in the restaurant business. If so, highlight this experience and expertise. But also highlight any experience that you think will help your business succeed.
If your team is lacking, consider assembling an advisory board. An advisory board would include 2 to 8 individuals who would act like mentors to your business. They would help answer questions and provide strategic guidance. If needed, look for advisory board members with experience operating restaurants and/or successfully running small businesses.
Your financial plan should include your 5-year financial statement broken out both monthly or quarterly for the first year and then annually. Your financial statements include your income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow statements.
Pro-Forma Profit & Loss Statement / Income Statement
An income statement is more commonly called a Profit and Loss statement or P&L. It shows how much revenue you expect to earn or have earned, and then subtracts your costs to show your actual or projected profit.
In developing your income statement, you need to devise assumptions. For example, will you serve 100 customers per day or 200? And will sales grow by 2% or 10% per year? As you can imagine, your choice of assumptions will greatly impact the financial forecasts for your business. As much as possible, conduct research to try to root your assumptions in reality.
Pro-Forma Balance Sheets
While balance sheets include much information, to simplify them to the key items you need to know about, balance sheets show your assets and liabilities.
For instance, if you spend $250,000 on building out your restaurant, that will not give you immediate profits. Rather it is an asset that will hopefully help you generate profits for years to come. Likewise, if a bank writes you a check for $100.000, you don’t need to pay it back immediately. Rather, that is a liability you will pay back over time.
Pro-Forma Cash Flow Statement
Your cash flow statement will help determine how much money you need to start or grow your business and make sure you never run out of money. What most entrepreneurs and business owners don’t realize is that you can turn a profit but run out of money and go bankrupt.
For example, let’s say a company approached you with a massive $100,000 catering contract, that would cost you $50,000 to fulfill. Well, in most cases, you would have to pay that $50,000 now for ingredients, supplies, equipment rentals, employee salaries, etc. But let’s say the company didn’t pay you for 180 days. During that 180-day period, you could run out of money.
In developing your Income Statement and Balance Sheets be sure to include several of the key costs needed in starting or growing a restaurant:
- Location build-out including design fees, construction, etc.
- Cost of equipment like stoves, refrigerators, blenders
- Cost of ingredients and maintaining an adequate amount of supplies
- Payroll or salaries paid to staff
- Business insurance
- Taxes and permits
- Legal expenses
Attach your full financial projections, detailed cost analysis and/or break-even analysis in the appendix of your business plan along with any supporting documents that make your plan more compelling. For example, you might include your store design blueprint, location lease, or initial menu design.
Taking the time to write your own restaurant business plan for your business is a worthwhile endeavor. It will help you communicate your ideas and provide potential investors with the information they need to make an informed decision about investing in your restaurant.
A well-crafted business plan will also give you a road map for growing your business and achieving your long-term goals. So, while it may take some time to put together, it will be well worth the effort in the end.
If you follow the restaurant business plan template above, by the time you are done, you will truly be an expert. You will really understand the restaurant business, your competition, and your existing customers. You will have developed a marketing plan and will really understand what it takes to launch and grow a successful restaurant concept.
Want more tips? Check out our related articles:
- How to Start a Restaurant
- Restaurant Startup Costs: How Much Does It Cost To Start a Restaurant?
- How To Write a Restaurant Marketing Plan + Template & Examples
- How To Get Funding To Start and/or Grow Your Restaurant
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Restaurant Business Plan Template FAQs
What is the easiest way to complete my restaurant business plan.
Growthink’s Ultimate Restaurant Business Plan Template allows you to quickly and easily complete your restaurant business plan.
Where Can I Download a Free Restaurant Business Plan PDF?
You can download our restaurant business plan PDF template here . This is a restaurant business plan template you can use in PDF format.
Where Can I Find a Small Restaurant Business Plan PDF?
Our small restaurant business plan PDF is a free resource to to help you get started on your own small restaurant business plan.
Other Helpful Business Plan Articles & Templates
Restaurant Business Plan: Step-by-Step Guide + examples
Dreaming of opening a 🍴 restaurant? Passion, creativity, and delicious food are key. But for long-term success, a business plan is essential too.
Are you dreaming of owning your own restaurant? Picture the sizzle of a hot skillet, the laughter of satisfied guests, and the fulfillment of sharing your culinary creations with the world. But before you dive into this flavorful adventure, there’s a crucial ingredient you can’t overlook: a winning restaurant business plan.
What is a business plan for?
A business plan is a vital document for every restaurant owner. It provides a roadmap for success, helps secure funding, guides financial and operational decisions, mitigates risks, and facilitates effective communication.
Just like any other business, a restaurant needs a well-crafted business plan to ensure its success and sustainability. Without a business plan, you risk operating in the dark, making decisions on a whim, and facing unexpected challenges that could have been avoided.
Investing time and effort into creating a solid business plan sets your restaurant on the path to achieving your culinary dreams and exceeding customer expectations.
Create Restaurant’s Business Plan in these 9 steps:
✔️ 1. Start with an executive summary ✔️ 2. Describe your concept ✔️ 3. Conduct Market analysis ✔️ 4. Define your management and organization ✔️ 5. Give a sample “yummy” Menu ✔️ 6. Create design and branding ✔️ 7. Provide a Location ✔️ 8. Establish Marketing plan ✔️ 9. Define Financial plan
1. Executive summary
The executive summary is like the appetizer of your restaurant business plan – it’s the first bite that leaves a lasting impression. Its purpose is to capture the essence of your entire plan and entice time-crunched reviewers, such as potential investors and lenders, to delve deeper into your vision. It’s worth noting that the executive summary should be the final section you write.
To craft a concise and captivating summary, it’s crucial to highlight key points, including your unique concept, target market, and financial projections. Additionally, bear in mind that the executive summary sets the tone for the rest of your plan, so it’s essential to make it irresistible and leave readers yearning for more.
When it comes to the executive summary of your restaurant business plan, brevity is key . You have only one page to capture the attention of readers, but don’t worry, it’s definitely doable. Here’s what your executive summary should include:
- Restaurant concept : What does your business do?
- Goals and vision : What does your business want to achieve?
- Restaurant differentiation : What makes your menu/concept different, and what sets you apart?
- Projected financial state : What revenue do you anticipate?
- The team : Who is involved in the business?
2. Describe your concept
In the world of restaurant business plans, there’s a section that holds immense importance. It’s the one that answers two fundamental questions: Who are you, and what do you plan to do?
This is the section where you fully introduce your company, and it deserves special attention. Share all the important details that paint a vivid picture of your unique business. Include the restaurant’s name, location, and contact information. Additionally, provide relevant details such as the chef’s background and what makes your restaurant stand out in the market.
Curious about concept creation? Watch our short video featuring a summary of an example restaurant concept below! 👇
Now is your opportunity to showcase your vision and establish a unique identity for your restaurant. Utilize this section to highlight what sets you apart and capture the reader’s imagination.
3. Market analysis
Market analysis helps you understand your potential customers, competition, and overall restaurant market trends. It’s like having a crystal ball to shape your restaurant’s success.
When it comes to your potential market, you want to know how many people are hungry for what you’re serving. Sounds exciting, right? To estimate this, you’ll gather data on your target customers, like their age group or preferences, and combine it with industry trends. It’s like finding the perfect recipe to satisfy their cravings.
Now, let’s tackle the competition. Every restaurant has rivals, even if they’re serving a unique dish. It’s crucial to identify direct or indirect competitors and understand what makes you stand out. Are you offering affordable prices, a one-of-a-kind experience, or catering to a specific niche? Highlight your “secret sauce” that sets you apart from the rest.
Market analysis for restaurant’s business plan
Market analysis also involves a SWOT analysis. Don’t let the jargon scare you. It simply means evaluating your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. Think of it as a superhero assessment for your restaurant. Identify what you excel at, areas for improvement, potential market opportunities, and external factors that could impact your success.
Example of SWOT analysis for a restaurant
Remember, market analysis is like a compass guiding your restaurant’s journey. It helps you make informed decisions, attract investors, and stay ahead of the game. So, embrace the power of market analysis, and let it shape the destiny of your delicious dining destination.
4. Management and organization
Effective management and organization are critical for success in the restaurant sector. This section of your business plan introduces the talented individuals who will lead your restaurant to new heights.
Outline your legal structure, whether it’s an S corporation, limited partnership, or sole proprietorship, providing key information for stakeholders.
Showcase your management team using an organizational chart to highlight their roles, responsibilities, and contributions. Their expertise and guidance are crucial for seamless operations and exceptional customer experiences.
With a strong management team in place, your restaurant is poised for success. They are the driving force behind your journey to greatness. Let’s meet the key players who will make it happen!
Streamline your operations and optimize your financial performance With resOs , you can efficiently manage reservations, track inventory, analyze sales data, and streamline your overall workflow. Get your FREE plan
5. Sample “yummy” Menu
In the restaurant industry, your menu plays a main role as the core product. Include a section in your business plan that highlights key details about your menu offerings to engage readers.
If you offer a diverse range of dishes, provide a brief overview of each category. Alternatively, if your menu focuses on specific specialties or signature dishes, provide more detailed descriptions for each item.
You can also mention any upcoming menu additions or unique culinary creations that will enhance profitability and attract customers.
6. Design and branding
When it comes to starting a restaurant, don’t underestimate the power of design and branding. They’re the secret ingredients that can make your establishment truly stand out. Think about it – when customers walk through your front door, what do they see? The right design and branding can instantly captivate their attention and make them feel right at home.
So, take some time to envision the overall aesthetic and mood you want to create.
Do you imagine a cozy and rustic setting or a sleek and modern vibe?
Let your creativity shine through! Include captivating photos of similar restaurants that inspire you and give potential investors a glimpse of your vision.
And don’t forget about your logo! If you’ve already designed one, proudly showcase it in your business plan. It’s the visual representation of your restaurant’s personality and will help establish brand recognition.
resOS’ customizable interface for your booking system
Stand out in the competitive restaurant industry with resOS’ customizable booking management system . Personalize every aspect of the interface to reflect your restaurant’s unique brand identity. Seamlessly integrate your logo, colors, and visual elements, creating a cohesive and immersive experience for your guests. With resOS, you have the power to revolutionize your restaurant’s image and leave a lasting impression.
Details matter too! Share your plans for specific design elements , from the choice of furniture to the color palette that will adorn your space. The more you paint a vivid picture, the more investors and customers will be enticed by your unique ambiance.
For a restaurant, location can make or break the business. Occasionally, a restaurant concept is so good that people go out of their way to find it. But, more realistically, your location needs to be convenient for your target market. If it’s hard for your customers to get to you, hard for them to park, and not something they notice as they drive by, they’re unlikely to check your restaurant out.
In your business plan, make sure to discuss the potential locations that you hope to occupy, assuming you haven’t already secured the location. Explain why the location is ideal for your target market and how the location will help attract customers.
Unlock the potential of your restaurant’s location and streamline reservations with resOS. Our platform offers seamless integration with Reserve With Google , allowing customers to easily discover and book tables directly from Google search results and maps. By enabling this feature, you’ll maximize your restaurant’s visibility and attract more diners with just a few clicks. Experience the power of location-based reservations with resOS .
Be sure to explain the complete costs of your location and what kinds of renovations will be necessary to open your restaurant.
8. Marketing plan
In today’s competitive restaurant industry, it’s important to showcase your marketing strategy to investors. They want to know how you’ll create buzz and keep it going before and after your grand opening.
Create a winning business plan with a strong marketing focus. Our Restaurant Business Plan Steps Graphic (👆 see above) is your visual guide, including key marketing strategies. Download or save for later and plan your path to success.
Whether you’ve enlisted a top-notch Marketing company or have a solid ready-to-go marketing plan, highlight your chosen path. Discuss the unique strengths of your selected agency and why they stand out, including their notable clients. Alternatively, showcase your in-house plan, leveraging social media, your website, and valuable media connections.
A well-crafted marketing plan holds the key to differentiating your restaurant and attracting customers. Prepare to tantalize taste buds and offer an exceptional dining experience. Stay in tune with the latest restaurant industry trends, leverage effective marketing tools, and optimize your online presence.
Lastly, integrate a robust restaurant booking system to streamline reservations and enhance the overall customer experience. With these strategic elements in place, success is within your reach.
9. Financial Plan
Financial analysis is a crucial part of your restaurant’s business plan. It helps investors assess the profitability of your concept and whether it’s a worthwhile investment. In this section, you’ll outline how you plan to allocate your funds in the first year and provide projections for costs and revenues.
Here are the 🔑 key components to include:
Investment Plan: Explain the initial investment costs, such as kitchen equipment, furniture, employee wages, legal fees, marketing expenses, and working capital. This shows how you’ll use your funds effectively.
Profit and Loss Projection: Estimate your restaurant’s costs and sales figures in the profit and loss statement. Consider factors like the size of your establishment, your target market, and the existing competition in your chosen location.
Break-Even Analysis: Show investors the monthly revenue you need to achieve to cover all your expenses and reach profitability. This analysis considers overhead costs, operational expenses, and factors that may affect revenue fluctuations throughout the year.
Claim your FREE plan on resOS today! Ready to revolutionize your business management? Join resos.com for FREE and take control of your operations. ✅ Seamless calendar integration ✅ Customizable booking forms ✅ Automated reminders ✅ Real-time availability updates Don’t miss out! Sign up now at resos.com and experience stress-free scheduling. Your time is valuable, so claim your FREE plan today!
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How to Write a Restaurant Business Plan
A comprehensive business plan is the foundation of every successful restaurant. You need a business plan before you can begin to execute on anything having to do with opening your establishment. A proper business plan is a guide that will help take your idea from concept to reality.
When you begin to seek professional and financial support for your new business, your business plan will be the primary document of reference to describe your concept, market, and potential for profitability. You need a business plan for investors, lenders, consultants, partners, and other team members who will help make your dream of opening a restaurant come true.
In this article, we’ll walk you through every part of how to write a restaurant business plan, explain the function of each section, and provide an example you can use as a starting point.
Before Writing Your Business Plan: Questions to Answer
Before you start writing your business plan, you’ll want to consider a few key things. Knowing the answers to these questions will make writing your business plan and communicating your vision a hundred times easier. Keep the answers to these questions top of mind as you’re writing your business plan.
Who is your business plan for?
Are you approaching investors and lenders, or is your plan specifically for you and your staff? You’ll need to adapt your writing for different audience types, and perhaps place emphasis on certain sections over others depending on your primary audience.
Where will your restaurant be located?
If you don’t yet have a location for your restaurant , you should at least know which neighbourhood your restaurant will be located in. Your restaurant’s location will determine important elements of your business plan, like your competitive analysis, ingredient availability, venue type, etc. If you’re in the early stages of planning, you likely don’t know your exact address, but nailing it as close as you can will guide you in your writing.
What is your venue type?
You should have a clear idea of what kind of restaurant you’re opening , whether it’s an intimate cafe, craft microbrewery, or gourmet food truck. If you aren’t quite sure, you’ll need to decide before you write your business plan. You should know exactly what your venue is going to be as you work through the details of a business plan.
What are your goals?
Do you want to start a food truck and then grow to open a sister restaurant, or do you want to open a full service restaurant and grow to operate a fleet of food trucks? Are you looking to open a burger place with a constant flow of customers? Or maybe you want to be the go-to place for special occasions. Be as specific as you can in your vision, and be clear on exactly what you want to achieve.
What are your credentials?
Have you worked in the restaurant industry before? How well do you know the market? Do you need any additional skills before you start your restaurant? If you’re confident you have the skills, feel free to start. But if you’ve never spent any time in a kitchen or in the foodservice industry, you may want to get some hands-on experience so you know what you’re getting into.
5 Tips on How to Write a Restaurant Business Plan
Before you start writing your business plan, here are some tips to make the process easier.
- Collect materials that are relevant, like links, articles, quotes and information that may benefit you as you are writing, and use them for inspiration or include them within the appropriate sections of your business plan.
- Taking something from concept to creation can be challenging, but try to put everything you see in your imagination down in the most accurate words possible. Go through the business plan template the first time and make tons of notes for each section, then come back to it later and flesh out your ideas further.
- If a section stumps you, make a note and move on, then revisit it later when you have more information or more clarity. Refine and rework. Be sure to add all new developments that are happening, and when you’re confident you’ve said all you can about a section, go back in and edit and re-word until you’re satisfied.
- Use graphics and images to clarify your message when you feel it’s necessary. Consider creating Pinterest boards to keep you inspired and help you get visual. Then, when you are writing your business plan, go back to your boards to pull in graphics that get your idea across better than words.
- Just as Rome wasn’t built in a day, know that your business plan will take time. It can take anywhere from weeks to months to years to get a solid grasp on what it is you’re creating. As time passes and you continue to work on it, you’ll fine-tune your message and have a crystal clear plan on your hands.
Are you confident in your vision, clear on your goals, and comfortable with your skills? Ready to jump in?
Restaurant Business Plan Template
Table of Contents
Your restaurant business plan is going to be a long document. Depending on the nature of your restaurant, your business plan could be anywhere from 10 to 50 pages – so your readers will need to find sections easily. This is where a table of contents comes in. It’ll look something like this:
- Executive Summary – p. 3
- Business Overview – p. 5
- Business Description – p. 7
- The Marketplace – p. 12
- Marketing – p. 20
- Business Operations – p. 25
- Financials – p. 30
- Business Plan Summary p. 37
After you’re finished writing your restaurant business plan, make sure to review your table of contents so that your page numbers are accurate.
Executive Summary While the Executive Summary may live at the beginning of your business plan, it’s the last thing you’ll write. The Executive Summary is a one-page summary of every section in your business plan, so that readers can get a general sense of your entire plan in one page. Remember to keep this section brief yet impactful.
Your Business Overview is simple: it’s a list of basic information about your business, such as your legal name, type of business, business number, etc. You may have some empty fields until you’re closer to actually opening. This list is for quick reference and especially important if you’ll be seeking bank loans or approaching investors:
- Legal name of business
- Trade name of business (doing business as)
- Business address or potential business address
- Current mailing address
- Phone number
- Social media handles
- Structure of business
- Date business was established
- Nature of business
- Banking details (branch and banker’s name)
Quick tip: many of the details in your business overview will be filled out as your business takes shape. fill in what you can as you go. if some of this information is unknown, don’t let it hold you up.
Your Business Description is where your restaurant comes to life. Here is where you’ll describe, in detail, what your business is going to look like, where it will be, and the kind of vibe it will have. Your Business Description answers all of the questions that relate to your vision and goals. Be as expansive as you want here – go into as much detail as possible, and don’t be afraid to use visuals! Here’s what to include in your Business Description.
Will your business be run as a sole trader, a partnership, or a company? Who is involved and what is their role? This can be a short paragraph.
Your restaurant concept is your idea . Take the time to describe why your business is special, and talk about what you’ll do differently as compared to other restaurants. Why should people choose your restaurant over another? What kind of experience will you be providing customers?
Your mission statement is one sentence that describes what your restaurant will achieve. Think of your end goal, the ultimate driving force behind your business. Your mission statement should be something that can be displayed on marketing materials, and it should express to people what your business is all about.
Short-term and long-term goals
Here you’ll want to mention any relevant personal goals, then list your short-term and long-term objectives. Think about where you’re going and what you hope to be doing in a couple of years. Your short-term goals describe your first year as a restaurant owner. Long-term goals are larger, like how you plan to scale your business and how you hope to grow. Be descriptive in this section, but also remember to remain realistic and within the scope of your projections in the financial section.
Menu and services
Include a sample menu, or menus, and discuss the details of each, such as times of day offered and the inspiration or rationale for each. If you’re going to offer catering, delivery, or any other services, mention those here. Describe anything else you’ll be selling, such as pre-packaged foods, canned or bottled drinks, or retail items such as t-shirts and hats.
You likely won’t have secured a location or negotiated a lease at this point, so instead mention the neighbourhoods you’re considering for your venue. Answer the following questions here: Which features of the neighbourhood will affect your business? What other businesses are located in the area? What kinds of people live, work, or visit the neighbourhood? Consider and document all effects that the location will have on your business, like access to parking, public transportation, walk score, etc.
Take the time to describe your concept with as much visual detail as you can. Express why these details are important (hint: they should relate back to your branding). If you’re working with a design agency or interior design specialist, mention them and show their proposals or mockups. Business description summary Finally, briefly sum up everything in this section. Your Business Description tends to be a long section, so you’ll need a summary that provides an overview of what you’re going to achieve with your business.
This section is where you’ll describe the current status of the marketplace for your business. The most important thing to remember about this section is that you’ll need to remain honest and authentic. You won’t do yourself or anyone else any favours by painting an unrealistic picture of the marketplace and how your business fits within it. This section requires a lot of research and critical thinking skills.
Visit your direct competition and gain some intel on their customer experience and menu. Ask people in your prospective neighbourhood about how businesses perform in the area. By gathering as much information as you can, your marketplace assessment will be clear and rooted in reality.
This section should provide a quick overview of the size of your customer base. What are the demographics, psychographics, and segments of your target market?
You need to know your target customers. Who will frequent your restaurant and what characteristics do they share? List statistics you’ve gathered about your market and any other relevant information about your potential customers. Make a note of any customer segments within your target demographic that have certain needs over others.
You’ll want quantitative and qualitative research to round out this section. Make sure to talk to people within your target market to gain a clear understanding of their needs and how you can serve them. You’ll also discover other valuable insights through these discussions.
Here you’ll want to list relevant statistics about past and current trends within your marketplace. Include anything that relates to the demand for your business, social or economic factors, and trends that have affected similar businesses. If you’ve done research or hired a firm to conduct some for you, mention all the outcomes from that research here.
So you know other restaurants are your competition, but you’ll need to be specific. Analyse your prospective neighbourhood, and make a list of all your competitors from small to large. Use a critical eye to determine how they differ from your establishment. Categorise your competitors into “direct” and “indirect”. Your direct competitors are those restaurants that are offering similar customer experiences and type of cuisine, while indirect competitors may be different from your restaurant but still compete for your target market’s attention and spend.
Now that you’ve analysed the competition, you should be able to spot how you’ll be able to stand out. What will your restaurant do that no one else is doing? What are your differentiators that will cause the market to take notice of your business?
After you determine your differentiators, you’ll know how your restaurant can fill potential gaps in the marketplace or provide a better option for customers. From the menu to the hours, whatever your restaurant can do better, list it here.
Now, the other side of the coin: what your restaurant may not be able to do better than the competition. Take the time to list these as challenges, provide rationale as to why your restaurant will face these barriers, and how you’ll tackle them once you’re open. Don’t be afraid of honesty here; a candid account of the challenges you’ll face will show readers you’re self-aware and ready to overcome problems with practical solutions.
Briefly sum up everything that you’ve talked about in this section, reiterating the demographics of your target market, advantages, and opportunities.
You may be an amazing chef and create exceptional dishes, but without customers and sales, you don’t have much of a business. You need a marketing strategy to get people in the door and coming back. In this section on how to write a restaurant business plan, we’ll get into your strategy: how you’re going to price your meals, how you’ll position yourself to appeal to your target customers, and how you’ll promote your business to let customers know you exist.
Describe how you’ll appeal to your target customers and where you will place yourself in the customer’s mind. Use your differentiators in the previous section to guide your positioning strategy. How will you communicate your differentiators to your market? What will you be offering the market that your customers wouldn’t be able to get anywhere else?
Describe your pricing and how it compares to similar businesses. Provide ballpark figures for different menu items and list standard pricing for your type of business. List your competitors’ prices and explain why yours will be higher or lower. Make sure to align this section with your financials so that your food and labour ratios are taken into account when crafting this section.
If you plan on creating and maintaining social media accounts like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, explain how you’ll use them to promote your business. Describe your website’s main elements, design style, and who will build it. List all paid digital promotion here such as Google ads, paid social media ads, and any agencies you’ll work with to develop and execute on all digital marketing initiatives.
Will you be holding any events, releasing a press release, or taking out any print ads?
Briefly summarise your overall marketing strategy and what you’ll concentrate on the most: digital, traditional, PR, etc. Let readers know why you think your marketing strategy will work for your type of restaurant.
You’ve described your vision, the market, and how you plan to promote your business. But how will you actually execute your plans? Who will operate your business day-to-day? Here’s where you get into the nitty-gritty details of your business operations.
Introduce everyone on your payroll. List their qualifications, special skills, and job description, with an emphasis on how they will help you reach your goals and the tasks they will do every day. Categorise each staff member into other owners, chefs, managers, servers, bartenders, etc.
List your suppliers by type: food, payment, alcohol, cleaning, etc. Note how each supplier serves your restaurant’s needs , and list their credit and payment terms. List all suppliers for the following:
- Waste removal
- Restaurant supplies like dishware and glass
- Paper products
- Payroll service
- Cleaning services
- Plants or landscaping
- Linen service
- Marketing and advertising
- Technology, such as EPOS hardware and software, mobile delivery apps, loyalty apps, and an internet provider
Your restaurant will need insurance coverage . Do some research to determine mandatory insurance and special coverage, and start to compare costs between insurance providers. List each type of insurance your restaurant will need and what it covers.
What kind of licencing does your restaurant need? List all of the licences and permits required for your restaurant and staff here. Check your local government website for the details and anything else that you are required to obtain in your area.
Business operations summary
Briefly sum up everything that you’ve talked about in the Business Operations section.
You’ve now arrived at the most important – and the most daunting – part of your restaurant business plan. This is where you prove that your idea is actually a business that can turn a profit. Complete a financial forecast that takes your concept and translates it into numbers. This exercise is the most important part of your business plan, as investors and lenders will be scrutinising these numbers before they read anything else.
Your forecast will be broken into four main parts:
- Revenue: Forecasted sales
- Controllable costs: Food and beverage costs as well as cost of labour
- Expenses: Marketing, rent, supplies, utilities, etc.
- Start-Up Costs: What it costs to get you to open, as well as things like capital improvements and training.
We’ve created a downloadable sample forecast that demonstrates what you’ll need to do. Our example is Joe’s Burgers, a small 1,000 square foot quick service restaurant with no alcoholic beverage sales. Once you understand the sample forecast, we’ve included a blank forecast sheet where you can add in your own numbers to project how profitable you’ll be. Notes about the forecast spreadsheet
- Take the blank forecast and “save as” so that if you make a mistake, you can return to the original spreadsheet and start again.
- There are formulas pre-programmed in the cells of the spreadsheet.
- If you are planning to open a restaurant that will serve alcoholic drinks, you will have to figure out your sales mix of the various types: bottled beer, draft beer, liquor, and wine, and the costs associated with each. For example, if your bottled beer cost is 28% and wine cost is 40%, you’ll have an average beverage cost of 34% to add to your forecast.
- If you are going to offer catering or other services, you can create another revenue stream that covers events executed, average spends, revenues, cost of goods sold and labour costs for that source.
Business Plan Summary
Your Business Plan Summary should tie the whole message together. Use this section to highlight how you’re different and what you’re offering, reiterating the most important points about your restaurant.
Sections to include are:
- Why you will succeed: in a few short sentences, repeat how you are different and why your business will work.
- What you need: if you’re asking for money, repeat the ask here.
- A thank you: a quick thanks at the end reminds people that you value their time and input.
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How to Write a Restaurant Business Plan: Complete Guide
- January 31, 2023
- Food & Beverage
👇 Check all our resources on restaurants 👇
Whether you’re looking to raise funding from private investors or to get a loan from a bank (like a SBA loan) to open a restaurant , you will need to prepare a solid business plan.
In this article we go through, step-by-step, all the different sections you need in the business plan of your restaurant. Use this template to create a complete, clear and solid business plan that get you funded. Let’s dive in!
1. Restaurant Executive Summary
The executive summary of a business plan gives a sneak peek of the information about your business plan to lenders and/or investors.
If the information you provide here is not concise, informative, and scannable, potential lenders and investors will lose interest.
Though the executive summary is the first and the most important section, it should normally be the last section you write because it will have the summary of different sections included in the entire plan.
Why do you need a business plan for a restaurant?
The purpose of a business plan is to secure funding through one of the following channels:
- Obtain bank financing or secure a loan from other lenders (such as a SBA loan )
- Obtain private investments from investment funds, angel investors, etc.
- Obtain a public or a private grant
How to write your restaurant’s executive summary?
Provide a precise and high-level summary of every section that you have included in your business plan. The information and the data you include in this segment should grab the attention of potential investors and lenders immediately.
Also make sure that the executive summary doesn’t exceed 2 pages in total: it’s supposed to be a summary for investors and lenders who don’t have time to scroll through 40-50 pages, so keep it short and brief.
The executive summary usually consists of 5 major sub-sections:
- Business overview : start by introducing your restaurant and the products and services that you intend offer. Mention the type of restaurant you intend to open (such as fine dining, casual dining, fast casual, ghost restaurant, café, pub, etc.), the menu and prices. Also add here the total number of customers your restaurant can host at once, its location, and some details on the surface and the design layout
- Market analysis : summarise the market where you will operate and provide a brief about the target audience, market size , competitors, etc. No need to provide granular data here, save it for the Market Overview section later on (or the appendix)
- People : introduce your restaurant’s management and employee structure. Provide a brief (no more than a couple of sentences each) of the knowledge and experience of the team. Also, speak about your hiring plans.
- Financial plan : how much profit and revenue do you expect in the next 5 years? When will you reach the break-even point and start making profits? You can include here a chart depicting your key financials statements
- Funding ask : what loan/investment/grant are you seeking? How much do you need? How long will this last?
Restaurant Business Plan + Financial model
30+ slides Business plan template
5-year Excel Financial model
2. Restaurant Business Overview
This is the section where you will provide details about your restaurant and the chosen business model. You must address some important questions that lenders and/or investors generally ask .
Here is a quick list of some of those questions you must address:
- What is the rationale behind you opening this type of restaurant today?
- What’s the restaurant’s location and why did you select that location?
- Why did you select the type of restaurant you want to open?
- What will be the products and services you will offer?
- What will be your pricing strategy and why?
- What will be your opening days / hours?
- How many customers can you serve at once (capacity)?
- What is the surface of your restaurant? How is the restaurant designed (incl. dining rooms and kitchen area)?
- What will be the legal structure of your company?
a) History of the Project
Any business must have two components:
- Passion & experience of the business owner
- Rationale behind starting this type of business today
Passion & experience
You may or may not have prior experience. If you have experience, speak about it and how it will help you to run your business. For instance, you may have been a restaurant manager in a popular restaurant for 6 years, and now you want to start your own restaurant and use your knowledge to run it more efficiently.
However, if you don’t already have experience, that’s fine. You must demonstrate your passion and some industry knowledge (you may have conducted thorough research).
What is your restaurant’s mission?
For example, there may not be any fine dining restaurant in your area where wealthy residents or tourists can enjoy an upscale meal experience in a sophisticated and elegant environment.
But that’s not all: your market must be suitable for your business to thrive.
For instance, if you are planning to open a fine dining restaurant in a low-income area, it is probably not going to attract many customers. Similarly, if the population of the target market has a high percentage of people preferring takeaway/delivery food options because of their busy lifestyle, a fine dining restaurant may not be a good idea.
b) Business Model
This sub-section of the Business Overview will explain your business model. Describe the following points briefly:
- Will you buy an existing restaurant and do some remodeling, or will you start a new restaurant and design it from scratch?
- Will you buy a franchise or do you plan to open an independent restaurant instead?
- The type of restaurant you want to open and why
What are the different types of restaurants?
There are multiple types of restaurants. Some of them that you may consider include, but are not limited to:
- Fine Dining : They provide upscale meal experience with several courses. The atmosphere is sophisticated and classy. They can be franchises or individually owned. Of course, they are quite expensive.
- Casual Dining : This type of restaurants serve customers at their tables and the food prices are moderate. The atmosphere is not very sophisticated. Though the décor is often unique, it can be based on the type of food a restaurant serves.
- Fast Casual : These restaurants will make your food available quickly, but the food is healthier than fast food. Also, food is cheaper than casual dining. They have a counter service (you must collect food from the counter) and the décor is more contemporary.
- Ghost Kitchens : ghost kitchens (or “dark kitchen”) restaurants do not have a storefront, a dining room, signage, or décor. They operate using food delivery partners and take orders through online ordering or phone ordering.
- Fast Food : Think of Taco Bell , KFC, Burger King, etc. The food is relatively cheap and is served quickly. Food ingredients are usually preheated or precooked, and food delivery happens over the counter or via a drive-through window.
- Buffet Style : These restaurants are similar to the Family Style restaurants but with a fundamental difference. People get to select from a selection of food that are made available against a fixed price. However, customers need to serve themselves and they are allowed to return to the buffet for as many times as they want.
c) Products & Services
Of course, the products you will offer in your restaurant will depend on the type of restaurant you are opening. A Buffet Style restaurant, for example, usually prefer specialty cuisines like Indian, pizza, home cooking, Chinese, etc. Similarly, if you are opting for a Diner, you will most likely offer fried foods (fish & chicken), breakfast items, burgers, etc. at a low cost.
It is a good idea to give a list of food and drinks that you want to sell. Depending on the scale of your operations, you may have too many menu items. It is not possible to list every item on your menu, but make sure that you are listing the most important ones. If you specialize in one or a few specific dishes, mention that, too.
d) Pricing Strategy
In this sub-section, you must explain the pricing strategy of your restaurant. If you have multiple competitors (in the same niche) in the vicinity, you cannot have huge pricing variation, especially for the similar food items. Pricing will, of course, depend on the type of restaurant you are opening, and the food items you are offering.
For example, if you are sourcing the raw materials only from organic farms that do not use fertilizers and pesticides, your menu items will have a higher price tag.
Similarly, you cannot expect to charge expensive Fine Dining-like prices if you are opening a Casual Dining restaurant instead.
Create a pricing table and ensure to provide an average price range for your products. You don’t need to provide exact pricing for each product. Use price ranges instead.
Offering a pricing table is important because your pricing strategy will allow investors to tie your pricing strategy with your financial projections .
e) Legal Structure
Finally, your business overview section should specify what type of business structure you want. Is this a corporation or a partnership (LLC)? Who are the investors? How much equity percentage do they own? Is there a Board of Directors? If so, whom? Do they have experience in the industry?
3. Restaurant Market Overview
A complete understanding of the market where you want to operate is important for the success of your business.
For example, if your intentions are to open a classy Fine Dining restaurant in a low-income area, you will not attract enough customers. Similarly, if you want to open a fast-food restaurant in a place where family dining is more popular, it will be a disaster.
Therefore, you must cover here 3 important areas:
- Market size & growth : how big is the restaurant industry in your area? What is its growth rate (or decline rate) and what are the factors contributing to its growth or decline?
- Competition overview : how many competitors are there? How do they compare vs. your business? How can you differentiate yourself from them?
- Customer analysis: who is your target audience? What type of restaurants do they prefer? How regularly do they visit restaurants for dining? What type of food do they prefer? How much do they spend at restaurants on average?
a) Restaurant Industry Status Quo
How big is the restaurant industry in the us.
According to Finance Online , there were over 1 million restaurants (all types combined) in the US in 2021. The industry recovered post a 60% drop in sales in April 2020 due to the pandemic, and recorded an annualised market size of over $1 trillion dollars in July 2022 ($1,033 billion)..!
How big is the restaurant industry in your area?
Once you provide the overall picture of the US, divert your attention to the area where you want to operate. It might not be possible to find region or area-specific studies, and hence, you must estimate the market size .
For example, if there are 1,000,000 restaurants in the country with total annual revenue of $1 trillion, the average annual revenue for each establishment is around $1 million.
Therefore, if the area where you want to open your restaurant has 30 restaurants, you can safely assume that the restaurant industry in your area is worth approximately $30 million.
How fast is the restaurant industry growing in the area?
You must show the expected growth rate of the restaurant industry in your area. This information may not be available via online research papers. However, assessing the growth rate will not be difficult as you can use metrics such as the number of competitors in your area.
For instance, if there were 25 restaurants in 2018 and 30 restaurants in 2022, the average annual growth rate would be 5%.
What are the current restaurant market trends in your area?
It is vital to understand the trends of the restaurant industry in your area. Understanding trends will allow you to devise marketing strategies.
Understanding trends won’t be easy. You must conduct research and talk with your target audience. Additionally, you must also study your competitors to understand their target audience, the products they sell, etc.
Some common questions you may ask the target audience include:
- What type of restaurants do they prefer?
- At what time of the day do they prefer to visit a restaurant (breakfast, lunch, dinner)?
- How frequently do they visit restaurants?
- What type of foods do they usually order?
You can ask as many questions as you need to understand the evolving trends.
b) Competition Overview
Studying your competitors’ business models is vital. You need to understand what makes them successful or why they fail. A clear understanding of their food offerings, marketing strategies, etc., will allow you to provide a better service.
If your competitors are offering nearly the same products & services, then what is their market share and how do they market their products & services to attract new customers?
It is always a good idea to do some research (if necessary, physically visit your competitors without revealing your business intentions) and create a comparative table summarizing their product & service offerings, marketing strategies, target audience, etc.
Here is a sample table that you can use:
The table you will create will depend on what information you need and want to include based on your proposed business model.
Restaurant SWOT Analysis
Try to provide a SWOT analysis. It must be crisp and highly focused. SWOT stands for Strength, Weakness, Opportunities, and Threats.
Here is a sample that you can use as a reference:
- Strength: 8 years of senior manager experience in a reputed Michelin Star Fine Dining restaurant operated & owned by a renowned chef and a master’s degree in Hospitality management, experienced senior chef with 22 years of experience
- Weakness: Startup cost, zero reputation
- Opportunities: An affluent neighborhood with a rising demand for fine dining establishments, only one fine dining restaurant in the 3-mile radius
- Threats: Increasing cost of raw materials because of geo-political turmoil restricting international trade routes
A clear understanding of your strengths and weakness along with opportunities and threats in the real market can help you to design your marketing strategy. It also helps potential investors to assess the risk and reward profile of your business.
c) Customer Analysis
This is the sub-section where you will provide a detailed analysis of your target audience.
Some important points that you must include in your customer analysis include:
- Age and gender distribution (you can get local demographic data from census.gov )
- Per capita expenditure on dining
- Frequency of restaurant visits
- Average monthly income and disposable income
- Average bill size per visit
- Average yearly or monthly spending on food at restaurants
- Type of restaurants preferred
- The expected price range for food
- Inclination towards loyalty programs & free perks
- Things they dislike about existing restaurants and what they expect to be improved
You can add as many data points as required to validate your business decision. The idea here is to display your deep understanding of the target audience and their needs, preferences, and expectations. This knowledge can help you to tailor your products & services to attract new customers and increase sales .
4. Sales & Marketing Strategy
This is the segment where you outline your customer acquisition strategy. Try to answer the following questions:
- What is your USP?
- What are the different marketing strategies you will use?
- How do you intend to track the success of your marketing strategy?
- What is your CAC or customer acquisition cost ?
- What is your marketing budget?
- What introductory promos and offers do you intend to provide for attracting new customers?
Let’s expand a bit on a few questions below:
What marketing channels do restaurants use?
A few marketing channels that restaurants typically use are:
- Word-of-mouth, recommendations,
- Local listing & reviews (e.g. Google reviews)
- Online booking platforms (e.g. TheFork , Opentable , etc.)
- Influencer marketing
- Print media, etc.
It is not necessary to use all channels. You can start by focusing on a few of them and include other marketing strategies later instead.
What is your unique selling proposition?
In other words, how do you differentiate yourself vs. competitors? This is very important as you might need to win customers from competitors.
A few examples of USPs can be:
- Organic raw materials : we source organic farm fresh raw materials from local farmers
- Authentic Indian food : prepared by a Michelin Star chef from India
- Family run restaurant : run by a family, helping families connect over delicious food
- Price : affordable food & menu for the quality vs. competitors
- Location : the restaurant is located in a busy street, thereby attracting many customers who can easily glance over the menu
- Uniqueness : you may be the only tapas-style restaurant around, in an area where people are fond of this type of restaurant
5. Management & People
You must address 2 things here:
- The management team and their experience / track record
- The organizational structure : different team members and who reports to whom?
Small businesses often fail because of managerial weaknesses. Thus, having a strong management team is vital. Highlight the experience and education of senior managers that you intend to hire to oversee your restaurant business.
Describe their duties, responsibilities, and roles. Also, highlight their previous experience and explain how they succeeded in their previous roles.
It is also important that you explain how their experiences and qualifications help you in implementing the restaurant you are proposing. If they have specialized training, achievement, and experience (such as a degree in hospitality management, 3 Michelin stars, experience in developing menus for 5-star hotels, etc.), add that information.
b) Organization Structure
Even if you haven’t already hired a restaurant manager, server, chef, head cook, busser, cashier, bartenders, and other relevant staff members, you must provide here a chart of the organizational structure defining the hierarchy of reporting.
6. Financial Plan
The financial plan is perhaps, with the executive summary, the most important section of any business plan for a restaurant.
Indeed, a solid financial plan tells lenders that your business is viable and can repay the loan you need from them. If you’re looking to raise equity from private investors, a solid financial plan will prove them your restaurant is an attractive investment.
There should be 2 sections to your financial plan section:
- The startup costs of your project (if you plan to start a new restaurant, renovate your restaurant, etc.)
- The 5-year financial projections
a) Startup Costs
Before we expand on 5-year financial projections in the following section, it’s always best practice to start with listing the startup costs of your restaurant . For a restaurant, startup costs are all the expenses you incur before you open your restaurant and start making sales. These expenses typically are:
- The leasing deposit for the space (if you rent) or to buy the real estate (if you buy)
- Renovations and improvements
- Equipment & appliances
- Furniture & tableware
Of course, the startup costs depend on a number of factors, like the size of your restaurant, its location, the facilities, the menu, etc.
On average, it costs $484,000 to $685,000 to open a casual restaurant with 150 seats (2,500 sq. ft.) in the US.
Note that these costs are for illustrative purposes and may not be fully relevant for your business. For more information on how much it costs to open and run a restaurant, read our article here .
b) Financial Projections
In addition to startup costs, you will now need to build a solid 5-year financial model for your restaurant.
Your financial projections should be built using a spreadsheet (e.g. Excel or Google Sheets) and presented in the form of tables and charts in the business plan of your restaurant.
As usual, keep it concise here and save details (for example detailed financial statements, financial metrics, key assumptions used for the projections) for the appendix instead.
Your financial projections should answer at least the following questions:
- How much revenue do you expect to generate over the next 5 years?
- When do you expect to break even ?
- How much cash will you burn until you get there?
- What’s the impact of a change in pricing (say 15%) on your margins?
- What is your average customer acquisition cost?
You should include here your 3 financial statements (income statement, balance sheet and cash flow statement). This means you must forecast:
- The number of covers (customers or orders) over time ;
- Your expected revenue ;
- Operating costs to run the business ;
- Any other cash flow items (e.g. capex, debt repayment, etc.).
When projecting your revenue, make sure to sensitize pricing, cost of raw materials (food supplies) and your sales volume. Indeed, a small change in these assumptions may have a significant impact on your revenues and profits.
7. Use of Funds
This is the last section of the business plan of your restaurant. Now that we have explained what your restaurant’s business model and concept are, what is your menu, your marketing strategy, etc., this section must now answer the following questions:
- How much funding do you need ?
- What financial instrument(s) do you need: is this equity or debt, or even a free-money public grant?
- How long will this funding last?
- Where else does the money come from? If you apply for a SBA loan for example, where does the other part of the investment come from (your own capital, private investors?)
If you raise debt:
- What percentage of the total funding the loan represents?
- What is the corresponding Debt Service Coverage Ratio ?
If you raise equity
- What percentage ownership are you selling as part of this funding round?
- What is the corresponding valuation of your business?
Use of Funds
Any restaurant business plan should include a clear use of funds section. This is where you explain how the money will be spent.
Will you spend most of the loan / investment in paying your employees’ salaries? Or will it cover mostly the cost for the lease deposit and the renovation?
Those are very important questions you should be able to answer in the blink of an eye. Don’t worry, this should come straight from your financial projections. If you’ve built solid projections like in our restaurant financial model template , you won’t have any issues answering these questions.
For the use of funds, we also recommend using a pie chart like the one we have in our financial model template where we outline the main expenses categories as shown below.
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Restaurant Business Plan
You have cracked the recipe for good food & great ambiance and are planning to start a restaurant, fantastic!
Whether starting a cozy corner cafe, a theme-based fine dining restaurant, or growing an existing one, you will need a restaurant business plan as a roadmap for your business success.
But writing a business plan is complex, isn’t it? That is why we are here with our comprehensive restaurant business plan template to help you in writing yours.
- Highlight the concept of the restaurant along with the ambiance, types of cuisines, customer base, and USPs of the restaurant in the plan.
- Utilize tools for SWOT analysis to assess your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats for making informed decisions.
- Craft an impactful executive summary that outlines your restaurant’s concept, marketing approach, financial outlook, and team expertise to attract potential investors and partners.
- Conduct thorough market research to understand market trends, consumer preferences, and the needs of your target market.
- Analyze the competitive landscape, and identify direct & indirect competitors, to develop strategies that maintain your restaurant’s competitive advantage.
- To ensure efficient daily operations, provide in-depth operational plans that incorporate staffing, additional services, inventory control, and customer service.
- Create realistic financial projections for sales revenue, expenses, and profit forecasts while considering contingencies & emergencies.
Why is a restaurant business plan important?
Crafting a restaurant business plan is daunting but its significance cannot be underestimated. It is essential to drive your business toward success.
In the competitive atmosphere where there are 700,000+ restaurants in the USA, having a proper plan will help you get funding and better adaptability in a constantly changing business environment.
Even if funding isn’t a primary concern, a plan provides the restaurant owner or manager with clear direction on how to create actionable strategies for reaching business goals.
Your business plan will also help solidify the viability of the restaurant’s idea and concept.
In short, think of it as a guide for running all the aspects of the business smoothly.
How to write a restaurant business plan: Step-by-Step Guide
Since we are talking about a restaurant business plan; let us walk you through this restaurant business plan outline step-by-step without any delay:
1. Executive summary
An executive summary is the first section and the most significant section of any business plan. It captures the essence of your whole plan summarizing it for a quick understanding of your business.
Think of it as a sneak peek for the readers that draws their attention to the entire restaurant business plan.
You should start your summary with a compelling introduction with the name of your restaurant. It should also focus on the essence of your restaurant concept.
Give a brief overview of your unique selling points, emphasizing what makes your restaurant special. It might be the signature dishes, innovative ambiance, prime location, or some new cuisine experience.
Apart from the above essential points, your executive summary should include:
- Mission statement
- Vision statement
- Execution structure
- Potential costs
- Expected return on investment
Many readers will read the executive summary before making a judgment, so if this is all they read, make every word count.
Also, SBA advises to include financial projections in your executive summary if you’re using your business plan to request funding.
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2. Company Overview
Company overview is a part where you fully introduce your restaurant business including legal business structure, location, and your restaurant’s proposed concept.
Here you have the liberty to be a little more creative in describing your restaurant in the whole business plan.
Here are some points to incorporate in the company overview:
- Detailed vision and mission statement
- Type of restaurant (fine dining, small restaurant, bistro, cafe, etc.)
- Legal business structure
- Service style
- History and background of the restaurant (if existing)
- Owners’ names and qualifications
- Cusinies & menu highlights
- Restaurant size and seating capacity
- Operating hours & meal plans
- Related service availability (delivery, catering, etc)
Mainly emphasize the chosen location because easily accessible locations with high foot traffic will attract more walk-in customers. And if you haven’t decided on a specific location yet, then mention the type of place you are looking for to give an idea about it to your readers.
Besides, mention the short-term and long-term goals of your restaurant business in the later part of the company description. Along with that mention regional industry trends and your USPs.
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3. Market analysis
The market analysis section provides you with a clearer picture of your target market, competitors, and industry trends.
Based on the above details, one can make informed decisions while creating strategies. Therefore, make this section precise and concise to understand.
Here are some steps to follow to write an engaging market analysis section of the restaurant business plan:
- Define your customer base: Identify and describe whom you are going to serve. Make a consumer base after considering the demographics, location, and concept of your restaurant.
- Competitive analysis: List out the names of other restaurants in your location and do the SWOT analysis. You can get the competitive advantage of your restaurant this way.
- Market trends: Discuss any shift in consumer behavior like healthy choices, an increase in vegan food consumption, or technological breakthroughs that might affect your restaurant.
Consider conducting market research, TAM-SAM-SOM analysis , and SWOT analysis to get insights for this section.
Remember, this section helps your readers and potential investors understand your target market, restaurant market overview, market size, and growth potential, so make sure you play your cards right.
4. Sample Menu
The most vital step in launching your restaurant business is the menu. A well-curated menu design will sell itself for your restaurant. Even if you are a new restaurant, then present the sample menu with the name and logo of your restaurant on it.
The menu will showcase all the unique offerings your direct competitors might not provide. Not just the list of cuisines but the pricing is also crucial. This way potential investors and readers can understand your restaurant’s target price point.
Plus your menu should be in sync with target customers; for example, a restaurant near the university should contain more beverages and delicious food options for brunch as students prefer those things more.
Consider your menu as a part of branding, choose the same theme for the menu as for the restaurant.
5. Restaurant Design
Restaurant design is the part where you can show your restaurant concept to potential investors and readers practically. Moreover, create a mood board to explain things smoothly.
Utilize this section to show the uniqueness of your restaurant, and how it is different from competitors.
Explain how your design represents your restaurant’s branding and visual identity. Furthermore, mention how your target market will enjoy and appreciate the ambiance you plan to provide.
Note that restaurant design is one of the key elements to running a successful restaurant, so match the theme and cuisines accordingly.
In this section, you also have to provide a detailed description of how many seats are going to be there along with the floor plan of your restaurant.
6. Management Team
As the name suggests, the management team section of your restaurant’s business plan introduces restaurant owners, key executives, and the management team. It also incorporates the experience, qualification, and restaurant industry knowledge of every individual who is on the team.
A strong management team section can be essential to weigh authority and help potential investors be confident about your restaurant’s idea and vision.
You might consider including the following information in the management team section:
- Business owner or founder’s information
- Executive chef and culinary team
- Front-of-house manager
- Operations and back-of-house team
- The organizational structure of the team
Showcase how each member fits and what roles & responsibilities they will play. You should include a resume-styled summary for each person in the restaurant’s management section.
7. Operations Plan
The operations plan section outlines the daily business processes and activities centered on achieving the restaurant dream and objectives described in the rest of the plan.
A detailed operations plan helps you and your team define your responsibilities, daily tasks, and short-term goals you need to achieve, keeping track of your long-term objective.
Here are a few key elements to include in your operations plan section:
- Staffing and training
- Operating hours
- Operational process
- Tools and equipment
- Inventory control
- Technology and software
- Quality control measures
- Customer service policies
Remember it should incorporate all important daily tasks. Also, an operations plan is a living document, you can change it often according to the change in the dynamics of the work.
Read More: The Ultimate Guide to Restaurant Operations Planning
8. Marketing Plan
Even with great food, prices, and ambiance, you won’t attract enough diners without marketing.
Thus, a well-crafted restaurant marketing plan is necessary to spread awareness and build a strong brand presence.
The marketing plan can help you streamline your marketing efforts and create impactful and effective marketing campaigns while keeping track of the projected budget and maximizing return on investment.
Hence, this is the section in which you give an idea to your potential investors about how you will acquire new customers and retain existing ones. This section should include:
- Target market and their dining habits
- Branding and positioning
- Marketing strategies (website, social media accounts, etc.)
- Marketing Calendar
- USPs of your restaurant (unique ambiance, amiable staff, new cuisines in the local area)
- Your marketing goals
- Customer retention strategies (loyalty program, giving coupons or discounts on bulk orders or events)
Even if you are going to hire a PR agency for marketing, then mention it and the reason why you chose them.
After taking care of marketing, let us move further to finances.
Read More: Step-by-Step Guide to Restaurant Marketing Plan
9. Financial Plan
The financial plan is the most crucial and demanding section of any business plan. It is one of the deciding factors for potential investors, banks, or any financial institute to invest in your restaurant business.
This section of your plan details your restaurant’s financial information and how it will reach its financial goals or how much revenue potential it has.
Here are key components and statements that you should include in your financial plan section:
- Pro forma profit and loss statement
- Break-even analysis
- Balance sheet
- Sales forecast
- Detailed cost analysis
- Cash flow projections
- Business ratios
- Funding request
- Tax considerations
- Exit strategy
Before you create financial projections, know how many seats the restaurant will have and what services you plan to provide. This will help you in making realistic financial projections if you are going to start a new business.
Also, if you are asking for funding, then mention where you will utilize your funds.
We hope that this sample restaurant business plan will provide you with an idea for writing a successful plan.
Restaurant Industry Highlights 2023
- Growth forecast : National Restaurant Association predicted US restaurant sales to reach $898 billion in 2022 which would further grow by 4% yearly to reach $1.2 trillion by 2030.
- Technology is everywhere : Automation is helping staff maximize their efficiency by handling orders, deliveries, and communication effectively.
- Sustainability & ethical sourcing : Eco-friendly practices such as minimizing food waste, avoiding single-use plastics, and ethical plus local sourcing are encouraged by customers.
- Delivery is the new deal : People prefer deliveries over dining out as they are time-saving. So, there is an incline in the number of delivery apps and delivery services providing restaurants.
- Kiosks are the preference : The number of people who prefer ordering and paying through kiosks is increasing due to the convenience.
How to Refine & Present a Restaurant Business Plan
Once you have written your entire business plan, it is time to read and re-read it and make it error-free. You have to be confident about every aspect of the plan before you present it in front of your audience.
Moreover, alter your plan to suit different audiences to enhance your communication. For instance, keep your plan professional and include all the growth potential, profitability, and ROI data when you present your restaurant business plan for seeking funding.
Also, when you present your restaurant business plan to potential partners or vendors, emphasize collaboration benefits and how it can help in their individual growth.
Apart from the above points, make sure your plan has various engaging visuals, interactive elements, and enhanced storytelling to present all the data interestingly. Thus, make a digital presentation of your plan to incorporate all the above things clutter-free.
Once you are confident, it is time to email your plan to the people already on your mind. And give a pat to yourself for finally taking that step.
Download a sample business plan for a restaurant
Ready to kick-start your business plan writing process? And not sure where to start? Here you go, download our free restaurant business plan pdf , and start writing.
This intuitive, modern, and investment-ready template is designed specifically for restaurants. It includes step-by-step instructions & examples to help in creating your own restaurant business plan.
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Related Restaurant Resources
- Restaurant Marketing Plan
- Restaurant Financial Plan
- Restaurant Operations Plan
- Restaurant Industry Trends
Discover how Upmetrics can help you write a business plan
With Upmetrics, you will receive step-by-step guidance, customizable templates, 400+ sample business plans , and AI assistance to streamline your business planning process.
In fact, if you are not adept with finances, the financial forecasting tool Upmetrics provides will help you create realistic financial forecasts for 3 or more years.
Whether you’re starting a new venture or looking to grow one, Upmetrics offers the resources and insights you need to develop a successful & professional business plan that aligns with your goals.
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Frequently asked questions, why do you need a restaurant business plan.
A solid business plan is an essential tool for anyone looking to start or run a successful restaurant business. It helps to get clarity in your business, raise money, and identify potential challenges while starting and growing your business.
How to get funding for your restaurant business?
There are several ways to get funding for your restaurant business, but self-funding is one of the most efficient and speedy funding options. Other options for funding are:
- Bank loan – You may apply for a loan in government or private banks.
- Small Business Administration (SBA) loan – SBA loans and schemes are available at affordable interest rates, so check the eligibility criteria before applying for it.
- Crowdfunding – The process of supporting a project or business by getting a lot of people to invest in your business, usually online.
- Angel investors – Getting funds from angel investors is one of the most sought startup options.
What is the easiest way to write your restaurant business plan?
A lot of research is necessary for writing a business plan, but you can write your plan most efficiently with the help of restaurant business plan samples and edit it as per your need. You can also quickly finish your plan in just a few hours or less with the help of our business plan software .
Can a good restaurant business plan help me secure funding?
Indeed. A well-crafted restaurant business plan will help your investors better understand your business domain, market trends, strategies, business financials, and growth potential—helping them make better financial decisions.
What's the importance of a marketing strategy in a restaurant business plan?
Marketing strategy is a key component of your restaurant business plan. Whether it is about achieving goals or helping your investors understand the return on investment—an impactful marketing strategy is the way to do it!
Here are a few pointers to help you understand the importance of having a marketing strategy:
- It provides your business an edge over your competitors.
- It helps investors better understand your business and growth potential.
- It helps you develop products with the best profit potential.
- It helps you set accurate pricing for your products or services.
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Vinay Kevadiya is the founder and CEO of Upmetrics, the #1 business planning software. His ultimate goal with Upmetrics is to revolutionize how entrepreneurs create, manage, and execute their business plans. He enjoys sharing his insights on business planning and other relevant topics through his articles and blog posts. Read more
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Updated January 09, 2023
A restaurant business plan defines the concept, operational strategy, and business goals of a restaurant. The plan can serve as both a blueprint for day-to-day internal activities and a pitch for potential funding sources. Typically, a restaurant business plan should include:
- Mission and vision
- Legal structure
- Hours of operation
- Management structure and key personnel
- Industry analysis and competitor research
- Marketing strategy
- Funding needs and financial projections
Maintaining an updated business plan benefits restaurants by formalizing the business identity, outlining a roadmap for the future, and keeping all interested parties aligned.
Restaurant Business Plans
Did you know each of these plans was created in LivePlan? Learn More
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Bed And Breakfast Business Plan
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Bed and Breakfast Inn Business Plan
The Magnolia Inn is a beautiful facility that sits atop a bluff over looking the Pacific Ocean in scenic Half Moon Bay California.
Bowling Entertainment Center Business Plan
Kiln Creek Bowling Center is a start-up bowling alley and recreation center in Virginia.
Cafe Bistro Coffeehouse Business Plan
The Watertower Cafe is a start-up restaurant/bistro/coffeehouse, offering food, coffee, and music; it is located in Atlanta.
Deli Restaurant Business Plan
The New World Delicatessen will be an upscale deli specializing in a combination of fast hot or cold sandwiches and salads plus specific recipes focusing on the Pacific Northwest cuisine.
Ethnic Food Restaurant Business Plan
Zara Restaurant and Lounge is a new restaurant that offers consistently high quality food, menu variety, and a unique atmosphere.
Fast Food Restaurant Business Plan
Fresin Fries will entice youngsters to bring their friends and family with our innovative environment, fresh-cut Belgian fries, and selection of unique signature dipping sauces.
Fine Dining Restaurant Business Plan
Gabri’s Lounge & Restaurant will be the perfect place to stop in for a bite to eat, for a drink or for a small business meeting.
Franchise Sandwich Shop Business Plan
Franchise Sub Shop is a national franchise sub sandwich quick-service restaurant.
Healthy Restaurant Business Plan
Kona-Q is a fast-casual restaurant, serving fast, fresh, healthy grilled meats and vegetables.
Italian Restaurant Business Plan
The Pasta House Co. is a start-up Italian Restaurant franchise. The owners of The Pasta House Co. will acquire restaurant space in a newer shopping mall, establishing a second franchise location.
Mediterranean Restaurant Business Plan
On The Water is a start-up restaurant specializing in Mediterranean cuisine.
Mexican Restaurant Business Plan
La Salsa Fresh Mexican Grill is a franchise restaurant chain, opening its first storefront in this state. Menu items emphasize fresh ingredients.
Movie Theater Restaurant Business Plan
Second Run Pizza renovated an old theater, creating a venue where patrons can enjoy a pizza dinner while viewing second run movies.
Organic Restaurant Business Plan
Studio67 is a medium-sized restaurant focusing on organic foods and an intriguing atmosphere in a prime neighborhood of Portland.
Pasta Italian Restaurant Business Plan
Sigmund's Gourmet Pasta restaurant specializes in unique and innovative pasta dishes.
Pie Restaurant Business Plan
UPer Crust Pies will specialize in meat, vegetable and fruit pies made using old-country traditional family recipes from the UP – Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.
Pizzeria Business Plan
Pizzeria del Causamali is a start-up restaurant which will fill an empty niche. Currently there are few family-dining restaurants serving the rural communities surrounding the town of Deauville, and none serve freshly made pizza.
Pizzeria Franchise Business Plan
4 Moons Pizzeria offers a comfortable, friendly ambience, with its new “Modern Pizzeria” design.
Sandwich Restaurant Business Plan
Pita Pal is a new restaurant strategically located in downtown Washington, PA, that serves fresh and healthy pita sandwiches.
Steak Buffet Restaurant Business Plan
Sagebrush Sam's will provide a unique combination of excellent food at value pricing with a fun and entertaining atmosphere.
Steak Restaurant Business Plan
Fire Fountain Grille is an upscale, casual, start-up steak restaurant that will emphasize high quality service, superb meats, special seasonings, and unique decor.
Themed Restaurant Business Plan
Full of Bologna, A Taste of North Italy is a new High Renaissance themed Italian restaurant, starting up as an anchor retail establishment in the revitalized Greensward development.
Fast Food Service Business Plan
QuickBite Express offers delicious, high-quality fast food options with a focus on speed, convenience, and affordability. Our diverse menu caters to various tastes and dietary preferences, ensuring a satisfying experience for all customers.
Fast Bites Delight offers a menu of fast, fresh, and delicious food prepared using high-quality ingredients. With a diverse range of options, customers can enjoy satisfying meals on the go without compromising on taste or nutritional value.
Small Restaurant Business Plan
Bistro Locale offers an intimate and authentic dining experience by serving fresh, seasonal dishes inspired by local flavors and ingredients. With its warm, inviting atmosphere and exceptional customer service, it provides a unique destination for food lovers seeking a local, high-quality dining experience.
You’re a professional chef in the making. You have delicious recipes, a killer drink menu, and even a delicious secret sauce all ready to go, but what about your business plan? You can have the best food and dining experience in the world, but without a good business plan in place, your restaurant may be out of business before you ever fire up the oven.
Check out our library of sample restaurant business plans to be sure you have everything in order to confidently take your first order.
If you’re looking to develop a more modern business plan, we recommend you try LivePlan . It contains the same templates and information you see here, but with additional guidance to help you develop the perfect plan.
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How to Write a Fine Dining Restaurant Business Plan
A fine dining restaurant business plan is a comprehensive document that details the concept, market analysis, unique culinary offerings, service protocols, financial planning, and marketing strategies geared around starting, and most importantly, sustaining a high-end dining establishment.
In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through the process of crafting a detailed business plan tailored to the unique demands of a fine dining restaurant.
Why you need a fine dining business plan
A fine dining business plan is crucial for laying the groundwork for the restaurant, providing a detailed roadmap for strategic planning, financial management, and operational guidelines.
To secure funding it is vital to demonstrate the business’s viability to investors and lenders. The plan also supports the navigation of regulatory landscapes, licensing laws, informs targeted marketing strategies, and helps in identifying risks and opportunities within the market.
Furthermore, it outlines the structure for staffing and future growth, ensuring that the restaurant can deliver an exceptional dining experience and thrive in a competitive industry.
According to a survey by RestaurantOwner.com , restaurants with a written business plan had over a 30% chance of success than those without a plan.
Sections in a fine dining restaurant business plan
An executive summary for a fine-dining restaurant business plan is a concise overview that encapsulates the restaurant's vision, concept, market analysis, unique selling points, financial highlights, and strategic goals.
It's designed to grab an investor's attention and summarize the most compelling aspects of the proposed venture in a clear and engaging manner.
The executive summary contains:
- Business concept
- Vision and mission statements
- Brief overview of the restaurant’s theme and cuisine
- High-level financial information and projections
- Overview of funding requirements
Example of fine-dining restaurant executive summary
The outlook is bright for Kings District in Park City, especially the Lakeview Area. This district is witnessing the rise of numerous upscale commercial and residential projects. Nearby, in the Riverside District, a modern mixed-use complex is progressing rapidly.
Together, these developments will introduce over 150,000 sq. feet of commercial space and more than 1000 homes, with sales ranging from $200,000 to $500,000 and rentals from $1000 to $2500 monthly. These projects are set to boost Lakeview’s economy throughout the year.
Yet, despite the anticipated population growth and economic boost, the area lacks a welcoming spot for quality dining. Tempo Dining and Lounge will fill this gap, providing a 50-seat fine-dining restaurant and a 20-seat lounge area. The establishment will offer a menu blending American-Italian cuisine with Moroccan touches.
Tempo Dining and Lounge will be situated in the thriving Lakeview sector of Park City, with views of the sea and Green Meadows Park along the Grand Isle Parkway.
With an elegant lounge and a warm dining area adorned with fine furnishings and decor, the lounge will feature classic love seats and plush leather couches. A softly lit bar in the lounge corner will serve timeless drinks, making Tempo the ideal venue for casual drinks, meals, or small business gatherings.
Remember, what's key here is appealing to investors. They'll be looking for numbers and market opportunity as much as how good the concept is.
The company overview section pairs with the executive summary to give a snapshot of what the business plan for our fine dining restaurant covers. Think of it as the nuts and bolts that hold the grand vision together.
Here, we lay out the concept of our fine dining restaurant, the unique dining experience we aim to offer, and the signature dishes that'll be the talk of the town. It’s where we detail the ownership setup and how potential investors fit into the picture.
This part is crucial—it’s about who’s steering the ship and the crew they’ll need to hire to deliver impeccable service. We'll talk about our sources for the freshest ingredients and our approach to creating an unmatched ambiance. Plus, we'll touch on the all-important financials, giving a peek at the expected financial health of the restaurant.
Conducting a thorough market analysis is indispensable. Start by defining your target demographic, including their income levels, dining preferences, and spending habits.
Analyze competitors in your vicinity, pinpointing their strengths and weaknesses. Assess the industry trends, such as the growing emphasis on organic ingredients or experiential dining. This section must demonstrate a clear understanding of the market dynamics and how your restaurant will position itself within that competitive landscape.
Example of a fine dining restaurant market analysis
Market Overview: The fine dining landscape in Downtown Gourmetville has expanded by 4% this year. With a local population of 500,000 and a gap in high-end culinary options, there’s an unmet demand for luxury dining experiences.
Target Market: 'The Shed' targets individuals aged 35 to 65 with high disposable incomes, a taste for sophisticated dining, and interest in culinary trends. Secondary targets are millennials seeking elevated dining for celebrations.
Competitive Landscape: The area hosts five upscale restaurants, each with a niche offering. 'The Shed' will enter this arena with a unique proposition: a seasonal menu with ingredients sourced from local organic farms.
Demand and Growth Potential: Current trends show a 30% customer interest in new fine dining options, while local economic forecasts suggest a steady increase in luxury expenditure.
A Statista survey found that 30% of restaurant operators felt that offering new or innovative services was a necessary change for survival, underlining the flexibility that a well-thought-out business plan can provide.
A concept overview for a fine dining restaurant is a succinct description that outlines the restaurant’s unique vision, ambiance, cuisine style, service level, and overall dining experience it aims to provide its patrons, distinguishing it from competitors and setting the expectations for its target clientele.
Need some inspiration and guidance for how to think about your concept? check out restaurant expert Ben Leventhal's on post on the Unifying Theory of Restaurants.
Menu and Culinary Experience
The soul of a fine dining restaurant lies in its menu and the culinary experience it promises. Provide a sample menu that reflects your restaurant’s concept and pricing strategy.
Discuss the sourcing of ingredients, the culinary techniques to be employed, and the expertise of your chef. Explain how the menu will evolve and how you plan to keep it exciting and relevant.
Don't forget to describe the ambience and dining experience you aim to create—fine dining is as much about the environment as it is about the food.
When it comes to marketing a fine dining restaurant, creating a compelling visual brand is key. This involves working with designers to produce a logo and design theme that reflect the upscale and unique experience your restaurant promises. The imagery should connect with the restaurant's concept and promise of a luxurious dining experience.
While planning for growth and recognition is important, it's crucial to first resonate with the local diners who will become your regulars. Remember, a strong local following can give your restaurant a distinguished reputation that attracts visitors and food lovers looking for an authentic, high-quality experience.
Including initial branding ideas in the business plan will make a huge difference when it comes showing investors or others your plan. It's shows you are serious, but also gives potential investors to actually envision what the final product will look like.
Marketing and sales strategy
In a world where dining choices are abundant, an effective marketing strategy is critical. Outline your plan for building a strong brand identity through logo design, a compelling narrative, and high-quality visual imagery.
Detail how you will leverage social media, food critics, influencers, and local events to generate buzz. Include strategies for upselling premium dishes and wines, as well as plans for customer retention programs, such as exceptional guest experiences and special member events.
For fine dining restaurants how you outline your marketing strategy will likely be more important than other types of restaurants business.
We've suggested the following framework when it comes to fine dining restaurants.
1. Storytelling for fine dining restaurants
Sharing your restaurant's compelling narrative, from the chef's culinary journey to the origins of your ingredients and the inspiration behind your cuisine, engages customers seeking more than a meal but a memorable dining experience.
2. In restaurant experience
With the rise social media and especially #foodstagram, the in restaurant experience is as much digital as it is physical. Restaurant's should be keenly aware of this take action to optimize the guest experience for sharing online.
3. Customer relationship management (CRM)
In today's fast-paced environment, a high-quality and responsive CRM system is crucial for restaurants, serving as the cornerstone of effective marketing strategies and customer engagement to boost reservations and foster repeat dining experiences.
4. Customer journey - seamless digital and physical experiences
Restaurants need to recognize that the modern customer journey, shaped by digital convenience, expects a seamless transition from online browsing to making a reservation with minimal effort, and those failing to provide such ease with their restaurant software risk losing customers to competitors who do.
We suggest you add your own unique answer to these four points in your fine dining plan.
- A Guide Fine Dining Restaurant Marketing
Your operations plan should provide a clear picture of the daily running of your restaurant. Address the kitchen’s operational flow, the front-of-house service procedures, and customer service policies.
Detail the restaurant layout, the number of staff required, their roles, and the training programs you'll implement. This section should reassure readers that you understand the operational complexities of a fine dining establishment.
Introduce your management team and advisory board, emphasizing their industry experience, and expertise in fine dining.
Detail the organizational structure and the responsibilities of each team member. Include profiles of key personnel such as the General Manager, Head Chef, Sommelier, and if applicable, any notable figures within your team who will add credibility.
Social Responsibility and Sustainability
Address how your restaurant plans to engage with the community and its approach to sustainability. This might include sourcing from local producers, minimizing food waste, and implementing environmentally-friendly practices. Demonstrating a commitment to social responsibility can differentiate your restaurant and appeal to socially-conscious diners.
- 15 Restaurant Sustainability Ideas for a greener future.
In this section, offer a detailed financial plan that includes startup costs, projected income statements, cash flow statements, and balance sheets for at least the first three years.
Be realistic about your projections and provide a break-even analysis. Include various scenarios that demonstrate how your restaurant will remain profitable under different market conditions. Financial projections should be backed by data drawn from your market analysis and comparable business models.
Examples of fine dining financial projections
Need some inspiration on the type of projections to include? Use this list and pick what makes most sense for your particular concept.
- Daily Receipts: Estimating average daily customers and average spend per customer.
- Seasonal Fluctuations: Adjusting for expected busy and slow periods based on trends or local events.
- Cost of Goods Sold (COGS): Projecting the costs for food and beverage inventory.
- Labor Costs: Salaries and wages for chefs, servers, managers, and other staff.
- Operating Expenses: Utilities, rent, insurance, marketing, and other ongoing costs.
- Opening Day Balance: Initial cash on hand.
- Monthly Inflows and Outflows: Expected cash coming in from sales and going out for expenses.
- Cash Reserves: Emergency funds or savings to cover unexpected costs.
- Calculating the point at which total revenue equals total expenses, indicating when the restaurant will start to generate profit.
- Profit and Loss Statement (P&L):
- Monthly Profit/Loss: Revenue minus COGS, labor, and operating expenses.
- Quarterly and Annual Summaries: Broader view of financial health over longer periods.
- Return on Investment (ROI): Analysis of the profitability of the initial investment over time.
- Best-case and Worst-case Scenarios: Projecting financial outcomes under different scenarios (e.g., an economic downturn or a surge in customer traffic).
- Learn more about restaurant metrics
The final part of your business plan should include any additional information that supports your plan. This could consist of letters of intent from suppliers, resumes of key staff, architectural renderings of the restaurant, marketing materials, and any other relevant documentation.
Wrapping it up
A well-crafted fine dining restaurant business plan is a blueprint for success, articulating a clear vision and laying out a strategic roadmap for establishing and sustaining a luxury dining experience.
It underscores the importance of understanding the market, creating a distinctive brand, delivering an exceptional culinary and dining experience, and building a strong operational and financial framework.
This plan is not merely a pitch to investors but a detailed guide that navigates the complex landscape of fine dining, ensuring that every aspect of the restaurant - from concept to kitchen, from service to sustainability - is aligned with the goal of creating an establishment that stands out in the competitive fine dining world, delights guests, and achieves long-term profitability.
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For the past 7+ years Ryan has been focused on helping restaurants succeed with digital marketing and front-of-house operations. He is Director Marketing at Eat App.
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- Restaurant Business Plan
2.0 Company Description
3.0 daily operations and production, 4.0 market analysis, 5.0 marketing strategy and implementation, 6.0 organization and management, 7.0 financial plan.
1.0 Executive Summary
The Traditional Home-Style Restaurant (“THR”) will be a moderately priced 86 seat restaurant offering family style food and service. Broasted chicken, pot roast, steaks and pork chops along with classic hamburgers, wraps and generous salads are all on the menu. We will offer specialty selections including a lighter options and smaller portions for a children’s menu.
The restaurant will be family owned and operated by Jeff and Betty Wright. Together they have over 25+ collective years experience in the restaurant and catering industry.
The Wrights will be leasing a 3,400 square foot space located at West Roads Shopping Center, an existing retail center located in Benbrook, a suburb in Fort Worth, Texas. The site was previously leased as an Italian Restaurant. Although the location was previously utilized as a restaurant, the former tenant removed the majority of the furniture, fixtures and equipment which will need to be replaced. The location will also require some additional renovation to update the lavatories and increase table space in the dining area.
The décor will feature wood accented chairs with blue and white checked table cloths. Dinner style tables will be surrounded by wooden chairs with comfortable seating cushions.
Sales projections assume 1700 customers per week resulting in weekly sales of just over $19,777, or $1,028,000 annually. This equates to around $302 per square foot in sales annually which positions THR as a highly desirable concept for ownership in a table service market where $200 to $325 per square foot is considered moderately profitable and therefore a good investment. Total start up costs will be $363,000, $174,000 of which will be contributed by the owners and the remainder will be secured by a proposed bank loan.
1.1 Business Objectives
The primary objectives of the business plan for Restaurant are below:
- To be the premier home-style restaurant in western Fort Worth, Texas
- To provide quality meals at reasonable prices with exemplary service
- Achieve Cover ratios of 1.00X at each lunch and dinner serving
- To achieve Prime Cost Ratios lower than 65%
1.2 Mission Statement
Our Mission is to provide a unique and relaxing dining experience – similar to dining at home. We will strive to achieve this goal by: 1) by providing menu items incorporating quality ingredients at reasonable prices, and 2) we will be mindful of the well being of our customers and staff– treating each and everyone with dignity and respect – just like we would at our own home!
1.3 Guiding Principles
- Being Mindful of our Customers and our Staff Coinciding with our family values, we will treat both our customers and staff in a manner in which we ourselves would want to be treated (or better!).
- Gratitude “An attitude of gratitude” shown to our customers, employees and vendors – because without their input, service, labor and time, our business would not be here without them!
- Our Service Provide the warm and friendly service expected from a family-style restaurant creating an informal, comfortable environment which will make the customers satisfied and want to return again and again.
1.4 Keys to Success
- Repeat business. Every customer who comes in once should want to return, and recommend us. Word–of–mouth marketing is a powerful ally.
- Hire top notch chefs and offer training to keep the chef on top of his/her game, and pay top wages to ensure they stay with us.
- Location. Convenience is essential to us; we need to be close to our market because we are not trying to get people to travel to reach us.
- A variety of menu offerings with a “down home” theme, reasonably priced to establish credibility, but not so high as to limit customers.
The Traditional Home-Style Restaurant will be located 7950 Camp Bowie West Blvd, Fort Worth, Texas. The restaurant will be wholly owned and operated by Jeff and Betty Wright. The restaurant will serve a variety of classic home-style favorites from pot roast and mashed potatoes to patty melts and vanilla ice cream.
The restaurant will be open 7 days a week with hours as follows:
Monday 11:00 am – 9:00 pm Tuesday 11:00 am – 9:00 pm Wednesday 11:00 am – 9:00 pm Thursday 11:00 am – 9:00 pm Friday 11:00 am – 10:00 pm Saturday 11:00 am – 10:00 pm Sunday 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm
The restaurant will be owned by Jeff Wright. Jeff began his restaurant career at the age of 15 working in a quick-service foodservice operation and earned his way through college as a server and bartender. After earning his degree, he worked for a regional restaurant chain and an independent fine dining restaurant. In these organizations he held the positions of Assistant Manager and then General Manager.
Betty Wright received her Culinary Degree from the Art Institute in Dallas. After graduation she was employed by a local chain restaurant and then at a Five Star Hotel in Dallas. Betty will be employed as the Kitchen Manager.
With the high turnover of help for startup restaurants, we will rely on family to fill in where required until we are off the ground and making a profit.
2.2 Legal Form
THR will be organized as a sole proprietorship, wholly owned and operated by Jeff Wright d/b/a Traditional Home-Style Restaurant. THR is registered in the state of Texas a community property state.
2.3 Start-Up Summary
The cost to open the restaurant is $363,000. The majority of the expenses are in furniture fixtures and equipment totally $110,000. The location requires some build-out and renovation totally $50,000 and will require approximately 30 days to complete. The Wrights will sub-contract the work themselves. Costs are detailed in a later section of this restaurant business plan.
$175,000 of the start-up costs will be funded by the owners. The owner’s source of funds is a combination of liquid assets and marketable securities, primarily from their existing catering business.
2.4 Location and Facilities
The 3,400 square foot restaurant will be located in a West Roads Shopping Center, a retail strip center located in the Benbrook suburb of Fort Worth, Texas. The restaurant is located in a major traffic area, at the intersection of Camp Bowie and Cherry Road.
Benbrook, a suburb of Fort Worth, Texas, has a population of over 51,000 according to the 2010 U.S. Census Report. The residential population in the immediate area is comprised of a mixture of single family and multi-family housing. The median household income is $46,532. Major employers include Union Pacific and Bank of America.
THR will be open 7 days a week for lunch and dinner requiring multiple shifts. Jeff will write the schedules. The schedules will be written in a manner that will allow the ability to increase or decrease hourly labor according to sales volume in order to maintain a consistent labor cost control.
Proper labeling and rotation techniques, accompanied by ample storage facilities will ensure that high quality prepared product will be sufficiently available to meet the demands during peak business hours. Replenishment and ongoing preparation will continue during off peak business hours.
Jeff Wright will be responsible for ordering, receiving and maintaining sufficient inventory to meet production demands. Ordering schedules will be staggered with perishable products being ordered multiple times per week to preserve freshness. Standard grocery and supply orders will be ordered less often, according to a predetermined schedule and storage capacity.
Mr. Wright will rely on operational checklists to verify that each work shift has been properly prepared for and to insure the operational standards are followed before, during and after work shifts.
The restaurant layout, including the dining room, kitchen and serving line, has been designed for efficiency and flexibility to accommodate the fluctuation in customer traffic and peak meal periods.
Upon arrival, guests will be greeted immediately by either the assistant manager or a server and asked for the seating preference. Drink orders will be taken and guests can munch on our complimentary rolls. Once the customer’s order is taken, the order will automatically be printed to a requisition printer located in the grill area. The grill cook will use the printed ticket to keep track of orders and place the meal under the heating lamps until the order is complete. The kitchen preparation line has been designed to be operated by a minimum staff of 1 line cook and a maximum of 4 cooks. This design allows line staffing to be adjusted to the business volume. Shift changes for all staff will involve cleanup, restocking and preparation. All monies will be settled at the end of each shift. The closing shift will involve designated closing duties that will leave the restaurant clean and fully prepared for the next day.
3.2 Competitive Comparison
The US restaurant industry includes about 480,000 restaurants with combined annual revenue of about $400 billion. Major companies include Brinker International which owns Chili’s Grill & Bar) and Maggiano’s, Ruby Tuesdays McDonald’s; YUM! Brands (KFC, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell); and Darden Restaurants (Olive Garden, Red Lobster). The industry is highly fragmented: the 50 largest companies hold just 20 percent of the market.
Local competitors within a five mile radius are as follows.
- Hedarys Restaurant – This is a full service family restaurant established in 1977. The 5,000 SF restaurant run as a sole proprietorship, has 17 employees and generates $1.7 million in revenue annually. Prices are higher than THR and range from $8.00-$20 per entrée.
- Applebee’s – this is a chain restaurant offering standard fare. The food quality is average. Entrées range from $6.99 – $20.
- Chili’s – this is a chain restaurant also offering standard fare. Food choices are varied and prices range for $8-$21.
- Barbeque Ben’s – This is sole proprietorship offering primarily barbeque item. Although the food offering does not compete directly with the subject, the restaurant targets the same neighborhood families and has been operating at the single location since 1978. Entrée range from $8.99-$12.
- Cracker Barrel – located along Interstate 30, the restaurant is not located within the target market area. However due to its menu offering of home comfort food, the restaurant attracts a similar market, although Cracker Barrel’s attract the tourist business as well. Entrées range in price from $7.99-$14.
Because of their years of experience combined with their existing catering business, Jeff and Betty Wright have established relationships with qualified suppliers. These suppliers can provide reasonably priced products, delivered according to the schedule.
3.4 Management Controls
The Wrights will practice sound management procedures in order to control costs, insure quality of product and provide friendly customer service. The following systems will be used by management:
Order Guide: The restaurant will use an item specific order guide to track order history and maintain designated levels of product in inventory.
Weekly Inventory: Management will conduct a weekly inventory to determine valuation for use in the preparation of weekly profit and loss reports.
Daily Inventory Tracking: Daily inventory will be taken on specific items. Movement will be compared to sales data to ensure designated products have been properly accounted for.
3.5 Administrative Systems
With a limited staff, it is crucial that the Wrights remain current with daily cash outlay. The purchase of a POS system will immensely help them with these daily administrative reports:
Daily Cash Control. Sales and receipts recorded by the POS system will be compared to actual cash and credit card deposits on a daily basis. Acceptable over/short amounts will be limited to $5.00 per day. Discrepancies greater than $5.00 will prompt management to conduct an immediate audit to account for the difference. Monthly totals will be compared to actual P&L statements for accuracy. Cash, debit card and credit card receipts will be deposited in a deposit.
Weekly Prime Cost Report. Jeff Wright will prepare a weekly report that shows the gross profit margin after cost of goods sold and labor cost has been deducted from the sales revenue. The prime cost for this type of restaurant is expected to range from 60% to 65%. Proper control of the prime cost is the single most effective measure of management’s ability to operate the restaurant.
Purchasing Records/Payables. A part time bookkeeper will process and record invoices and credits daily. Reports detailing cash expenditures, payments by check, and accounts payable transactions will be readily available. Check disbursements will be prepared by the bookkeeper. Check signing authority for the general operating account will be given to the general manager.
Payroll Processing. Payroll checks will be issued bi-monthly. Jeff Wright will run reports from the time & attendance system, make necessary adjustments, and prepare for transfer to the payroll system. Payroll will be processed by a payroll processing service.
3.6 Future Services
THR has future plans to provide catering services for family reunions, weddings and other events desiring a “home-style” menu. This could potentially become a large portion of gross sales. The Wrights are targeting Year 2 and at that point, a sales agent would be hired to directly market the products for daily delivery or catered functions.
The restaurant industry is a large and diverse business: Restaurant-industry sales are forecast to reach $580.1 billion in 2010 – an increase of 2.5 percent over 2009. Restaurant-industry sales are projected to total $604 billion in 2011 and equal 4 percent of the U.S. gross domestic product. The overall economic impact of the restaurant industry is expected to exceed $1.7 trillion in 2011. On a typical day in America in 2010, more than 130 million people will be foodservice patrons. Sales at full service restaurants reached $184.2 billion in 2010. Sales at limited service restaurants increased to $164.8 billion in 2010, while snack and non-alcoholic-beverage bar sales rose to $24.7 billion. (National Restaurant Association).
The US restaurant industry includes about 480,000 restaurants with combined annual revenue of about $400 billion. Major companies include McDonald’s; YUM! Brands (KFC, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell); and Darden Restaurants (Olive Garden, Red Lobster). The industry is highly fragmented: the 50 largest companies hold just 20 percent of the market. (First Research).
The industry consists of full-service restaurants (FSR) and limited service eating places, which include quick-service restaurants (QSR); cafeterias; buffets; snack bars; and nonalcoholic beverage bars. (First Research)
4.1 Industry Analysis
This analysis is based on the Standard Industry Code (“SIC”) 5812: Eating and Drinking Places Establishments primarily engaged in the retail sale of prepared food and drinks for on-premise or immediate consumption. It is also based on the North American Industry Classification System (“NAICS”) 722110 – Full-Service Restaurants.
This industry comprises establishments primarily engaged in providing food services to patrons who order and are served while seated (i.e., waiter/waitress services) and pay after eating. These establishments may provide food services to patrons in combination with selling alcoholic beverages, providing carry out services, or presenting live nontheatrical entertainment.
Demographics, consumer tastes, and personal income drive demand. The profitability of individual companies can vary: while QSRs rely on efficient operations and high volume sales, FSRs rely on high-margin items and effective marketing. Large companies have advantages in purchasing, finance, and marketing. Small companies can offer superior food or service. The industry is labor-intensive. (First Research)
Wages form a significant proportion of operating costs. The existence of a statutory minimum wage in most states increases the need for players to keep other costs as lean as possible, which in turn increases the importance of suppliers. A slight complication is that in some states, foodservice employers are able to treat tips received by their staff as contributing to their wages; in such states, this policy reduces the impact of the minimum wage from the employers’ perspective. (Data Monitor)
Annual revenue per worker is less than $50,000.
Restaurants compete with companies that serve meals or prepared foods, including grocery stores, warehouse clubs, delis, and convenience stores. In addition, restaurants compete with home cooking.
Among FSRs, most establishments focus on Italian cuisine, steak, or seafood. Hamburger joints make up a majority of QSR locations, along with pizza parlors and sub sandwich shops. Industry revenue is roughly evenly split between FSRs QSRs.
In FSRs, waiters take orders, serve beverages and meals, present the check, and process payment. FSRs include casual dining (full bar); family dining (limited bar); and fine dining establishments.
Annual sales average $860,000 for FSRs.
An FSR’s square footage and the number of seats and tables dictate how many patrons it can serve (also known as table turns or covers) directly affects sales. Because the restaurant industry is highly competitive, site selection is critical: companies may consider population density, household income, competition, visibility, accessibility, and traffic.
Companies carefully manage inventory of perishable food products, such as fresh seafood and dairy goods, to reduce losses due to spoilage.
Computerized information systems can improve and link food preparation and serving operations. Touch screen ordering programs ensure accurate communication of customer orders. Timing systems monitor meal progress and can alert staff if an order is running behind schedule. Reservations programs maximize traffic flow and seating. Inventory management systems track supply levels and can help reduce waste due to spoilage. Cost accounting programs help companies determine the profitability of individual menu items. Handheld point-of-sale (POS) devices allow servers to place orders and print checks tableside, improving accuracy and reducing ordering time. Some handhelds can also print customer checks and process credit card payments. (First Research)
4.1.1 Market Size
The US restaurant industry includes about 480,000 restaurants with combined annual revenue of about $400 billion.
4.1.2 Industry Participants
Major participants include Major companies include McDonald’s; YUM! Brands (KFC, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell); and Darden Restaurants (Olive Garden, Red Lobster).
4.1.3 Main Competitors
The following restaurants are located within a five mile radius of THR:
- Applebee’s – This is a chain restaurant offering standard fare. The food quality is average. Entrées range from $6.99 – $20.
- Chili’s – This is a chain restaurant also offering standard fare. Food choices are varied and prices range for $8-$21.
- Cracker Barrel – Located along Interstate 30, the restaurant is not located within the target market area. However due to its menu offering of home comfort food, the restaurant attracts a similar market, although Cracker Barrel’s attract the tourist business as well. Entrées range in price from $7.99-$14.
4.1.4 Market Segments
THR will appeal to a broad base of consumers in both the residential and business community. The location selected for THR was chosen primarily to appeal to the growing number of households in the area.
The suburb of Benbrook located in western Forth Worth, TX has a population of over 51,000 according to the 2010 U.S. Census Report. The residential population in the immediate area is comprised of a mixture of single family and multi-family housing. The median household income is $46,532 for 2010 and estimated to be $54,646 for 2015. (US Census).
Major employers include Union Pacific Railroad and Bank of America.
(www.Business Decision. Info)
4.2 Market Tests
For the past 10 years, Jeff and Betty have been catering part-time. Their home-style menu is very popular with family reunions. More often than not, the couple gets asked to open a restaurant full-time so that patrons can return again and again.
Through Constant Contact (an online marketing program) the couple has stayed in touch with their host and hostesses, and has been asked to return to provide catering services to several repeat events. Home-Style Catering as also grown by word of mouth.
The couple also co-authors a home-style blog – attracting foodies nationwide and globally, swapping recipes, compiling the most sought after home-style comfort recipes, and identifying current trends, for example, providing expanded menus for children and for those with food allergies.
The Wrights already have a customer base through their catering business and local blog visitors. These customers will be the first to be contacted when they announce the grand opening of the brick and mortar restaurant.
4.3 Target Market Segment Strategy
Jeff and Betty Wright selected the subject area for its restaurant primarily because of its location to the very busy intersection of Cherry Street and Camp Bowie. The restaurant located in a retail strip center is located on “going home” side of Camp Bowie. This will encourage families tired from a day of work to stop in for a home cooked meal they can enjoy – without the cleanup!
Cherry Road which runs North and South is connected to the busy Interstate 30 corridor, 1/2 mile north of the shopping center. Camp Bowie which runs East and West connects to the newer western suburbs of Fort Worth.
4.3.1 Market Needs
The Benbrook area is in great need of a family style restaurant. This section of Camp Bowie is commonly referred to as “fast food alley” The selection of fast food is vast however; the area is limited on its family restaurant choices. THR’s nearest competitor, The Hedary Restaurant is located over 5 miles away from the location. Further, established in the 1970’s the Hedary Restaurant’s customers are older than the targeted family group THR focuses on.
4.3.2 Market Trends
According to the National Restaurant Association, the top 10 trends for are:
- locally sourced meats and seafood,
- locally grown produce,
- sustainability as a culinary theme,
- nutritious kids’ dishes,
- hyper-local items, (networked locally grown – like a Craigslist for restaurants)
- children’s nutrition as a culinary theme,
- sustainable seafood,
- gluten-free allergy conscious items,
- back to basics cuisine, and
- farm brand ingredients.
4.3.3 Market Growth
US consumer spending on services, an indicator of restaurant sales, rose 1.8 percent in November 2011 compared to the same month in 2010. The average US retail price for diesel and regular gas, which influences discretionary consumer spending on eating out, rose 13.1 percent and 9.3 percent respectively in the week ending January 16, 2012, compared to the same week in 2011. US tourism spending for food services and drinking places, an indicator for restaurant revenues, increased 6.1 percent in the third quarter of 2011 compared to the same period in 2010. (First Research)
Consumers believe that meals at home are healthier and higher quality than eating at restaurants. At THR, we will position ourselves as the premier home-style restaurant by preparing quality home cooked meals with simple wholesome ingredients. Jeff and Betty Wright will also provide home cooked fare that appeals to the current trends of healthier food and offer menu selections which will appeal to this group. THR will be positioned as the premier traditional home-style restaurant.
THR will position itself as the premier home-style restaurant in the Benbrook suburb of Fort Worth, Texas. We will do this by providing quality home style meals, prepared with quality ingredients at a reasonable prices. Customers will enjoy the quaint surroundings inside with the wood tables and checkered table cloths. Our restaurant will provide a relaxed atmosphere and when customers walk in they will be greeted by warm smiles and greeted just as they were arriving home.
The chains have tried to create home-style restaurants but where they have failed is in the personal aspect of the business. The POS system known as “The Expediter” used to monitor inventories and time meals has replaced one of the most important aspects of a restaurant – the friendliness of the staff! And in light of this, a handful of chain restaurants are beta testing self-pay tables!
Our customers will enjoy our standard menu fare, along with seasonal menus so that we can better take advantage of cost savings and stay current with some of the food industry trends.
At THR we plan to be the premier restaurant to work for as well. We believe that the restaurant industry is a great place to begin one’s career or pursue full-time. In fact, according to the Restaurant Association, nearly half of all adults have worked in the restaurant industry at some point during their lives, and more than one out of four adults got their first job experience in a restaurant. At THR we believe that our restaurant will provide job opportunities both for the entry level applicant was well as for the part-time worker searching for flexibly in job hours. We will pay our employees a competitive salary and believe we can do so by meticulously keeping our records, including daily review of the Prime Cost Report, and utilize Cost Accounting Systems, to prevent inventory shortfalls. We will be proactive with our employees by scheduling regular performance reviews, and provide bonuses and other incentives to motivate our staff. We will also provide our employees with the most current training programs regarding safe food handling, and worker protection. (Additional information regarding our employees is explained in Section 6.1 which follows).
THR will also remain current with current industry marketing tends. In addition to a website with our menu, map and driving directions, we will also have a Facebook page and utilize other social media such as Twitter. We will team up with Groupon and Yelp. We will offer a loyalty club and birthday club which recent reports indicate increases earnings as much as 15%.
- Prime location with easy access from Interstate 30
- Exceptional staff with the can do attitude. Combined 25 years in the restaurant industry
- Because owner has catering industry experience, he already has established a customer market and approved vendors
- Due to our small size, we believe we can provide exceptional quality by hand selecting our market specials when compared to our larger corporate competitors
- The same concept holds true in our staffing requirements, by hand selecting our employees we will strive to offer unsurpassed service when compared to our larger competitors
- Recruiting and retaining quality employees
- Tight margins will allow little wiggle room for error
- Little barriers to entry allows for immediate business opportunities
- Offer additional catering services
- Government mandates (restaurant operation, food safety, and worker protection at the federal level and health, sanitation, safety, fire at the local level)
- Rising operating costs
- Building/maintaining sales volume
- Supermarkets and convenience stores
- Consumers that believe that meals at home are healthier than those prepared in restaurants.
5.2 Strategy Pyramid
Strategy: Be the Benbrook area’s premier Home-Style Food Restaurant in Customer Satisfaction.
Tactics: First create awareness– our signage on the front of restaurant will bring customers to us and once inside, we will immediately acknowledge the customer with the warmest and most sincere greeting and begin the service process anticipating repeat customers.
Programs: Provide employee training on customer service and retention; offer ongoing training programs for employees keeping them current on industry trends and food safety. Keep track of employee’s progress through performance reviews and offer employees incentives attracting and retailing customers. Employ Mystery Shoppers. Employ the use of surveys both at the table and online.
5.3 Unique Selling Proposition (USP)
THR will be able to offer home-style meals for a reasonable price in a comfortable ‘home-like’ setting. The average check price is expected to be between $8-$15 which appears in line with industry standards below $25.00 (First Research). Because of our current expertise with vendors, and our excellent credit, we can negotiate better credit terms than say someone brand new starting a restaurant. We will also be able to keep our menu reasonably priced by offering menu items that take advantage of seasonal produce further reducing price. Finally we will keep our prices in check by meticulous monitoring of our controllable expenses – keeping close eye on our Prime Cost Report and Inventory. By initially employing family members who will work for lower and reduced wagers, for example, we can further reduce our controllable expenses.
5.4 Competitive Edge
THR’s competitive edge is in its people. We truly believe that your business is not only as good as your products (meals) but the quality of your staff as well. Our staff is a reflection of us. Initially, we intend to employ our family members who will work for lower and reduced wages. Our long term goal is to hire team members that are truly hand selected and have the same honest to goodness family values we do. And unlike our big chain competitors, because of our lean size, we can turn on a dime when economically pushed and make changes quickly allowing us to be proactive. (Whereas our corporate competitors have to adhere more closely to their company policies thus impeding their reaction time)
5.5 Marketing Strategy and Positioning
We realize the success of THR will have to be achieved by doing more that serving great food, and providing friendly service. We will utilize a restaurant marketing plan to build customer traffic. At THR we will continually strive to win more customers by being proactive rather than reactive in our marketing efforts and stay current with popular industry trends. We will achieve these goals by using the following:
- Database: We will begin our campaign by marketing to our existing database of customers. We will email fliers announcing our grand opening. We will continually update our database by providing a fishbowl for business cards in the lobby and offer a weekly or monthly drawing.
- Loyalty Program/Birthday Program. THR will offer a birthday/loyalty club proving a complimentary hamburger or chicken sandwich or wrap to the for the birthday person. A recent report from the National Restaurant Association explained how this simple technique can increase revenues as much as 15% due to repeat business.
- Our restaurant team will also be active in the local community and we plan to take an active role by participating, sponsoring, and donating to local churches, sports clubs or teams in the market area.
- We will also strive to develop rapport with local business as a quick, comfortable lunch choice. In the future, we plan on establishing a marketing campaign to call on the local business in the market area, deliver samples, and encourage them to consider our restaurant as the restaurant of choice for their next business luncheon
5.5.1 Positioning Statement
THR will be the premier home-style dining restaurant in western Fort Worth. We will offer reasonably priced meals, in a warm, relaxed and comfortable setting. We have a wide selection on our menu and also have menu options for lighter fare as well as a children’s menu. We are open 7 days a week and unlike our chain competitors, our servers won’t try to be your best friend our rush you thought your meal. Our name says it all “Traditional Home-Style Restaurant – – honest to goodness food served to you by honest to goodness people!”
5.5.2 Pricing Strategy
At THR, cost accounting is important, since the profitability of individual dishes can vary significantly and will initially determine the cost of the menu items. We will take advantage of our excellent credit terms with our suppliers and will also update our menu to take advantage of seasonality for example in local produce items. We will also closely monitor the Prime Cost Report which focuses on the controllable expenses of Cost of Goods Sold and Labor. As a new start-up we can currently control employee cost by hiring family members who will work for low and reduced wages.
5.5.3 Promotion and Advertising Strategy
- Location- The restaurant will be located in a strip center at the busy intersection of Cherry road and Camp Bowie. With easy access to Interstate 30 (less than ½ mile south) and located on the “going home side” (Western Corner) of the intersection. We will have Signage on the West Roads Shopping Plaza as well as signage over our entrance
- Word of Mouth – We already have a database of existing catering customers and will rely heavily on this method to attract and grow new business.
- Participate with Costco as Small Business of the Month – We will leave our menu, a fishbowl for business cards and a small ‘homey’ display with the retailer announcing us as new entrants in the local restaurant arena.
- Direct Mail – Bulk mailing either directly to potential customers or by including a postcard in a value-pack-type mailing.
- Event Marketing -We plan on joining our local chamber of commerce and utilizing their networking services for our grand opening
- We will stay current with industry trends and have a webpage, Facebook page and Twitter site. Our menu, map, and hours of operation will be easily accessed. In the future we may consider fax or email orders as well a phone application.
5.5.5 Marketing Programs
- Our initial marketing campaign will consist of contacting our databases clients and notifying them of our grand opening. We will seek the use of a local mailing service program to assist us in the implementation of the campaign.
- Ongoing- we will meticulously keep our database current and use the Constant Contact program
- Loyalty and Birthday Club members will notified of upcoming special menu items and to alert them of our catering service.
5.6 Sales Strategy
Customer service is of the utmost importance. Customer surveys estimate that only 1 in 20 customers that have a problem in a restaurant will tell management about it. It will be our goal to provide a wonderful home-style meal combined with superior customer service. Training programs will include teaching materials to train our employees about service attitudes, customer perception and how to handle guest complaints. Jeff and Betty will conduct periodic staff meetings intended to review policy, increase guest satisfaction and to keep a general line of communication between staff and management. All guest complaints will be acknowledged by the staff and referred to management. Programs will be in place for all types of guest complaints. More serious complaints will be documented and kept on file. Customer feedback will be accomplished by customer surveys or the use of mystery shoppers.
5.6.1 Sales Forecast
We are expecting a conservative 5% increase in sales revenues annually over the next 3 years. The growth is adjusted for inflation. With the addition of catering revenues, sales will increase by 12.93% in Year 2 and 6.02% in Year 3.
The following table shows expected Sales Forecast for the next 3 years:
5.6.2 Sales Programs
We will encourage our employees to grow our customer base and provide incentives and regular bonuses to employees for referrals and repeat customers. These initiatives are still in the planning stages as we gear up to hire and staff. They will play an active role in our employee culture.
It is also anticipated that as we grow our catering business, along with our lunch business group, we will hire a sales director to facilitate this portion of the business. The sales director will be compensated similarly to their national peers (national Restaurant Association)
Initially we will be formed a sole proprietor: Jeff Wright d/b/a Traditional Home Style Restaurant. The State of Texas is a community property state. Over time, the couple plans to form a Limited Liability Company.
Our initial milestones are as follows:
6.1 Organizational Structure
THR expects to hire 19 employees. Together, Jeff and Betty Wright will personally select each candidate. They’ve adopted an effective interview process designed to staff the restaurant with highly qualified people for each position. Each applicant will be rated and evaluated according to a pre-defined set of standards designed for each position. Background checks will be utilized for designated positions. Recruiting efforts will always center on referrals.
6.2 Management Team
Betty Wright received her Culinary Degree from the Art Institute in Dallas. After graduation she was employed by a local chain restaurant and then at a Five Star Hotel in Dallas. Betty will initially be employed as the Kitchen Manager.
6.3 Management Team Gaps
Initially Jeff and Betty will fill in many of the management gaps. Jeff has been responsible for developing the restaurant business plan and will be developing the marketing plan. Over time, they have plans to hire a sales director, a general manager, and a kitchen manager.
To meet the gaps associated in payroll, inventory management, and cost accounting, the Wrights will purchase have considered a POS (point of sale system) that it simplifies communications between the kitchen and the wait staff. Orders go through the computer, directly to the kitchen printer. Another benefit of a restaurant POS programs is that it can track everything from food usage, to the most popular menu items. Because the POS system acts as a time clock, it can also help prepare payroll – which will save some money in the bookkeeping department. Along with the daily operations of running a restaurant, a POS system can organize profit and loss statement and sales tax.
6.4 Personnel Plan
The following sections outline our financial plan:
- Required Cost of Start-Up
- Profit and Loss
- Balance Sheet
- Financial Ratios
- Hourly Labor Costs
- Weekly Sales Projections
7.1 Important Assumptions
- Meal Price range from $8.00 – $15.00
- Average lunch price: 8.79
- Average dinner price: 13.74
- The restaurant is located in the West Roads Shopping Center and is comprised of 3,400 square feet
- The dining room will be comprised of 20 tables with a seating capacity of 86 seats and 40 available parking spaces to meet the needs of the customers.
- The restaurant will employ 19 employees
- $860,000 -1,200,000 revenue target; Industry average for casual restaurant average of $860,000.
- Annual 3% increase for inflation and 5% annual increase in revenues
- Year 2 Assumes Catering Business in Place. Assumes 4 parties monthly @ $15 per plate and $50 persons. Catering will escalate to 8 parties monthly in month 20 and then 10 parties monthly thereafter. Also assumes additional increase in staffing (4 persons to be hired at 6 hours @ $8.00 per hour.
7.2 Start-Up Costs
Total start up costs will be $363,000, $174,000 of which will be contributed by the owners and the remainder will be secured through a proposed bank loan.
7.3 Source and Use of Funds
Total start-up costs are estimated to be $363,000. The majority of the costs are associated with the restaurant equipment, inventory and furniture and furnishings for the dining room. Total costs for these items are reported to be $110,500. The costs are associated with build out and renovation of the restaurant to provide updated plumbing and creating additional space in the dining area by removing a non-supporting wall: $50,000. Additional start up expenses are in the form of working capital and contingency $182,500.
Jeff and Betty Wright will contribute $174, 000 and are requesting an additional $189,000 in the form of a bank loan. The loan is expected to be a fully amortizing 5 year term note secured by UCC filings on all furniture fixtures and equipment.
7.4 Break-Even Analysis
Total fixed costs associated with the restaurant are $669,186 and represent the annual expenses. The variable cost (overhead) is estimated to be $4.51 per meal. Based on the assumption of $11.37 as the average meal price, the breakeven revenue then is $1,108,970 or 97,535 meals (units). This is further depicted in the Table Below and the Graph that follow:
7.5.1 projected profit and loss.
The profit and loss demonstrates modest increases in revenues over the three expected years with adjustments for inflation.
7.5.2 Projected Cash Flow
The statement of cash flow shows the incoming and outgoing cash of the business.
7.5.3 Projected Balance Sheet
Table 7.5.3 Pro Forma Balance Sheet