Keen understanding of customer’s tastes and preferences and your culinary hobby of cooking; can help you start your own food/home-based restaurant business. “How to resonate in a huge space? How to initiate the business? How to convert your hobby into a full-fledged business?”- some of the bombardment of your thoughts!
Let’s figure out some tactics to provide you complete flexibility for your business model which in turn can give you huge profits. Moving on to every single element one by one!
#1: Decide on the category to choose for your business
If you’re interested in initiating your catering service business or chocolate business or tiffin services, categorise your expertise for the same. Say, if you’re interested in starting your catering services, understand the pros and cons to need to abide by. As catering services require planning and organizing skills, one bad order can give you the negative word of mouth. Look forward to all such risks coming to your path.
#2: Legal formalities (licensing) to be a sure shot initiation
Make sure you get FSSAI (Food Safety and Standards Authority of India) licensing on an initial basis. It is mandatory to get food licensing under SSA when you start with your food business. You can issue your license online with utmost ease and comfort for a period of 1 to 5 years. After completion of your licensing period, you need to apply for renewal 30 days prior to the expiry date. There are various sites like https://legaldocs.co.in/food-license and https://foodlicensing.fssai.gov.in/ where you can avail discounts.
#3: Carry out market research and test the market
Get a prototype and a test service for your food products before stepping into the market. Host your guest parties and invite the guests to get the relevant feedback. Understand their varying food tastes and preferences & find out the areas of improvisation. Say you make the best cupcakes ever on the planet, but you don’t get your market to promote it’s just of no use. Find your target audience and proceed accordingly.
#4: Design your business plan and model
Include all the elements right from the scratch like: brand name, logo, concept, menu, services, team, design, target audience, location, etc. Your marketing plan, financial feasibility, unique selling proposition, risks projections, operations plan should be collectively summarized into your business model. The cost element is a vital consideration. Based on your market, fix the costs for your overall business.
#5: Start small, say reaching through social media
Social data is the information that we get from social media platforms. The marketers look for customer insights that may drive the sales or revamp their strategies. On Facebook, there are likes, followers and shares; on Twitter, there are impression rates and retweets, on Instagram, there are hashtags, user engagement and other related data. Based on this information, your online home-based restaurant can work for you.
#6: Create your menu and the list of items to include
Do not make a mistake of idolising your menu with five- star food restaurants. Look what comes to your budget and availability of resources. It should have a small size and should be simpler to read. Copyright your menu and consider adding creative writing or description like: “American style hamburger (ingredients specified) with marinara sauce on the top”. Create a special menu corner as well.
#7: Purchase professional earthenware and materials
Ceramic and pottery supplies are available on Amazon. You can also get monetised by promoting their products on your social media. Food photography with brand promotion is always a win-win situation. If you have tiffin service as your business, you can make use of bento boxes to deliver your packaged thalis or food. Similarly, you can figure out your own unique way of packaging and delivering your food.
#8: Contact your vendors for supply of your food
If you’re owning a new business, finding vendors is a nasty task! You won’t easily be able to develop supplier connection. In that case, here is the list of people you can consider in your supply chain management: Wholesale food suppliers, farmers, manufacturers, other restaurants, processors, local market, organic suppliers, wine suppliers. On an early basis, wholesalers and farmers are recommended.
#9: Create marketing strategies to pitch about your business
No business is complete without effective marketing! Build the visibility of your business online. Use email marketing, social media marketing, search engine optimization for your website, content marketing, niche marketing techniques to upscale your business. The more you engage your customers, (through loyalty programs and advertising campaigns), the more you can leverage your customers. Pitch your food as in you narrate your passion.
#10: Include testimonials and referrals for updates
Happy Thanksgiving, happy holidays, offers, discounts, etc. you can convey through emails. Why not shoot feedback forms and ask for their honest reviews. If they are extremely happy with your service, you can think about taking their testimonials. Hand-written thank you notes, bouquet, or any other grateful email messages should be welcomed. Your loyal customers are your biggest fans and those happy ones are likely to get a huge crowd through their positive word of mouth.
It’s natural to be scared of starting something new. But the scariest is not even giving an attempt. Learn from your mistakes and keep up with the guidelines mentioned above. Good luck!
Diksha MenghaniDiksha loves to write about the vast understanding of everything happening around her. She regularly contributes a Food Guest Post on F and B Recipes.