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Monthly Archives: January 2011

Unique Restaurant Starts with Only $8,000 in Capital

Here is a great story about two brothers who decided to start a restaurant and have managed to pull it off successfully.

There are two great lessons in this story that every aspiring restaurant entrepreneur can learn from and should take note of if they want to reach the same goal.

The first is that if you are smart and determined you don’t need a ton of money to start a restaurant. You do have to make certain decisions that support that goal, such as not having a super fancy interior makeover and using used equipment instead of new and not getting the A location you were hoping for but making the B or C location you can get work … Keep reading

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Example of Restaurant Business Plan Financials Part 4- Restaurant Merchandise & Other Sales

Now that we did the hard part of predicting the sales we are going to see for food, beverage and bar plus any takeout or catering sales we expect the next step is to add in sales from other items.

What are other items? Well, the list below shows some of the most common ones but really you are limited only by your creativity.

There is a sports bar business in my area that has a huge collection of unique beers and they sell a “round-the-world” pass that they encourage their regulars and not so regulars to sign up for whenever they come in. The deal is the customer pays $25 and then they become members of the club and … Keep reading

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Restaurant Marketing- Theme Nights Are Good Business

Pura Vida Tapas

Here’s an article that highlights two different takes on restaurant theme nights. These are great ways to liven up the scene at your restaurant, draw in new customers who might not otherwise have come in and spike your bottom line all at the same time.

The first thing to do is come up with something that makes sense for your business and also hopefully ties in the either a larger theme (like the restaurant tying in with the vampires and Twilight craze) or provides something more compelling than the regular menu (adding live professional dancing to the regular tapas menu).

The next thing is to get your staff excited about it and talking it up with the … Keep reading

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Example of Restaurant Business Plan Financials Part 3- Estimating Restaurant Sales

The next step in creating our example restaurant business plan financials is doing the sales projections.

The sales projections are critical because they are the basis for everything else we are doing- all of the expenses and any potential for profit and paying off the loan or investors is going to be based on having enough sales.

Now, that doesn’t mean just keep moving the sales up until you’ve got enough! Your sales projections have to be conservative and underestimate what will really happen if anything.

The best way to do this is to visit and observe similar sized and priced operations in the same area where you expect to open your restaurant. See how many people come in, how … Keep reading

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Example of Restaurant Business Plan Financials Part 2- Restaurant Loan Calculator

We learned in part 1 of our example restaurant business plan financials how much capital we have to invest between ourselves and any investors we may bring on so the next step is to see how that translates into a loan or loans.

As I mentioned, even if you can pay for the whole thing yourself it is almost always a good idea to stretch your funds by borrowing- this not only gives you an extra cushion you may be very glad you have down the road but it also increases your return on the investment if everything goes according to plan.

The restaurant business loan calculator takes the total capital from the previous page and the loan percentage and … Keep reading

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Example of Restaurant Business Plan Financials Part 1- Getting Started

This post is the first in a series that is going to run through everything that is required in a restaurant business plan financial statements package and the way we go about creating it using our restaurant business plan software.

You don’t need our software to benefit from these lessons but I will be showing how we take the basic information you provide about your plans for your restaurant and turn it into accountant ready financial statements using our Excel based software so you can see the amount of work and steps involved if you choose to do it by hand.

You can also see how so much of it is restaurant specific that trying to replicate this with … Keep reading

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Naming Your Restaurant and Understanding Trademarks

I’ve already written about how to pick a name for your restaurant business but that was mostly about how to pick a good name that is going to be an asset to your business and not a hinderance.

The article below is more about how you can find yourself in competition with another restaurant that has the same name as yours but is in no way related.

There are two problems here that the owners didn’t take into account. The first was picking a name that is simply a common word that can’t be trademarked. They named their place Salt. It might be catchy, but there is no way to protect it. The owner mentions the idea of an “unwritten … Keep reading

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American Fast Food Trends- Healthy Is In

The anecdotal evidence has been stacking up for awhile now but this article pulls some data out that kind of proves the point. The old days of greasy fatty fast food are coming to an end and the demand for healthier fare is up.

People still want fast and they still want value menus and cheap options but they also are over the overly processed and unappealing mass produced low quality food some chains are still selling.

This article was inspired in part by the fact that Wendy’s announced they are trying to sell off Arbys since it no longer fits with their goals. That’s a nice way of saying they don’t want to be saddled with a loser any

Keep reading
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Writing a Restaurant Business Plan is Easy with the Right Software

There are always lots of ways to do anything you want to accomplish and with almost everything there are harder ways and easier ways to get the job done.

In the situation where your goal is the proper completion of writing a restaurant business plan you have several options.

One choice is to just open a word processing program and start typing. You can look online for a restaurant business plan outline and suggestions on how to write the plan and eventually you will have something that will work.

A better option however is to use a software program specifically designed to help you quickly and easily create a plan for the restaurant which will already have the exact outline … Keep reading

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Can Your Restaurant Go Green? Practical and Impractical Ideas to Consider

This article (link below) I found is an interesting take on what plans for restaurant businesses might make to go “green” to the benefits of themselves and their customers.

I am not sure that the person who put together the ideas has ever tried them or run a restaurant (actually, I’m pretty sure they have not) but let’s give it a little thought since it is something a lot of people are interested in and if we can do our part not only might it help the world but it could also work as a marketing angle which never hurts, either! đŸ™‚

The first idea is composting. Personally, I don’t see it unless you run a really rural place Keep reading

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