New eBook Reveals How To Successfully Open A Restaurant… Free E-Book!

How to Write a Restaurant Business Plan

Everything in life needs planning. Whether it's a small birthday party or constructing a building, each task needs to have some sort of a blueprint. 


Even experts who have been in a field for a certain amount of time agree that having a plan in hand gives you a little idea about your end product. If you’re someone who is looking to open a restaurant but has no clue where to begin, you’ve come to the right place. 


Writing a business plan is the next best possible thing you can do when you’re intending to open up a restaurant. If you need guidance on how to go about it, carry on with this article which makes writing a restaurant business plan easy:


Ideally, your restaurant business plan should include the following topics:

1. Executive Summary

First and foremost, you should have an executive summary at the beginning of your plan. Don’t know what it is? It’s okay. We’ve all been there. An executive summary is a short, succinct summary of your entire business plan. Basically, you should write it for someone who does not have a lot of time but wants to know everything about your business plan. So, maybe you can include a little bit of everything. Skip the boring details.

2. Restaurant Vision and Concept

This is like a primer of your restaurant. Readers, investors or even your team should get a flavour of what the restaurant is all about. Here, you can include logos, your colour theme, what cuisine inspired you to take this leap or just a simple story of your childhood dream. You can include your choice for interior, the staff’s clothing, your location, or maybe even add music suggestions!

Moreover, your restaurant name should be such that it inspires people, or at the very least, it makes them feel something. It should be catchy and should have a nice ring to it. 

3. Thorough Market Analysis

After you’re done with the above two, you need to provide your readers with why your restaurant has a competitive edge over others. Why should people come to your restaurant and not eat somewhere else? If you’re doing something different or have a unique menu, you should include it here. Make it sound like your restaurant is the only one in town offering such services.

Your market analysis should ideally be done before you set a business plan. 

4. Introduce the Team

Of course, you cannot do everything on your own. This is why you have a team who should be included in this business plan. Give a brief description of your team and why they are important in achieving your restaurant dream. You should be able to convey how many people are involved and what positions they will hold in your restaurant and its management.

Perhaps, you can begin with emphasizing the value of team culture and present it as one of your aspirations. Any investor who reads your business plan will need to know if you are not single-handedly managing it or delegating tasks.

5. Target Audience

Any business which does not have a specific target audience is treading in muddy waters. It’s okay if your target audience is everybody (since it’s food). But you should try to define it as much as possible. Maybe the location where your restaurant is can be count as a target audience. However, if your restaurant only targets youngsters, then mention why you think this a suitable demographic. Maybe it has to do with the menu, or it offers a gaming zone etc.

If location and demographic don’t help, then maybe try to define your target audience through psychographic factors. This means that you define their lifestyle and why they would choose your restaurant out of other options. 

6. Menu

The menu is the most important part of your business plan. After all, it is a restaurant’s business plan. You should have a dummy menu with prices and deals so that readers can get an idea of what to expect.

7. Financials

While financials can be intimidating, they shouldn’t have to be. You can hire a consultant or an accountant for handling the financial part of the business. But ideally, you should include the cost of opening a restaurant business. This means that your readers should know if the location is rented or leased, the cost of equipment, employee pay, cost of buying raw materials, and marketing costs.

Restaurant Funding Tips For Small Food Businesses

You should have a rough idea about how big or small your restaurant is going to be.
Ideally, people hire an accountant associated with the restaurant industry. They can provide their expertise and give key projections such as:

  • Breakeven analysis
  • Profit and loss statement 
  • Capital Requirements Budget 

8. Marketing Plan

Everybody gets by with a little help. After all, this is your labour of love. So you definitely want the best for it. A good marketing strategy can get your game up. You can choose social media and do the marketing yourself. Or hire a PR agency for it.
You will have to justify whatever strategy you employ to your investors.
You should include your plans to have a soft opening so that you can get an idea of what customers liked or disliked and what can be further improved.

Restaurant Marketing Strategy

Bottom Line

Opening a restaurant is a big deal itself. But before your restaurant dream can take off, it is important to plan efficiently. Since this is an iterative process, it will save you from unnecessary costs, make you re-think certain decisions and possibly add a new item to your menu. Or simply just provide you with a fresh outlook of how it is going to turn out. Not to forget, you can use this business plan for your investors too!
So, if you want to launch a thriving restaurant business, get to planning!
If you are unsure of how to write a restaurant business plan, there are many templates available online. 

Check this post from Startups

New eBook Reveals How To Successfully Open A Restaurant… Free E-Book!


About the Author

Massimo’s career has grown up through the restaurant world, starting as a waiter through to high-end restaurant openings within an operational management capacity. This depth of experience has allowed him to understand the business from both a guest’s needs to what a team needs, giving him the benefit of an all-rounded view and approach to problem solving.