Opening a restaurant may be one of the bravest and scariest things you will do. There’s a lot you can do to avoid the possible terrors associated with starting your new business and to keep your spending in check. Hopefully you have the right team behind you – a trusty accountant, a savvy marketer and an experienced shopfitter like Tu Projects can make all the difference. Keep the following tips in mind, and don’t be afraid to talk to your friendly experts.
Make Your Budget Your Best Friend
The easiest way to save money from the outset is to have a watertight budget that caters for every step of the process. You can talk to your financial team for suggestions or research online for business budget tips.
It is far safer to assume something will cost marginally more than it actually does, than to budget it at less than its cost. Your budget will be the single most important tool you have while opening your restaurant, so make sure it has been planned meticulously and conservatively.
It can certainly be very affordable to maintain a “Do It Yourself” attitude, but make sure you don’t overstate your own abilities. Just because something looks easy doesn’t mean that it is easy. Assuming that you can do certain tasks without professional training could end up costing you more than if you’d hired a professional in the first instance. If you aren’t sure, it’s always safer to do a practice test. And don’t be too proud – if you don’t think you can do the job properly, you are better off hiring someone who can.
Whatever your plan, we can guarantee that you aren’t the first one to attempt it. Get online and research what others have done in similar situations, what worked, and what failed. There is nothing more satisfying than learning from others’ mistakes, particularly when it saves you money as a result.
Even if you feel you are getting a great deal for something, don’t be afraid to shop around. You will feel happier when you get a great deal, and you will have seen what else is available to you. Just be careful that you choose high quality materials and workmanship, as you won’t save money if you have to have the work redone due to a poor first attempt.
Spend Money Now To Make Money Later
There’s not much good waiting for your restaurant to open before you start planning to make money. You need to plant the seeds early if you want your opening weeks to be a success. This means marketing, advertising, and branding. It may cost money and this money may be going out before your business has opened. But as the saying goes, sometimes you have to spend money to make money. If you’re very clever, you may be able to find cheap or free forms of marketing (such as social media, local news coverage, or venue-based advertising).
Whatever your business, good planning is the most important thing you can do to keep yourself financially healthy before, during, and after, your restaurant opening.