If you love cooking or preparing food, you’re passionate about developing exciting new menus and you dream of being your own boss, a catering business could be the ideal opportunity for you. With the chance to do something you enjoy and expand your venture in the future, launching your own business is an exciting way to kickstart your career.
Of course, running a commercial venture is always challenging, so be sure to learn the ropes first. To get started, take a look at these five tips for starting your own catering business:
1. Research Your Market
Before you invest time or money in a new business, get to know the market. Identify niches that are being overlooked and brainstorm ways you can meet their needs. When you know your target audience well, you’re able to deliver a product or service that really appeals to them, which helps to ensure your business will be successful from the get-go.
2. Cut Your Costs
Most start-ups struggle with a limited cash flow but reducing your costs can help you to keep your business afloat. From purchasing pre-owned kitchen equipment to buying used vans, there are plenty of ways you can cut your capital expenditure and minimise your running costs. As a result, more of the revenue you generate will be profit and you’ll have more funds to re-invest into your enterprise.
3. Get the Right Certifications
Before you can launch a catering business, you’ll need to ensure that you and your staff have the appropriate certifications. Food Safety and Hygiene for Catering courses might be essential, for example, while Hospitality Supervisions and Leadership qualifications could help to take your business to the next level. In addition to this, don’t forget to arrange to have your premises inspected, so that you can secure the relevant endorsements.
4. Develop Your USPs
Unique selling propositions (USPs) differentiate your company from your competitors. Essentially, they tell your target audience why they should choose your business over anyone else’s. Your USPs might be lower prices, locally sourced produce or specialist cuisines. Whatever they are, be sure to develop them from the outset and make sure your target audience is well aware of them.
5. Acquire Funding
Depending on the type of catering business you want to start, you may require a significant level of funding. Hiring catering premises and equipment can be costly, for example, but it’s going to be essential to your operations. As well as using your own savings to fund your catering start-up, you could take out a commercial loan, sell part of the company to family and friends or work with venture capitalists. While there are lots of options available, it’s important to research them in detail to determine what type of funding is right for your business.
6. Expand into Food Delivery
Growing Your Catering Company
Once you’re up and running, you should already be focusing on how you can grow your business. By having long-term goals, you can ensure that you’re always working towards expanding your catering company and increasing its profitability.