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5 Great Ideas for a Small Restaurant


Starting a small restaurant takes big planning, whether it’s an innocuous coffee shop at the corner or a modest bistro in the heart of the city. Additionally, you need to focus on optimizing your marketing just as much as you’re focused on improving your menu options and attracting the necessary clientele to dabble in those options.


Thankfully, as things continue to open up alongside climbing vaccination rates, this might be a good time for you to put your small restaurant idea into practice. It doesn’t have to be fancy. It doesn’t even need a jaw-dropping slogan, although a line that’s catchy works. All you need is to deliver quality food and creative ways to maximize your customers’ dining experience. It sounds like simple advice in an industry as competitive as the restaurant industry. But, it’s the most helpful advice you can get to survive and thrive as a small restaurant owner.


Open a Food/Drink Truck



Now that we’re in the heart of summertime, it’s an excellent opportunity to mobilize your offerings and find customers more than willing to try them. Owning a food truck has countless benefits, from lower upfront costs to manageable operations costs and the ability to attract customers in high-traffic areas.


You can set one up in the heart of the downtown area in your city. You can host it at a summer event, by a supermarket, or just about anywhere you know that attracts a lot of people. Customary food trucks serve hotdogs, burgers, fries, pastries, and ice cream. But don’t limit yourself to the norm, and don’t limit it to food either. Considering the sweltering heat, you can start a drinks truck offering slushies, fresh-pressed juices, or anything that instantly cools people down. Your customers will thank you for the thirst-quenching treat.


Rooftop Bars



This isn’t just a great idea for the summertime, but any season, particularly for people who like thrills, a unique ambiance, and some good music. A rooftop bar is perfect as it takes people away to clear their minds, enjoy some good food and leave you a nice tip after their enjoyable patronage!


You can light up your floor and set the scene for your guests, whether that scene features a mountainous backdrop or an impressive, elevated view of the city. Shop for the right space to host your rooftop bar early in the planning process, so you’re able to provide the most appealing setting possible.


Start a Pop-Up Restaurant


Another small restaurant idea that’s been gathering momentum — similar to food trucks, you’ll find pop-up restaurants amid large cities, though you’ll also see them in empty warehouses. As the name suggests, pop-up restaurants pop up for stretches during a year, whether that’s a few days, weeks, or months at a time.


These types of restaurants will rent existing restaurants for hours at a time while paying a part of profits to the restaurant owner(s). All you need is a viable budget, the right local permits and a quality location to set up and attract customers.


Catering Initiatives


Are you an avid party-goer and love food? Catering is the perfect way to blend these loves and share them with the masses. Some of the world’s most famous chefs started with catering before opening restaurants and making their names.


By heading to catering parties, you have opportunities to optimize menu planning, meet customers from all walks of life and supervise staff. You can also cater major events like weddings, funerals, and others that provide opportunities to build your serving techniques, expand your menu options and improve your communication skills. Catering is a good way to prepare you for what to expect should you open a bigger restaurant.


Outdoor Seating Plus Heating