March, 2015

5 Keys to Choosing a Food Tenancy

With the growing popularity of Instagram, Pinterest, and other social media sites, today’s generation is becoming more and more obsessed with taking selfies, ootd – or “outfit of the day” photos, and hashtag “foodporn”, “foodgasm” or “foodie” snapshots. Even celebrities post photos of what they are about to eat, or where they are having their meals.

This kind of exposure can have a big impact on your restaurant business. As a smart business owner, you should use this to your advantage. Not yet a business owner? No worries, you can still benefit from this. You can always use social media to advertise the opening of your business.

So, how and where do you begin?

Find a Good Location 

Jump start your food business by finding a good location. Look for a place that is accessible, especially to your target market. Is the place near a school, a hospital, or buildings that house multiple offices? Does it have a wide parking space to make it easier for your customers to drop by and have a quick bite? Remember, location is one of the main keys to a successful business, be it a restaurant or a retail store.

Start Up Cost

Let’s face it, you can’t expect to open up a decent place if you are not prepared to shell out your hard-earned cash. A smart entrepreneur will analyze the start-up cost and the projected income or profit. This is where you consider the rent for the place, the wages you will be paying – of course, how can you start a food business if you don’t have a chef and waiting staff, right?

Specialized Skills

You will also need to work with people who specialize in different fields of expertise such as marketing, finance, leasing, legal agreements, and designing. Do not take the latter lightly because just like the food you serve, aesthetics can either attract customers or drive them away.

Interior Design

Working closely with an experienced retail designer is beneficial to your food tenancy because this person will be able to put your ideas on paper and eventually bring it to reality.

What will your style be like? What type of furniture will you use? Do you want the interior to be playful and have bold colors? Or will your concept lean towards the modern minimalist style? The last decision will still be yours, but an interior or a retail designer will be able to give you an insight of what will work best for the type of food you will serve and the people you wish to cater to.

Our designer, Alisa, can guide you from the start of the design process up until you’re ready to cut the red ribbon and welcome your customers. She can also help you find a shop fitter who will give you an idea of the pricing and timeframes; as well as a graphic designer, whose main goal is to develop the perfect signage, brand and marketing for your new food business.

What are you waiting for? Pick up the phone and call our designer, Alisa on 0415199466 to discuss and document the start of your new business.

Marketing and Social Media

If you really have a strong desire to open up a small café, a restaurant, a pizzeria and ice cream salon or a good old bar and grill, it is best if you learn to adapt to the virtual world because it’s definitely one of the biggest platforms you will have. You will be surprised at how fast the word spreads online.

Combine mouth-watering food, good price, and excellent interior in beautiful snapshots and voilà, your business will go viral.


Starting a Retail Business

Are you thinking about starting your own retail business but you’re not quite sure where or how to start?

The good news is, there are people who can help you in taking the initial steps to starting a retail business of your own. You just have to know who to call.

Creating a successful retail business usually requires a number of people with specialized skills. A retail designer will help you put your ideas down on paper and create the right look and feel to attract your target customer. You may also need to work with a graphic designer to develop your branding, signage and marketing materials. A shop fitter will give you an idea of timeframes and pricing for your design and build your new store. You may also need to consider marketing, finance, leasing and your legal agreements.

So where is it best to start?

The person who will guide you from the start of the design process right through to opening the doors to your new business is your retail designer. Call our designer Alisa on 0415199466 to discuss where you are up to and the best way forward.

Create a Name and a Tagline for Your Retail Business

Before you start a store, it is vital to have a clear idea of who your business is and how you communicate this to your customer. For starters, you can sit down and start brainstorming until you come up with a creative name and a catchy phrase that will suit your business.

Make sure to pick a name that is easy to understand, spell and pronounce. Avoid using negative sounding words and those that are strictly generic. Your tagline should give your consumers an idea of who you are and what you are selling. Ask for some feedback from your family and friends to ensure that you have chosen the best one for your retail business. Once you have a name you are comfortable with, you may want to start working with a graphic designer to develop you branding, logos and concepts for the signage that will be used in your store.

Find a Location and Target Market

Choosing a location for your store is one of the essential steps in starting a successful retail business. When considering a location, take note of your target market because these two factors usually work hand in hand. Finding an area that already has a  large number of your target market makes your job easier in attracting your initial customers.

Who are your target customers?  What sort of products do they already buy and where do they buy them from?  Who is your direct competition and what works and doesn’t work about their business model?  What will be your price point and is this relevant to the demographic of the area? Is the location accessible? How will your customers get to your store and how easy is this for them? Is there parking or is it located in a busy pedestrian area?

These are some of the questions worth pondering over.

It is also important to carefully consider and negotiate the terms of your lease. Most agents and landlords offer a rent free period as part of your lease to allow time for you to fit out the business and get up and running.

Once you have chosen your location and signed the lease, you can start planning your store layout. Work with a good retail designer to visualize the concept and design that you want to bring into life. A good store design will not only be appealing to attract customers into your store, it will also work functionally for your staff and products.

Decide What Products to Sell

Your product and target customers will directly relate to the geographic area that you choose to locate your store in. Decide what products to sell or services to offer and start planning from there. Keep in mind that it’s best to stick with those that are in demand. The products should not just be profitable, they should also be something that you would enjoy selling. After all this is your new business.

Franchising A Retail Business

Expanding your business can be a little overwhelming at first as you go through the growing pains of developing not only one but many successfully businesses at the same time.

How exactly do you start franchising a retail business? Like any undertaking, there a number of factors to consider that will affect your likelihood of success. Demographic, Location, Store Design and Operational Systems are all keys to a successful franchise. However, before you get buried in the detail, the best place to start is speaking with someone you trust to advise you throughout the process.

The first person you should speak with is an expert in franchising, someone who has been there and done it before, and is willing to share their experiences with you. Elizabeth Gillam from Franchisee Success is a franchisee mentor, and a multi-award winning franchisee who can share valuable insights about her own path to success as well as guiding you in the right direction to starting your own profitable franchise.

Draft a Business Plan and Proposal

I’m sure you have heard the old quote “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail”.  Your business plan is the roadmap for your business success. This is where you draft preliminary concepts, budget, team and territory structure and record the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) that will tell you and your team if your business is heading for profits.

What are your plans for your business? Think of both short and long term goals. Keep in mind that these will be the building blocks of your project. You have to create a persuasive, yet achievable and realistic proposal to pitch to your prospective franchisees.

Store Design, Location and Target Market

Before you create multiples of your existing store design, it is important to make sure the design you are working with is the best possible fit for your store concept, team and customer.

Review and analyze your current store design, customers and layout.

What works well currently? What would you choose to change if you were to design the store again? How effective is your branding and the look and feel of your store in attracting your target customers? Could this be updated or refined? How cost-effective was your store to fit out?

Work with a good retail designer who is experienced in retail design to document and refine the elements that make up your store. Documenting and recording these elements in a brand style guide allows the store to be reproduced consistently and cost effectively for your new franchisees. Our designer Alisa offers a complimentary design strategy session to help you to review your store design and get started on documenting your franchise model.

Create an Operations Manual and Set Standards

Starting a business is never easy – maintaining a successful one is even harder if you do not have rules and guidelines to follow. Creating an operations manual will make your system more organized and your business smoother to manage for you and your franchisees.

The way you do what you do is what makes your business successful. The challenge is fully communicating your way of doing things to your franchisees to ensure they replicate your success. Setting standards and meeting them is one way of maintaining your credibility as a trusted brand.

Listen to the Experts

In order for you to be successful in this line of business, you don’t just have to be hard-working and dedicated; you need to be smart and practical as well. Seeking professional advice from experts will improve your chances of succeeding.

Through the franchise process, there are a number of experts that will help you to stay on track. Consult a financial analyst to go over the cost of the project. Ask an attorney to draft the franchise agreement contracts. Find a good marketing consultant to grow your business. There are also consultants who will walk with you through the process, your franchise consultant and designer will work with you to bring your business systems and dream stores to life. Call Alisa on 0415199466 to get started today.

How to Start a Food Franchise

It is no secret that the food and beverage industry is one of the riskiest industries a new business owner can enter. New business owners are faced with a multitude of challenges as they learn to manage customers, staff, suppliers and cost to name a few. There is a great opportunity for skilled operators who know how to set up a successful food business to offer new operators an alternative that is likely to be much more profitable and likely to succeed. A food franchise.

Have you set up a successful business and are looking at expanding the brand and creating more store? If you are thinking of expanding or franchising there are a number of you should consider to create a business that is both profitable and scalable.

Create a Business Plan and Proposal

Conduct a feasibility study before you decide to expand your business. There is a lot you can learn from analysing your current store and customers. Who are your customers? Where are they located? What works or doesn’t work about your current store? When you are looking at new stores this will help you to choose the right location and ensure that you can cater to your target market.

You need to have an outline of your short and long term goals, as well as the vision and values of your company. Prepare to pitch your business proposal to prospective franchisees. Make sure that you have the answers to whatever questions your prospects might have and you are confident that the business you are offering them will be both appealing and profitable for them.

Document what makes you successful

This process is crucial in every business expansion. Before you can replicate a successful business you must know what makes you successful in the first place and then you must document it in a way that it can be replicated. This applies to everything in your business; store design, branding, operational systems, staff. It is bet to work with experts who can assist you in this process. Sarah Cobb from Cariblue Franchising or Bryan Keen from How to Franchise Simply are both experts who work with business owners to document and systemise your business to prepare you for franchising.

If you are looking to expand a food business then working with a retail designer who has experience in Food Service design will allow you to document your design and ensure you have consistency in your store fit outs. A complete style guide also allows you to have insight into the fit out costs that will be passed on to your franchisees. Our designer Alisa can be contacted on 0415199466 to discuss your needs.

A Little bit of Paperwork

Preparing all the necessary legal documents is a critical part of franchising. Good legal advice will ensure that both you and your franchisee are well taken care of and protected legally. Do not leave your assets unprotected because if things go bad, this will surely be a pain in the neck.

Welcome Aboard

Once you and your prospective franchisee have come to an agreement that is beneficial to the both of you, the last thing that you need to do is to make everything official and start the on boarding process with your new franchisee. Planning this process through in advance and setting up the contacts your franchisee will need for marketing, store design, fit out, suppliers, and recruitment will make the on boarding process as smooth and seamless as possible.

Maintaining the good will that is associated with your brand will attract more prospective franchisees in the future. Make it a point to always put a high value on good customer service because it will make or break your business. To get started with franchising your business, call Alisa on 0415199466.