Since many people love to eat, many entrepreneurs see it as an opportunity for them to start a business that can be very profitable. However, setting up and opening a restaurant or food truck can be an expensive and time-consuming endeavor. If you want to succeed in the food industry but don’t want to go through the hassle of opening a restaurant or food truck, starting a catering business may be your best option.
The good thing about starting a small catering business is that you can run it from the comfort of your own home. This means that you no longer have to spend more money to purchase specific cooking or baking equipment and goods, as you already have the basic items or even everything you need for this endeavor.
To ensure you are on the right track to starting a small catering business and to ensure its success, there are some useful tips you can follow. These tips include the following:
Make sure you comply with local health and safety regulations for home catering. Even if you are not opening a restaurant, you still need to apply for and obtain a settlement or operating permit. Learn about the process to get one and the various health and safety regulations you must meet or pass.
Make a list of all the gear and goods you will need and make sure you have them. The equipment, goods, and supplies you need for your kitchen will depend on your type of operation. If you plan on preparing your food for a specific event in the venue’s kitchen, you only need the most basic commercial prep supplies in your home. The same principle also works when you cook from a mobile kitchen or set up a temporary kitchen at the venues. In such cases you need mobile cool boxes or cooling units, basic kitchen supplies, pressure cookers, kitchen work tables, disposable catering supplies and food carriers. You’ll need to invest in cooking equipment like a deep fryer, convection oven, and stovetop (if you don’t already have them) if you don’t use a temporary or mobile kitchen for the events you’re hosting. Since you are just starting out, you can also rent other items such as chafing dishes, catering display items and tablecloths. Once your business is up and running, you may consider purchasing these items to save money in the long run by reducing your rental costs.
Invest in catering software. Using the right catering software can go a long way in helping you keep track of and manage your business. A catering software can help you calculate your costs quickly and effectively. It will help you to better organize all the tasks and information you need to manage as it provides you with a platform to document contacts, dates, budgets, team schedules, activities, etc. With this software you can finally think it over and present your customers with professional and impressive proposals.
Finally, work on attracting clients to your catering business. Using catering software can already help you attract customers. That being said, come up with a solid marketing strategy, capitalize on your low profile (i.e. sell your business as a purveyor of “the best home-cooked comfort food”) and offer tastings so you can bring in some customers.
Learn more about optimizing the right catering software and other useful tips for a successful catering business.