5 Essential Guidelines for Starting a Successful Catering Business

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A catering business is a lucrative venture, especially if you are passionate about cooking and entertaining guests. Like any other business, you need to do a thorough research of the industry you want to venture into so that you are well prepared for the task. As a smart entrepreneur, you need to know all the legal, financial and logistics requirements of the venture. Here are some insights into what you need to know before you establish a catering business:

Obtain the Necessary Legal Documents and Insurance Cover

You need to ensure that your business is legit. Consult your local authorities on the permits and licenses required to operate your catering business. Similarly, insure your company to make sure that your business, employees, and customers are well protected in case of any misfortune.

Build and Improve Skills

Experience is crucial, especially in the catering business. You may possess the necessary meals-preparation skills, but practical experience in the catering industry can help you hone those skills to run a successful business. Professional and well-established catering companies such as Flavours Catering are always looking for talented people to work events, so working for them for a short while will help you gain invaluable experience and give you a competitive edge in your entrepreneurial endeavors.

When it comes to skill improvement, working for someone else can help you learn more about how to run a business as well as gain experience in using a variety of commercial cooking equipment. Based on that, you can decide what type of equipment you want to purchase for your catering business, including a cooktop, convection oven, fryer and grill, commercial woodfired pizza ovens, beverage dispensers, and a few other items. Investing in a business could bear fruits if you have a knack for improving and improvizing yourself and your craft.

Implement Cost-Cutting Measures

When starting out, it is prudent to incorporate cost-cutting strategies in your business so that you are not overwhelmed by operational costs. Rent a decent but not extravagant working space as rent can take up a lot of your capital. You need staff to assist you in the preparation, delivery, and serving of meals. Also, get in touch with a catering van rental company to provide you with vehicles for transporting food and equipment to and from events. In the beginning, you may not need full-time employees, so consider hiring staff on a part-time basis and promote them to full-time terms progressively as the business grows.

Similarly, you need not buy all the catering equipment right away. Because if you do, the quality of the equipment would depend on the amount you can put down to buy them. And if you can’t dedicate adequate finance towards it, you would have to purchase second-hand or sub-par quality products which would not last long nr function as efficiently. So, you could consider leasing FFD Catering Equipment that you could use for years at a time. Besides, it could be lighter on your capital since you could pay the lease on a yearly basis. In addition, you would enjoy tax relief as the tax liability would be less and the taxable profit on revenue generated would be reduced.

Devise Creative Marketing Strategies

The secret to any successful business venture maintaining a sizeable clientele base. Take advantage of all the available platforms and onboard as many customers as possible. With the current prevalent use of the internet, market your catering services and menus on social media networks such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pin interest among others. Maintain a commendable online presence by establishing and running an informative and engaging website that contains your contacts, available menus, food prices, pictures of meals and pictorial evidence of the events you have catered for in the past. Build an impressive portfolio and encourage customer feedback on your site. Additionally, do not shy away from marketing your services to event planners and coordinators as these are key clients in the catering business. You can lure them by offering them introductory discounts.

Efficient Book Keeping is Vital

You will need to keep proper financial records of your business to keep track of your business performance. This will also help in case you would like to seek a bank loan in future to expand your catering business. You can download easy-to-use accounting software from the internet at the beginning and engage professional accountants later when the business grows, and record keeping gets complex.

Always remember that the key to all successful businesses is offering excellent customer service consistently. Strive to provide the best service to your clients, and they will be your brand ambassadors. Make your menus creative and dynamic to sustain your customers. Most importantly, be ready to deliver on all your promises and respond wisely to constructive feedback.


About Author

Fiona is a stay at home mum of 3 and a wife to a city banker. In her spare time (when not looking after the kids) she enjoys running, blogging and taking the digs for long walks.