Chinese food has proven popular in the UK and most other countries around the world. There has been a number of restaurants that have established themselves as viable businesses over the past few decades.
Food Delivery Insurance is an essential expense
If you have the necessary skills and experience to prepare these types of dishes and want to make a career out of it, opening your own Chinese takeaway business might be the right option for you. Food delivery services have grown exponentially over the past five years, so if you want to take advantage of this consumer convenience, make sure your drivers are insured to deliver food. If you need further information on how to get the most suitable cover, Utility Saving Expert has a really helpful guide on food delivery insurance. You can even use their free comparison tool to compare cheap policies from different providers. Here’s what you need to do to start your own Chinese takeaway business:
No matter what industry you’re in, you will need to research the market thoroughly. This is to understand if there is an actual demand for your product or service, this is no different for food catering businesses. If there is a demand for it, is it already being met by your competitors, is there scope for you to enter the market?
If you have some established competitors in this space, they can provide really valuable insights before you think about your own business structure. Start by adding up how many existing Chinese restaurants already exist in your town or city. Look at the dishes they serve to customers. Enter as a customer to see how busy they are on each night of the week. If there is already a ‘Chinatown’ district, setting up shop here may be a suitable option. Although, you will need to have a unique selling point to differentiate yourself from your competitors.
Do your research on local takeaways in your area
The food business attracts intense competition, so you’ll need to offer larger portions and lower prices to build up a reputation, as well as providing great food and excellent customer service. You’ll need to assess your competitors and answer the following questions:
- What type of food and drink do they serve?
- How often do they alter their menus and do they offer seasonal dishes?
- What prices are they charging their customers?
- Do they offer a takeaway or delivery service?
- Have they registered for online food ordering services such as Deliveroo, Just Eat or Uber Eats?
- What are their main opening and closing times?
- What atmosphere does their restaurant provide, think about furnishings and decorations.
If there is a gap in the market, this could be your chance to start your own venture. Remember not to compete on price alone, as it may become difficult to offer high quality food and top-notch customer service. Especially when you consider that margins on each order will be very low.
The section of the market you’re targeting will determine your customer base, in addition to where you are located and the time of day you open. Many Chinese restaurants are able to adapt to the time and day of the week. For example, you may have some core customers who only visit at different times throughout the week, local business people may visit during lunch hours, families are more likely to visit on the weekend. Those who are out shopping may visit on a Saturday or Sunday lunch time. In tourist destinations, you may not even see the same customer for a second time.
These days consumers have become accustomed to high standards; for both food and customer service. You’ll want to ensure your restaurant is inviting and remains clean. A good food hygiene inspection rating from your local authority will assist you in this regard. Your approach must be followed by your staff, ensure workers are always polite and work efficiently. No one wants to wait over an hour for a meal. If you have to charge more, this is totally fine but only as long as your customers are getting good value for money.
Market Your Takeaway Business
One of the biggest costs for any new food business will be advertising and marketing. No matter what type and level of service you offer, you’ll want to make sure your customers are aware of your Chinese takeaway. Some of the best ways to market a business include the following:
- Advertise in a local newspaper
- Use social media platforms
- Participate in local and regional food festivals
- Hand out business cards or deliver leaflets through customers’ doors
- Have a professionally designed website that includes your menu options
- Register for online food delivery services such as Deliveroo, Just Eat and Uber Eats
Marketing is one of the most important aspects of any new business. It won’t matter if you have the best food in the country if no one knows about it. You can also work with an agency to create an effective advertising campaign that takes advantage of both digital and traditional methods.
This guide has hopefully given you a quick taster on what it takes to start your own Chinese takeaway business. No matter how you slice it, it will take hard work, determination and patience to become successful.