Are you a stay-at-home mom, with a culinary hobby that earns you countless compliments on your food? Then, this might be your chance to convert your passion into a profession. It is a great way to earn extra money while doing something that you enjoy. As your home-grown business expands, you will be able to cover more events and diversify your services. It definitely is a major win, when you are able to compete and offer birthday, wedding, or even party catering services!
While you might be wondering about all the requests that you have gotten for being a personal chef, or the amazing frostings and homemade sauces, don’t get carried away. The home-based food business is still a business. And just like any other business, you need to plan and research ahead, when setting up the business.
We have curated some tips to help you with setting up a successful home-based food business. Take a look at them:
Table of Contents
Familiarize Yourself with the State Laws
This is the first and the foremost step in setting up a culinary business, or any other for that matter. Yet, it is often overlooked. Many countries require certifications and accreditations before setting up the business. Such requirements include zoning, getting business licenses and permits as well as the production and the safety grants associated. In cases where the businesses fail to meet these requirements, it jeopardizes their ability to run their catering services to the fullest.
Figure out a Market for Your Business
As a food business owner, you should know about the market for your new business. Even if you make the world’s best cupcakes, without a market you won’t be able to sell them properly. That’s why make sure you have a market to sell your products to. Else, you won’t be able to generate any revenues.
Experts believe that one should do the focus groups first. This practice allows the new business owners to make small batches of food, with inexpensive packaging and sell them out to a few retail locations. This small activity allows people to experiment before investing in the business fully. If the response is good, they move ahead. Else they can choose to take a step back without incurring major costs, or simply altering the menu.
Many home-based food businesses evolve out of a hobby, and they make the common mistake of running it in a casual manner. However, that’s not how it should be. Whether it is a sole proprietorship or a corporation, it is important for the owner to formulate an entity and operate the business like that. By doing so, it keeps the liabilities of the company separate from the personal assets. It is also able to register all products as trademarks in the company name.
A lot of hard work goes into setting up the business. While you might have the culinary skills to prepare amazing food, you will still need assistance. This includes setting up a website, managing accounts, gaining legal rights, and securing the trademarks, and a lot more that simply falls outside your expertise levels.
Even if you have the expertise to do it all, you still will be needing some help, and it’s perfectly fine to reach out. With a team of professionals, your business will diversify, without jeopardizing food quality. This will earn you loyal customers and generate great profits.
Write it Down
It is very important to put everything in writing. From managing orders, sending invoices, creating menus, and preparing recipes for outsourced vendors, everything should be in writing. Many businesses incorporate the use of applications and software to smoothen out the process. Utilizing tech increases efficiency and also reduces room for error.
Business professionalism takes you a long way. It doesn’t matter if you are in pajamas and you are overlooking your children as they do their homework while you bake food. Rather, you should look like an established company with a professional website, brochures, and business cards. Make sure that every business aspect reflects professionalism at all times.
Pricing Creates a Difference
This is an integral part to help you penetrate into the competitive market. Therefore, make sure to spend some time conducting avid research, determining the cost, and then setting the price.
Business owners of home food catering services should carefully take into account all the factors from ingredient costs, packaging, time, and profit when setting the price. However, make sure that the price is not too high, else the risk will escalate, and you can reduce your customer base. A reduced price will get you profits but not good profit. So make sure you are able to get adequate levels of profit.
In all, make sure you are able to incorporate these tips when transforming your culinary hobby into a successful business.