The foodservice industry is a booming market and one of the largest in the US. With more Americans than ever looking to dine out and order delivery, it’s an exciting field to consider for franchisors. But it’s also highly competitive and constantly changing. Franchisors need to be aware of a wide variety of factors within the foodservice market—from restaurant technology and data.com/en/platform/’ target=’_blank’>menu trends to customer demographics and geographic locations.
Here, we’ll discuss the top 10 things to consider when entering the foodservice market. Whether you have a large or small, nationwide or local business, knowing this information can make the difference between success and failure.
1. menu trends
One of the most important things to consider when entering the foodservice market is menu trends. People’s tastes change constantly—and you need to stay ahead of the curve. What’s hot one week might be passé the next. Look at what’s popular at other restaurants and what customers are already asking for.
You also need to consider customer demographics. Are customers looking for quick, affordable bites or slower, more extravagant meals? Depending on the market, different types of food and service styles may be preferred.
2. restaurant technology
In today’s connected world, restaurant technology is becoming increasingly important. Customers want to be able to order food online and have it delivered quickly and conveniently. They also want to be able to pay easily with their phones.
You need to consider all the different kinds of technology you’ll need to run a successful restaurant. You need to think about the type of software you’ll need to accept orders and payments, the kind of hardware you’ll need to store and process data, and the type of equipment you’ll need for food preparation and delivery.
3. 3rd party delivery and marketplace services.
In today’s foodservice market, 3rd party delivery and marketplace services are becoming increasingly popular. Customers prefer to buy food from large, well-known brands or to order takeout from local restaurants via online aggregators. You need to consider how to best capitalize on this growing trend.
There are several options for restaurants, such as partnering with 3rd party delivery services, or setting up an online store on a marketplace like Amazon or Grubhub. Different platforms have different fees and requirements, so you need to research and choose the best option for your business.
4. competitive landscape
Understanding the competitive landscape is essential when entering the foodservice market. You need to research the other restaurants in the area—not just the ones that are direct competitors, but also more general restaurants that offer similar dishes. Look into their menu items, prices, and customer reviews. Once you identify the competition, you can decide how to make yourself stand out.
5. customer demographics
Understanding the customer demographics and habits in your area is key. You need to know who your customers are, where they come from, and what they like to eat. The best way to research this is to utilize data from resources such as Brizo. This type of data can provide detailed insights into customer behavior and preferences, which can help you customize your menu and marketing plans to target the right customers.
6. local regulations
You need to be sure to research and understand the local regulations and zoning laws in the areas you’re targeting. Different cities and states have different rules and regulations, and you need to know what requirements you need to meet in order to open a restaurant. This may include submitting a business plan, passing a health inspection, and meeting other specific regulations.
Where you decide to locate your restaurant is important. You need to consider the type of area in which you’ll be opening. Is it close to public transportation, residential areas, or businesses? How close are potential competitors? You need to evaluate the location to make sure it’s suitable for your customers and your business model.
8. behavioral data
Behavioral data can be a powerful tool in understanding customer preferences in the foodservice market. Through different surveys and online reviews, you can understand what customers are looking for and what type of experience they want to have when dining out. Knowing this information can help you customize your business and menu to target the right customers.
Once you’ve done your research and understand the foodservice market, the next step is to develop a comprehensive marketing plan. Ensure that you’re reaching the right people with the right message at the right time. You’ll need to consider channels such as paid search, display, social media, and email.
10. customer service
Finally, customer service is paramount in the foodservice market. Customers expect exceptional service—from the moment they walk in the door to the moment they walk out. They want to be catered to and have their needs and preferences met.
You need to ensure that all of your staff are adequately trained and able to provide friendly, efficient service. Investing in staff training is a must for any successful restaurant.
Entering the foodservice market can be tricky—but if you consider all these factors, you’ll be on your way to success. With the right research and strategies, you can make your restaurant stand out in an increasingly crowded market.