You may want to consider starting a catering business from home if you enjoy hosting parties for your family and friends, staying on top of food trends, and you possess an entrepreneurial spirit. It is possible to start a business with relatively low overhead costs and build it as you gain more clients. The steps below will guide you through the process of creating your own catering business from home.
1. Conducting research
Research the market and see who else provides catering services in your area before you launch a catering business. Make sure you know the menu, list of services, prices, and customers of your competitors. You can also find out what their unique selling points are by visiting their websites.
Besides food, successful caterers also offer convenience, affordability, unique menus, and corporate style. When catering customers are shopping, they usually look for benefits, and your catering business should offer them those benefits.
2. Recruiting employees
Choose the type of staff you’ll need for food preparation, delivery, and service. It is also possible to hire a temporary agency for the first few years while your business is being built up. Ensure that your serving staff wears a uniform that you approve. Provide your employees with the training they need to provide the type of service you want them to provide for your clients.
3. Make a menu
Determine how much kitchen space you need, what appliances you should install, and how much profit you can make. Your menu should include a variety of items that will appeal to a wide range of tastes.
4. Choose a niche for your catering business.
Before you start catering, you need to identify your niche. As with any business, catering should be rooted in the passion and interest you have for the food you prepare. When you start your catering business, you can focus on different types of food. Make lunch or brunch-style food, such as sandwiches, quiches, tarts, salads, and other foods served during the day.
There is also the option of focusing on the wedding reception or special event meals, desserts only services, and appetizers and cocktails. There is an increasing trend among clients to hire caterers to serve only appetizers, sometimes accompanied by specialty cocktails prepared by the caterer.
You should make sure that your menu appeals to a wide range of tastes, even if you specialize in one type of meal or cuisine. Provide vegetarian food to clients who do not consume non-vegetarian foods.
5. Supplies and space should be secured.
Catering businesses can’t operate from home kitchens in most states. Decide what type of space you should rent for your catering business. As your business expands, you should find a permanent space with cooking and storage facilities where you can operate from a commercial kitchen.
If you have a lot of baked items on your menu, you should install at least two ovens; on the other hand, if you have a lot of fried food, you should purchase more than one fryer.
6. Make sure the dishes are up to par.
Plan a party to test your dishes after you’ve settled on a menu. The best way to get honest feedback on your food and catering services is to do this before you launch the business. Until you are confident that your dishes are delicious and famous, you should make changes to them. Before you launch your business, practice until you are perfect; learn the techniques, cook times, and how to present your services.
7. Develop a marketing strategy for your business
To make your business popular, you should market it. Invest in local newspaper ads even before you plan to launch your business. To promote your business, you can also hold mobile tasting events. Your business information should be posted on wedding websites, and you should ask local wedding venues to refer you to potential clients.
Providing food service at a remote site, such as a hotel, public house, or other location, is what caterers do. Choosing the best catering for your guests can be difficult with so many options available. Usually, this type of business requires a lot of certifications and a lot of workers. The steps above will surely help you start your catering business from home as smoothly as possible.