Considerations Before Opening Your Second Restaurant Location

The idea of opening a second restaurant location can be daunting. You may wonder if your initial victories can be replicated, or if you can translate your first restaurant’s atmosphere to the new spot. Consider these tips as you start weighing the potential of a new restaurant location.

Location, Location, Location

The register and back counter area of French Truck Coffee

A restaurant’s location can impact walk-in traffic and whether you’re a match for the local demographic in a new neighborhood. The first thing to consider is how close your second location should be to the original. If your original business is extremely profitable, perhaps a closer commercial location would be ideal to absorb the overflow customers. The new location could offer additional features that the original might not provide, which will boost the initial concept. If your intent is to attract a new customer base, perhaps a location in a different neighborhood, across town, or in the suburbs would be better. The further away the new location, however, the more difficult it will be to manage both restaurants. You’ll have to scope out your competition in the new neighborhood and decide whether you’ll oversee all operations or if you’ll need additional help from the management team.

Draft a New Business Plan for a New Location

Though the principles of your original business plan may remain the same, you should devise a new business plan for the new location. You’ll need to research the new area, plan future promotions for each restaurant, and purchase new equipment. Given the success of your first location, your budget may be different this time around and afford you more flexibility. Your new customers may have different preferences and respond well to different aesthetics. Planning ahead for these potential deviations can save a lot of headaches.

The Dining Experience

If a second location is on the horizon, you’ve likely provided customers with excellent service and consistent offerings at the first. Maintain both of those admirable attributes by keeping your menu and kitchen comparable and bringing over some of the original staff members to either mentor the new team or join full-time. Accounting for the differences a new location may present is important for this aspect, as the dining experience is a major revenue driver. Perhaps your new kitchen is smaller and can’t sustain each menu item or the same amount of kitchen staff. Choose the dishes that defined your success the first time around and focus on them instead of overwhelming yourself by trying to create a carbon copy of the original restaurant.

What could a second location do for your business? At Mayer Building Company, we understand the careful considerations involved in restaurant design, and we care about every detail of each project, providing top-notch industry performance for all of our clients in the New Orleans area. Bring your ideas to us and learn more about what we can do for your new restaurant.


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