How to Write a Business Plan for a Restaurant Startup

Every entrepreneur or business consultant will have a different interpretation of what a business plan is and how important it is to write one. One thing is certain though, putting together a well written and presented plan takes time. If you are going to write one, and you are well advised to do so, then you may as well do it properly so it will benefit your business and serve its various purposes.

We have laid out a number of points that you can consider regarding business plan layout, content and presentation. Hopefully the information presented below will be helpful to you as you proceed to write your own restaurant business plan.

Communicate Clearly

The purpose of a business plan is basically to convey important information about the proposed business to the reader. Focus on communicating information clearly so that readers can understand by using wording that your target audience will be familiar with. Don’t cram too much into one paragraph and make sure that each sentence flows nicely into the next.

Avoid Mistakes

Restaurant business plans are usually lengthy documents that contain written sections as well as sections consisting of figures relating to financial estimates. You must be thorough in your editing to make sure that everything is correct and that all of the numbers add up. If you present interested parties with a report full of errors then your chances of convincing them that your prospects in the restaurant business are good will be diminished.

Divide The Plan Into Sections

There are many different layouts that you can follow when it comes to dividing your restaurant business plans into sections with appropriate titles. If you look online you will see many examples of templates that can be used as the basis business plans for restaurants. You are basically free to come up with your own layout as long as you can include all of the necessary information within it. However, there are some conventions that many readers will expect to see included so you would be advised to follow one of the more popular formats. It would be unusual to see a business plan without an executive summary for example.

Convince Readers With Supporting Documents

Nobody has access to a crystal ball that can provide accurate predictions about how a restaurant is going to run and how conditions that affect the restaurant will change. So when you write your plan you do have to make assumptions about many factors. Rather than simply telling your readers what is going to happen with the business you should also tell them how you came to those conclusions. Set out to prove to readers why the proposed business will work and provide them with documents and references that support your case.


If you want to come across as being organized and professional then you should focus on presentation. Have the plan printed on fine quality paper and present it in a folder. You could even present it as a power point presentation in case you are asked to speak to a group of investors or other interested individuals.

Wherever possible you should find ways to present lengthy or complicated information in simple formats. The use of charts, pictures, graphs and tables can often make information easier to consume.


Your restaurant business plan should be comprehensive. It should set out to convey all of the essential information that readers would expect to find while leaving out anything that is not really necessary.

Appropriate Length

Give some thought to the length of your plan. A suitable length will depend on the scope and size of the restaurant in question. Restaurants are considerably more complicated than many other local service based businesses and therefore justify more detail. There is no right or wrong length as long as everything is included. Judging by the restaurant business plan samples that we have seen we would estimate that around thirty to forty pages is typical in the industry.

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