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How to Find the Best Restaurant Location

The restaurant business is a profitable industry if you can survive the first couple years of business. Owning and operating a restaurant successfully takes a unique food idea, good management, a detailed, well-thought out business plan, and a great location, among other things.

Location is absolutely key to a restaurant’s success, and though finding the right spot can be challenging, it will be well worth it in the end.

Here are a few tips to find the right location:

1. Demographics

There are two important factors to consider about your restaurant’s location: what demographic your restaurant will attract and the demographic of the locations you are interested in. For instance, if your restaurant attracts a younger generation, it is probably not a wise idea to look for a location in a suburban, family-oriented town.

Similarly, if your restaurant relies on its outdoor presence to attract customers, no only do you need quality patio furniture for your restaurant, but you also need to be in a city area instead of a retail shopping center.

2. Competition

One of the best tools you can use to your advantage is by scoping out the locations your competitors have chosen, for in most cases, it is actually to your benefit to be near competitors. While being in the ideal location for foot traffic is important, it is equally important to be near other restaurants who can help bring customers to your restaurant.

It is more than likely that the existing restaurants, if they are performing well, chose the location based on research, thus you and your restaurant can benefit from their conclusions. Additionally, their marketing efforts also benefit your business, because their marketing techniques will incidentally bring customers to your business.

3. Parking

If your restaurant lacks sufficient parking, it can be a huge drawback, cutting into your profits. If your parking lot is too small, and there is no nearby or easy location for people to park, more often than not, your customers will leave and head to a different restaurant that meets their needs.

However, if you are looking at locations in an urban area where most people walk, use public transportation, or use parking structures, then parking is not as large of an issue. But, if you rely on parking structures and public transportation, it might be a wise idea to find a location relatively near both.

4. Building History

Another factor to consider is the history of a building you are interested in renting. If there have been a string of failed restaurants in the building’s history, even if the building meets all of your criteria, it might be a wise idea to find another space. Even though the space looks great on paper, for some reason, no restaurant has been able to survive, and that is something important to listen to.

Looking into these tips can help you understand where the most effective place might be for your restaurant’s success.

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