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A crepe business could do well in your area and bring you a good income in an industry that holds your interest. However, 25 percent of restaurant businesses close or change hands within their first year of business and that increases to three out of five over a five-year span. Because of those bleak statistics, take care in planning your crepe business. Be well-prepared to ensure you are one of the businesses that succeeds.
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Research the market in your area to make sure your idea is viable. Business success starts with market research. Are there other crepe businesses in your area? Is there enough demand for crepes to support your business? If possible, hire a market research company to do this research for you.
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Consider whether you want a franchise or start an independent business. If you want a ready-made plan for your business, consider purchasing a franchise. You'll have to pay for the franchise, but you'll get additional training and brand recognition. You can also start an independent crepe business if that's what you want to do.
Write a business plan. A business plan guides your business from point A to point B. It's essential for running your business, and many lenders want to see your business plan before they will give you funding.
Contact your local bank for financing. Find a bank that offers SBA loans, which are low-interest loans for business owners. The government backs them, which makes you less of a risk to the bank.
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Purchase or lease a space for your business. Small crepe businesses will do well in areas with a lot of foot traffic, such as malls or other shopping centers. People want to stop for a snack when they're shopping. Contact the local shopping centers in your area to see if they have available space. Compare the cost per square foot to see which offers the best deal.
Purchase the equipment you need. Set up your business with crepe pans, refrigerators and other items essential for a crepe business. You may also want to purchase tables and chairs for your customers, but this depends on your location. You may be able to lease your equipment, which can reduce your upfront expenses.
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Create unique crepe recipes to draw new customers in. Think of a signature crepe for your business. What will you be known for? Create both sweet and savory recipes to satisfy all kinds of palates.
Advertise your business. Get the word out that you are open. Offer discounts to draw customers in.
Remember that, as a food business, you will receive a visit from the food safety inspector. Read up on food safety and make sure that you follow all regulations.
- Remember that, as a food business, you will receive a visit from the food safety inspector. Read up on food safety and make sure that you follow all regulations.
Maggie McCormick is a freelance writer. She lived in Japan for three years teaching preschool to young children and currently lives in Honolulu with her family. She received a B.A. in women's studies from Wellesley College.