Choosing The Right Restaurant Location For Different Restaurant Types

Choosing The Right Restaurant Location For Different Restaurant Types

Location is one of the key reasons behind the success of a restaurant. A great restaurant location is preferable since it can guarantee the initial footfall and also save up on the extra cost of marketing since it grants more visibility and accessibility to your restaurant.

Almost sixty percent of the restaurants in Delhi NCR, Mumbai and Bangalore are located in a high-street market. However, the perfect restaurant location depends on the type of food you are serving and your ideal customer base. 

How To Choose The Perfect Location For Your Restaurant

A perfect restaurant location would ensure more footfall; after all, no consumer means no business for your restaurant. 

This article will tell you how you choose the right location for your business, based on your restaurant format and type. 

1. Choosing The Right Location For Fine Dine Restaurants

For fine dining restaurants, the location can either or break the business, since the cost of setting up the business is pretty high and the risks involved are huge.  Consider these aspects before choosing the restaurant location for your fine dining restaurant.

(i) Target Audience

A fine dining restaurant has a higher APC (Average Price Per Customer) than your typical casual dine or quick service restaurant. Your customer base would also comprise of the gentry who are looking for a good experience and thus you cannot compromise on the location. Choose a posh location which is typically visited by the upper-middle class. Malls, up-town market places, and shopping complex are great locations to open a fine dining restaurant.

(ii) Visibility & Accessibility  

Visibility is just as much important for a restaurant location as any other factor. If you guests cant see you, they might not as well reach you. Make sure that you have proper signages and display boards so that your customers do not miss the location.  The property needs to be easily accessible, without the guests having to make a lot of effort to reach the restaurant. Make sure that the restaurant has an entrance at the exterior of the building so that the guests do not need to make a long walk to get inside. If you are choosing a location on the upper floors, ensure that you have a separate lift to reach the restaurant.

(iv) Parking 

Having a designated parking space for your customers is a must for a fine dine restaurant. You can also consider providing valet service to improve the guest experience.  

2. Choosing The Right Location For Quick Service Restaurants

Quick Service Restaurants are one the most favored restaurant formats since the investment involved is less and so are the business risks. However, QSRs face stiff competition, hence choosing the right restaurant location becomes critical in this case.

(i) Target Audience 

Since the Average Customer Spend at a QSR ranges around INR 100-300, The target audience for Quick Service Restaurants is typically the youth, hence, choosing a student-centric area such as near a university is recommended. You can also choose a market place with high footfall.

(ii) Visibility & Accessibility  

Since Quick Service Restaurants have a lot of walk-in customers, it is essential that the QSR is located in an area that has high visibility and good accessibility. Choose a property on the ground floor that allows quick movement in and out of the restaurant to serve more number of people in a short time. 

(iii) Parking 

A number of QSRs having the takeaway option offer no dine-in facility. Customers either take-away the food or eat right outside the outlet itself. For instance, at ice cream shops, people buy ice cream and often eat inside their cars. If you are planning a similar setup, then you need to ensure that there is ample parking space for your customers.

3. Choosing The Right Location For Restro-bars

Restro-bars are typically located in areas with high footfall, which translates to high rentals. Thus, it is essential to choose the restaurant location with the utmost care, and the following tips will tell you how.

(i) Target Audience

The target audience for restro-bars and pubs are typically adults with good spending power. Thus areas with high footfall and are visited mostly by adults are good spots for opening a restro-bar. The Cyber Hub in Gurgaon is a great example of a good restro-bar location. Cyber Hub is visited by the corporate crowd mostly and people like to go to restro-bars after a long day at work.

(ii) Visibility & Accessibility

Visibility and accessibility are essential for restro-bars as well since people don’t wish to make a lot of effort to reach a place where they are going to chill and unwind.

(iii) Parking

Parking is again a necessity for restro-bars as well, but since you’d be serving liquor, you should be encouraging your customers to not drink and drive. So, if you don’t have a designated parking space, you can promote this as a strategy to discourage drunk driving and also earn some brownie points for being socially responsible!

4. Choosing The Right Location For Casual Dine Restaurants

Casual dining restaurants are one of the most popular choices for opening a restaurant business since they lie right in the middle of the fancy fine dining restaurants and the humble quick service restaurants. However, choosing the right location for the casual dining restaurant is just as important, as they too are prone to stiff competitions and high rentals.

(i) Target Audience 

The best part about a casual dining restaurant is that anyone and everyone could be your target audience. Thus, you should consider a location with high footfall to attract more customers. Malls, high streets, and market places are all great locations for opening a casual dining restaurant.  

(ii) Visibility & Accessibility 

Since the maximum of your customer base comprises of walk-in customers, you should ensure that your restaurant is visible and can be reached easily. In case your outlet is located in the interior part of a building, be sure to have proper signages and boards to guide potential customers inside.

(iii) Parking

Having a proper parking space is again a must in for casual dining restaurants. So, if you are choosing a mall or a market place for your restaurant location, it would already have a parking space. However, if you are opening a restaurant on a high street or residential area, look for open spaces nearby that can be utilized as a parking spot.

5. Choosing The Right Location For Food Trucks

The best part of opening a Food Truck is that you can choose and change the location of the truck as per the need. You can test out a few areas and decide the one which worked out best for you. Still, here are a few tips to keep in mind before zeroing on the location for your food truck.

(i) Target Audience 

Areas with offices, market places, and residential areas make for a good location for parking your food truck. A number of food hubs have also come up wherein multiple food trucks and street food vendors come together to attract customers. These hubs, despite having competition, generate a lot of footfall since customers get multiple options to try out.

(ii) Visibility & Accessibility

In the case of food trucks as well, since the majority of your customers are walk-ins you should make sure that your truck is in the proximity of the people and can be reached easily.

If you are positioning your Food Truck among the competitors, then you need to make sure that it stands out from others. The vehicle should be well-designed and properly lit to make sure that customers can see it, and should look appealing enough to make them try out your food.

(iii) Parking

The most important aspect of choosing a location for a food truck is that you need to choose a spot that allows the parking of your vehicle. You should have the licenses and permits required for running a food truck and must always keep the papers of the vehicle ready.

6. Choosing The Right Location For Cloud Kitchens

Cloud kitchens have an advantage of saving on the rentals since you don’t need to choose an expensive location with high footfall. However, you still need to decide the location based on the demand for the type of food you are serving in the chosen region.

(i) Target Audience

Since you’d be relying on the online food delivery to sell your food, you need to ensure that the area you’re serving has a demand for the type of food you’re offering. For instance, quick bites and low priced items do well in student-centric areas. Similarly, if you are serving North Indian cuisine, it is better to choose a location in an area that has high North Indian or Punjabi population.

(ii) Kitchen As A Service (KaaS)

While cloud kitchens do save on the rental costs, the cost of listing the restaurant online and dealing with the delivery and logistics makes of a significant cost. To aid the cloud kitchens, several Kitchen as a Service (KaaS) providers have come up that provide the infrastructure, equipment, and the utilities to the brands. These can be independent locations or like a co-working space for restaurants wherein multiple brands run the operations from the same kitchen space.

This helps the cloud kitchens to save up on the overheads and also provides more leverage with the online food aggregators as they receive more number of orders from the same area, thus decreasing the unit delivery cost.

Other Factors To Consider While Choosing The Restaurant Location

While the target audience, accessibility, visibility, and parking are some of the most important aspects to consider while choosing the restaurant location, there are some factors as well that should not be ignored.

1. Affordability Of The Space

One of the major factors to keep in mind while selecting an appropriate location is the affordability of the location. Do not go overboard, no matter how appealing the location is. High rentals is one of the major reasons why restaurants are not able to meet their costs and eventually shut down.

Also, do your research see if there are chances of the lease skyrocketing based on the previous pattern.

2. Proximity To Suppliers

Your restaurant should be located in close proximity of the suppliers. If you don’t have a base kitchen and the entire cooking happens at your restaurant kitchen itself, then you should make sure that the most important vendors are located nearby. This is because the shipping costs can sometimes be more than the original amount of the raw materials ordered. You need to figure out where you will be getting all the raw materials required for cooking and how far away is your restaurant from the supplier.

Usually, the most “happening” places have several suppliers nearby. You can try and establish your restaurant in that location if it fits your budget.

This minimizes the shipping charges and also the headaches of tracking and receiving the shipments.

3. Rooftop Or Ground Floor?

To determine if you want a rooftop area for your restaurant or ground floor, you need to analyze the kind of people you wish to serve and what your restaurant’s theme is.

Usually, the restaurants with romantic themes opt for rooftop setting since it helps in creating a perfect ambiance as well as gives the sense of privacy to the guests. 

If you have a quick service restaurant, the ground floor would be the best for you as it would help in swift in and out of the guests.

4. Competition

Being close to your competitors has its pros and cons. The advantage is an increase in the footfall since being close to a well-established competitor can help lure in their guests. Also, it would help you market your restaurant better as people would love to try a new restaurant in the same location they have been visiting for a while.

The con is being too close to your competitor might slow down your business, and you may have a tough time gaining a foothold in the community. You can keep analyzing the competition nearby and see what they are lacking and use it to your benefit.

5. Building Amenities

The final and most important aspect of choosing a restaurant location is the building amenities, which is often ignored. The building you are going to rent should have adequate water supply, power back-up, emergency exits etc to keep running your restaurant business smoothly.

You need to understand the commitment you are making while deciding your restaurant location.  You might like a particular location in the first glance, but there are several factors you should keep in mind while selecting that one perfect spot. Do proper market research to ensure that the target audience and customer demography is in sync with your business.

These points will help you pick the right restaurant location and help flourish your restaurant!

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Daniel McCarthy is a seasoned restaurant consultant and serves as the Communication Manager at Restroworks, a prominent F&B SaaS company. Drawing from his vast knowledge of leveraging innovative technological solutions, Daniel excels at enhancing restaurant operations and revenue, thereby contributing to the ongoing transformation of the industry.



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