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By Debra Weinryb
Are you a talented baker looking to start or grow your business? A bakery business plan is a great place to start. A good business plan will help you outline all the steps necessary to make your bakery successful – like hiring a talented management team, building an effective marketing plan, and securing the technology you need to boost sales, like a bakery POS.
After you’ve decided on the type of bakery you want to open – whether that’s a bakery cafe, food truck, specialty bakery, or another type – it’s time to get into all the fine details.
Your business plan is a crucial part of starting your new restaurant because it will help you structure your ideas and goals, what types of products you will sell, what your marketing strategy will be, how your business will operate, and so much more.
To help you get started, we’ve covered the key elements of how to write a bakery business plan in a section-by-section format. We’ll explain everything from how to describe your bakery offerings and menu items, to tips on how to make financial projections to attract potential investors. Follow along by downloading our bakery business plan template and customize it to fit your needs.
In this article, we will cover:
Bring your bakery concept to life with this customizable bakery business plan template.
There are many benefits to writing a bakery business plan. First, it helps you better evaluate your business ideas and goals through research and documentation. Second, a bakery plan helps you build a structure for identifying next steps to bring your vision to life. You can always refer to your business plan to stay on track to achieve the goals you’ve set out.
Writing a business plan for a bakery will also help you figure out what you need to grow your company. You’ll gain a clear understanding of the equipment, supplies, and capital you will need to make your dreams a reality. By making a strong and well-thought-out plan, you’ll be more likely to secure funding from banks, potential investors, and lenders.
Look at any bakery business plan sample, and you will see how much information can be conveyed to your reader in an easy-to-understand manner. You might be surprised by all the components you overlooked! Now’s the time to think about improving your bakery.
Writing a business plan for a bakery is no easy feat. You have to think about all the various aspects of your business – like how often you need to order ingredients, how you will market your business to reach new customers, and the amount of staff you will need to hire. Essentially, you’re putting together a manual for your bakery’s success, and it needs to convince investors and new business partners to support your business.
To help you get started, we put together a free bakery business plan template. Acting as a roadmap, our template provides step-by-step instructions for how to think through all of the key elements of a bakery business – including a market analysis, operations plan, marketing and PR plan, financial analysis and projections, and more. You can use the tips in each section to learn how to write a bakery business plan.
To help you fill in your own business plan, here we’ll cover what you need to include in each section.
Your executive summary is the most important part of your business plan, even though it’s usually written last. The goal of this section is to give an overview of what will be discussed in your business plan and to entice readers (or investors) to learn more.
You will describe your bakery’s mission statement, proposed concept, your target market, and explain how the uniqueness of your bakery will ensure your success. For example, you can explain any special traits of your team that will help your bakery grow, like exceptional customer service or attention to detail when preparing pastries for guests.
Additionally, you will offer financial highlights of how you plan to use funding from potential investors. Perhaps you will spend money on the design of your bakery, purchasing initial inventory, or covering overhead expenses. You can also include a chart to show how potential funding will help increase your bakery’s revenue over time.
While this section is important, remember to keep it to the point. Aim for around 600 words to entice the reader to keep reading the rest of your business plan. You can also check out a bakery business plan sample for inspiration.
Your company overview section presents a summary of your bakery’s history and why you opened it in the first place. For example, you can write about how your bakery is different from your competitors – such as your team’s impressive credentials, or how you’re the only business in your area selling gluten-free and vegan baked goods.
You should also include important details like your bakery’s legal structure, founding team members, location, and milestones to date. Milestones are goals that you met, like opening your first bakery location, launching a website, or hiring your first head baker.
Lastly, mention the type of bakery you plan to run. Your service type will be important as you write your bakery plan, helping define the space and equipment you need, and how you’ll interact with guests. For example, if you run a bakery cafe, you’ll need a sit-down area, as well as a front-of-house and back-of-house area. If you operate a food truck bakery, you’ll need to buy or rent a truck so your bakery will be able to move around.
This section focuses on the customers that you plan to serve. For example, do you plan to bake cakes and pastries for weddings? What about school events, birthday parties, or private events? Maybe you’re a neighborhood bakery that relies on foot traffic from your regular customers?
If you rely on grocery stores, farmer’s markets, or restaurants to sell your baked goods, you can mention that too. Supplying products like breads, biscottis, brownies, bagels, or other baked pastries to restaurants will also help you grow your customer base faster.
After you’ve defined your target market, you can go into more detail by describing your customer personas:
Once you’ve outlined your target market’s unique requirements, make sure you write how you will meet each of their needs.
The Business Offerings and Menu section focuses on what type of baked goods you will offer customers. Whether you offer fresh bread, cookies, or cakes, discuss every detail about what you plan to sell. Make sure to provide an explanation for why you sell these products, and how your delicious goods will drive foot traffic to your bakery.
Remember to always write in layman’s terms so even if someone is unfamiliar with your bakery, they can still get excited about your products. To do so, avoid industry jargon, buzzwords, or technical knowledge that might not be common knowledge to investors.
Here are a few questions you can answer when writing out your business offerings:
This section is where you expand on your business goals, including what the management team will look like and what technology you’ll need.
For your team, you should provide details like whether you will be hiring full-time or part-time staff, what their roles will be, and at what hours your bakery will be open. For technology, you can list restaurant equipment that will help you get your job done well every day. For example, you might need mixers for blending batter, a stone deck oven for making bread, and a refrigerator for storing eggs, milk, and other important items.
You can also list operational milestones that you want to achieve over the coming months to ensure your bakery operates successfully. For example, you can mention when you want to finalize your lease agreement, begin construction for a bakery redesign, or mark the date of your bakery’s grand opening.
You’ll need a solid marketing and PR strategy to enter your target market and attract new customers. In this section, you will explain the steps you plan to take to reach potential guests.
Aside from coming up with a catchy bakery name, there are many ways you can draw in an audience.
Social media platforms can be used to develop unique and fun posts about daily bakery specials, or tease the latest products that are “coming soon.”
Asking customers to leave a review and spread the word is an effective way to market your bakery. If your baked goods speak for themselves, you will likely benefit from this marketing strategy.
Making sure you’re found on Google is imperative for a bakery. You’ll definitely want people to find your storefront, and not your competitors. By working on a search engine optimization (SEO) strategy, you can be found when people type into Google terms like “local bakery” or “bakery near me.” Keeping your website up-to-date, accessible, and user friendly can also increase engagement.
For the last section of your bakery business plan, you will focus on the financial projections for your business. You’ll outline the potential costs for ingredients, equipment, technology, bills, and salaries that will keep your bakery running. For example, costs might include pastry products, like flour, sugar, butter, and cream. They may also include baking materials like cake pans, stand mixers, rolling pins, and measuring cups.
You’ll also include several documents in your financial analysis, such as an income statement, balance sheet, and a cash flow statement. After listing all of the costs of your bakery design, inventory, and other working expenses, you will then project the time it will take to achieve a profit. Remember to keep your numbers realistic, so you can let investors know how you could actually use their support to grow your business.
A bakery business plan is the best way to start or grow your business – it helps finetune your business concept and identify your target market. If you look at any bakery business plan sample, you will see many important sections that help guide a bakery to achieve success.
Once you have finished writing your bakery plan, you can refer back to it on a regular basis to make sure you are keeping up with the goals you set. Remember, that you’ll need to update your document if your market should change. For example, if customers start demanding more gluten-free products, you can update your plan on how your bakery will meet this requirement.
While writing a bakery business plan can feel tedious at times, remember to think of it as a fun and creative project. There are so many ways to open or expand your bakery business! If you need inspiration, use our bakery business plan template that can be customized to meet your specific business needs.
Debra is the Content Marketing Specialist at TouchBistro, where she writes about the latest food and restaurant industry trends. In her spare time, Debra enjoys baking and eating together with family and friends. Her favorite creations include chocolate cake with Italian meringue buttercream, mile-high lemon meringue pie, and fresh naan with tahini sauce.
By Katherine Pendrill
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