Starting a home food business can be a big decision for a young entrepreneur. Aside from the fact that the steps involved can be tricky to execute successfully, the food industry is also strict on what and who enters it. This is due to the high regard for safety since whatever food item you sell can affect the health of the people who eat it.
Despite the challenges in front of you, if you believe selling food from home is the right business idea for you, then we’re here to help! Let us help you get to know some of the basics on how to start selling food from home. This guide will discuss all the steps you need to take, from what to note in your business plan, to getting a business license, home/kitchen verification, and marketing even your food.
Let’s dive right in!
Step 1: Have a Solid Business Plan
So, you’ve decided to start selling your food products from your home kitchen. Awesome! And getting started will be a piece of cake, right? Well, whether or not you are actually selling cake, there’s more to selling food than just deciding to follow your grandmother’s recipe and make millions on a beloved staple. While most home food selling businesses are the result of passion or hobby for cooking or baking, you still need to have a solid business plan to be successful at the actual selling part. Below are a few things to consider when making your business plan:
Know what you are selling
Finding your food niche is an important part of selling food from a home kitchen. Do you have a family recipe that you think can take the market by storm? If not, do you have a food product with the ability to have a profound effect on the market, or revolutionize a certain niche? For example, food such as a sugarless cake that tastes as good as any other? If you fall into the category of young entrepreneurs with a recipe that can take the market by storm, you can move to the next step. However, if you’re an entrepreneur with a passion for what you do, but no product idea, below are possible food trends you can use to jumpstart your creativity:
- Gourmet dishes
- Dietary restrictions e.g.,
allergen-free, gluten-free, nut-free.
- Vegan, vegetarian
- Candy, Packaged snacks
- Baked good ingredient kits
- Coffee and tea
After gaining some understanding of what you want to sell, you should focus on the specific food product you want to start making. This is because, in your food niche, you (and your coworkers if you have them) should be very familiar with your product and niche. And the best way to become an expert is to start
Now that you have that perfect food product in mind, you shouldn’t test its viability before rushing into the market at full force. To do this, you need to research your market to know how your product will fare in a
Is there a market for this product?
Having the right recipe is not enough. You have to know whether there are people out there that will buy your food.
The market might be saturated. How is your product different?
No matter how
Is there an untapped niche?
If you think your niche is too saturated for your product idea to make a splash, you can either improve on your food product or find a different, untapped niche. Before you consider this option, you might want to note that different products perform better in front of different audiences and that expanding your marketplace, say, through using an ecommerce platform, can open you up to a wider range of potential customers.
Get to know your competitors
Another part of effective market research is getting to know your competitors. The level of engagement you will get for your store depends on the quality you offer, and the competition you have. While it’s true that the higher your quality with respect to price (aka the better value for money that your customers perceive), the better your engagement will likely be. However, the more competition you have, the fewer people will notice and ultimately choose your product. So, to be effective here, you must be able to answer the following questions:
- Are there other people selling the food you sell from home or are there big enterprises selling the same food products in your area?
- Will competition affect the demand for your specific food?
- What will set your food item apart from other products in the market?
Knowing your competition will help you in your business plan. You can use their mistakes to build up your game and up your plan to be advantageous.
Step 2: Get the Necessary Permits
One of the popular questions young entrepreneurs ask is can you sell food online without a license? The answer depends on the country you live and want to sell in. However, in many major developed countries, you need to get a permit or two before you can start a
A business license is the permit to get to first be able to sell food items to people in the United States. You can check more on getting a business license by checking the US Small Business Administration.
Food handling license and kitchen inspection
To approve your business, food inspectors must check three areas of your home business:
Hygienic food handling
They will check for safe food preparation, cooking, and storage. They will also try to find out whether you cool and/or reheat food items.
Home physical condition
They will check your home based on the following criteria: cleanliness, ventilation, and pest control measures.
Food safety management
They will check for evidence that you adhere to food safety precautions. For example, they will check if you have a HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points) system in place.
To make sure you do not encounter any issues, everybody working with you will require training to an appropriate level. However, if you feel unsure about anything, you should check out our article on getting a business license.
Another important requirement for selling food from home involves the need for food labeling. Any
Knowing food hygiene, safety systems, allergens, and labeling can help you in being legally compliant. Consequently, you would not have any problem legally.
Step 4: Marketing Your Home
Marketing your home food delivery business is another important thing you should consider before getting off the ground. But have no fear! We’re here to help you get the basics down. One thing about selling food from home is you cannot rely on taste testing as a marketing tool. Therefore, you have to connect to your customers in another way. Below are two important ways to market your home food delivery business.
Your home food business will possibly kick off through offline marketing. Although the success of offline marketing will depend highly on the quality of services you offer. You can also generate buzz locally by doing the following:
- Participating in farmers markets
- Partnering with restaurants to host a tasting event.
- Hosting a private dinner/dessert for food influencers.
Social media is the easiest way to market your
The best thing about using social media is that it is free. Therefore, you can easily and creatively put your business out. However, to introduce your home business using social media, make sure the social media account has your business name and contact details.
Step 4: Making Sales
After spending so much time planning, the most important part is how to make sales from your newly founded
Gaining access to new customers
Using the tool of ecommerce can expose your business to multiple locations all over the world wide web. But you shouldn’t consider your business and either or. You can sell to customers both through a physical storefront and online.
According to statistics, before buying a product, 95% of people check out some product and store reviews. Therefore, by using ecommerce, you can enjoy the review features that it has. Consequently, you can easily get reviews from your existing customers to convince your potential customers that you can deliver quality services
Another thing you have to consider with an ecommerce or physical ordering system is how to deliver your products. You can make use of delivery companies, courier services, etc. However, choose the delivery service that assures the fast delivery service needed in the food industry. You can also utilize the options such as
The food industry is a challenging business idea due to its regulation of what and who enters it. Therefore, starting a home food business can be a little tricky for many people. To enter the business space, you need to consider a lot of things. Therefore, this article discussed every step you need to take to be successful as a