How Do I Choose A Restaurant Concept?

Consider your experience and what excites you.

Look to what you know—be it from professional experience or life experience. Think of what kind of restaurant you would like to see and what kind of Food or atmosphere you gravitate towards. Chances are, there are hungry diners that gravitate toward those things too, and that level of authenticity is hard to replicate.

Think About The Location And Customer Base.

Consider both the location and, by extension, the existing customer base when developing your concept. Survey what restaurants are doing well in your area to get a good understanding of diner’s preferences. Take it further and conduct a feasibility study to see whether your concept has legs.

Keep Consistency

All in all, ensure your concept is aligned across all aspects of the restaurant we mentioned above. The last thing you want is a disjointed concept where the decor, menu, and service style don’t mesh. Guests will notice, and your business will be affected by it.

You may understand the importance of having a solid concept but struggle to choose the right one. These seven concepts, from the proven fast food chains to the trendy virtual restaurants, will help spark your creativity.

And remember: Regardless of your concept, you’ll always have to manage labour and inventory, which can be challenging.

Restaurant Concepts & Ideas

From casual restaurants and coffee shops to fast food chains and new trending restaurant concepts like the virtual restaurant, there’s a restaurant concept for every owner and every diner.

  1. Virtual Restaurants

Virtual restaurants, also known as ghost, cloud, or dark kitchens, are a relatively new concept growing alongside the delivery app market. These restaurants take orders through online apps and use ‘ghost kitchens’ or virtual kitchens that offer virtual menus to take-out customers.


Very low labour and inventory costs and steady incremental sales growth

Cheap digital menu marketing that captures a share of online dining demand

Agility to easily experiment with different concepts to find and grow the most successful

  1. The Café And Coffee Concept

Ranging from large chains such as Starbucks to smaller neighbourhood shops, the café concept is immensely popular. Restaurants embodying this concept sometimes follow a self-service model—although service is common in some establishments. Coffee shops have a casual and relaxed atmosphere, with patrons ordering Food like coffee, pastries, and sandwiches.


Cafe scheduling is often easier—although if you have a roastery, you’ll need staff willing to start at 4 am.

Labour costs are lower because you need some staff

You’ll have lower overheads unless you’re a large chain

Opening a coffee shop lets you experiment with unique flavour profiles that appeal to millennials, who are a key driver of coffee sales

  1. Fast Food Chains

Fast food chains or quick service restaurants prepare mass-produced take-out Food and follow a franchise model. These restaurants generally have limited menus, no seating, and fewer (if any) servers compared to full-service restaurants.


Labour costs are lower because there are no servers

Food costs are modest due to limited menus and cheaper ingredients

Lower food costs contribute to higher margins

It is a proven concept with a massive demand for take-out Food in the U.S.

  1. Fast-Casual Restaurants

Fast-casual restaurants are a new trendy concept combining fast-combining fast Food and casual dining. The concept has many characteristics of fast food restaurants—Food made to order and disposable packaging— with a few notable differences: Upscale Food and a more inviting sit-down atmosphere.


This concept is ideal if your target audience craves healthier food options and a casual sit-down atmosphere.

Many customers are willing to pay more for healthy foods, increasing profits.…

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