As a result of the recent food trends and increasing health awareness, people want to eat healthier and more organic. This has led to a boom in the food industry with an increased demand for new and successful business ideas every day. And one of the trending ideas might be to start a food business from home, which is not as easy as it sounds and it requires some research, planning, and preparation before the first steps can be taken. Are you pondering on how to start a food business from home? If yes, then you are at the perfect destination to learn the same.
This article is all about how to start a food business from home with less risk and more profit, without the need for any previous experience in this area. So if you’re thinking of starting your own food business or just want to know how to keep reading!
Points to ponder on before starting a food business
Starting a food business from home can be very fulfilling, especially if you are passionate about cooking food. Here are some tips to consider before you dwell on how to start a food business at home.
- You should decide on whether you want to start a mess or an online business at home as the initial step. If deciding to go with a mess, in that case, you should focus on creating the right ambiance at the space where guests are going to dine in.
- Ensuring you have all the necessary equipment and utensils is compulsory. Otherwise, you will have to buy more utensils and upgrade your kitchen with the necessary equipment.
- Focusing on the packaging strategy is vital for both the online food business and mess. Using good quality packaging can help in impressing your first-time customers and may even boost your credibility.
- Assess your skill and estimate how much order you will receive. This will let you decide on how many staff you will have to hire for running your business smoothly.
- You should learn thoroughly about the target customers, how to start a food business from home, legal and financial requirements, your business plan, and your marketing strategy before setting foot in the food industry.
How to start a food business from home in India?
Starting a food business from home can be an excellent way to start your own business in India. You can tailor your operation to suit your tastes and preferences as well as the needs of the community. India being a vast country has different tastes in food ranging from diverse tastes in each part of the country. With the change in business dynamics, many are either switching to or trying their luck at the home-based food business.
Comprehending how to start a food business from home is essential if you want to take part in the enormous competition in the food industry. Let’s see the fundamental steps for starting a food business from home.
- Creating a unique niche
Create a specific type, or unique niche, of food that you decide to sell. This should be something you’re an expert in preparing so that you can make that specific cuisine in a way that’s better or different from foods currently on the market. A food business requires a USP(unique selling point) to attract customers to it, so choose it wisely based on your location.
- Spend time on market research
Spend maximum time researching thoroughly about the market to identify your target market, understand their needs and locate critical areas for delivery.
- Prepare a solid business plan
Even if you are starting a food business from home, you need a solid business plan. A well-built business plan should include a budget plan, menu plan, and even marketing strategies. Depending on your location, you can include meal plans that work well for your service area.
- Choose a catchy name
Select a memorable and catchy name for the business to establish unique branding for your business.
- Finalize payment methods
You will have to finalize what payment methods you will accept. Dealing only in cash might lead to fewer customers as nowadays more and more people are relying on online payments. To reach out to more people, enable online payment through BHIM and UPI options.
- Get licenses and permits
Getting licenses and permits is mandatory for running any business. It is wise to follow the rules and regulations by your state that are expected to be followed by any new business type. You should be aware of these rules so that you can take the necessary actions to fulfill them.
- Purchase necessary equipment and raw materials
Ensure your business kitchen is equipped with necessary utensils and high-quality equipment. If not purchase necessary utensils and upgrade equipment to guarantee a better quality of food that can be prepared in a shorter time. You should ascertain if you have good storage devices for your ingredients and food.
- Market your food business
To acquire customers you should focus on advertising your food business. You may use your networks of friends, colleagues, and neighbors to get a customer base. Giving away your menu pamphlets with prices and offers will attract more customers. Give offers and extra services for promotions from time to time to gain more customers and exposure.
It is essential to make your presence on social media to reach more potential customers. In today’s internet-savvy world, social media plays an important role in marketing businesses. Keep your online profiles simple, precise, focusing on your menu and delivery areas in a neat manner, and ensure it is minimalistic. Give your business a good boost by describing your products, adding attractive pictures, and adding relevant content.
- Get customer feedback
Get your first customer feedback by trying to give away a few free meals to your neighbors and friends. This will also help you in gaining some publicity through word-of-mouth, which ultimately leads to more customers.
How to start a food delivery business from home?
Now, more than ever, food delivery businesses play an important role. During the COVID-19 pandemic, they are performing a critical function in reaching new customers in a constantly changing landscape of businesses. Therefore, this is the right time to start a home-based food delivery business. Have a look at the below steps to understand how to start a food delivery business from home:
- Decide on the appropriate niche
- Define target market
- Determine the budget required for a license, website, delivery needs, etc.
- Develop business and meal plans
- Create marketing strategy
- Strengthen delivery network
What certificates do you need to sell food?
The essential certificates, licenses, or permits required to sell food are:
- Shop and Establishment Certificate – Required in certain states like Maharashtra, Kerala, etc.
- Food Safety and Standards Authority of India(FSSAI) License – For smaller establishments, only FSSAI registration is required whereas larger establishments need an FSSAI license
- Trade License – Obtained from local municipal office
- Fire and Safety License – Clearance certificate from Fire and Safety Department
- GST Registration – Require if the generated income exceeds the annual registration threshold
- Trademark Registration – Registering name or logo of business for brand exclusivity
- No Objection Certificate(NOC) from Food and Health Department and/or Society
- Environment Clearance – From State Pollution Control Board
- Eating Hours License – Approval from State Police Commission for operating a mess at home
How do you get a food license?
The FSSAI license(food license) is issued by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India used to secure the laws relating to food. Also, to establish science-based standards for food, to ensure control of their manufacture, storage, distribution, sale, and import, to make sure the availability of food for human consumption and other food-related issues.
A food license in India can be applied directly at the Food and Health Department or you could apply to the Food Safety Compliance System(FoSCoS) portal. The application must be accompanied by all required documents like blueprint or layout of the location, contact details of the owners, the list and details of the equipment and machinery types, etc. The application fee for a new license is Rs 7500.
What food can you make and sell from home?
In the present-day world, almost everyone is health conscious and loves to eat homemade food. As a solopreneur who aims to sell from home, knowing the easy food to sell from home is as mandatory as learning how to start a food business from home. In addition, researching the market aids in figuring out what’s going to sell easily in your service area. Keeping that in mind, though, here are some easy food items to sell:
- Homemade breakfast, lunch, and dinner
- Freshly baked, bakery products and confectionaries
- Home processed dairy items like cheese, butter, and ghee
- Candy and packaged snacks that everyone loves to munch on
- Chocolates, cakes, and desserts
- Homemade instant mixes
- Culinary items, namely spices, pickles, grocery items, etc.
Where can I sell my homemade food online?
You can either sell your homemade food on your website or app to help with taking orders and ensuring order fulfillment. Consequently, you will have to create a ready-made food website and list your menu online along with the prices of the items. Compare your products with your competitors, and analyze the market to set competitive food prices. Partnering with a payment platform ensures smooth transactions if you want to allow online ordering.
Setting up a website can be a cumbersome job if you are least interested in technology. In such circumstances, it is best to join forces with other e-commerce food platforms. If you want to partner with a platform like Swiggy or Zomato, register on their portal, and complete the verification process.
How to start a food business from home with Swiggy and Zomato?
The competition in the food industry is massive. Hence, it will be quite difficult for foodpreneurs who are trying to establish their small food business from home. Partnering with Swiggy and Zomato are effective methods to enter the market. Swiggy and Zomato are platforms that establish a bridge between your business and customers.
The following are steps on how to start a food business from home with Swiggy:
- Login to the Swiggy website to register your business. Select the Partner with us option at the bottom.
- Fill in all the details mentioned which are Establishment Name, Name of the Owner, Contact Number of the Owner, Email Id of the Owner, City, GST Registration Details, Business Entity Name, Date of Registration of the Business, Address Details, and FSSAI Registration Details.
- Upload mentioned documents for verification purposes. Once submitted all details, Swiggy representatives will verify all details. Later, you can proceed to sign the partnership agreement.
- Your business will be listed in Swiggy within three weeks of signing the agreement. Once listed in Swiggy, you will receive the notification via SMS and email.
- You will have to ensure Swiggy’s commission payments are done on time.
You can partner with Zomato by following the above-mentioned steps as both Swiggy and Zomato have similar registration processes. Once registered successfully, you can sell your homemade food online.
How do you advertise homemade food?
You can advertise homemade food products in various publications and other listings that target your niche audience. Homemade food manufacturers derive much of their success through local sales, so advertising in local newspapers is a good idea. You may also increase awareness through catered service at parties or other gatherings depending on the success of your food products. You may also advertise your food online as going digital can drive more sales now.
Do you find it difficult to advertise your food online? Not aware of how to create a perfect digital marketing strategy for your business? You may find understanding how to start a food business from home is a piece of cake compared to preparing a suitable marketing strategy for your business.
Fret not, Cafe Nurture is at your service. Our primary goal is to create a space to nurture your dreams and brand. Getting started with Cafe Nurture is your first step to a well-versed marketing strategy. We are here in each step of promotion, thereby, nurturing your business. We are in this together simplifying all the processes required for your business to go online and taking your business to new heights.
How much profit should you make selling food?
There is no right amount of profit you should make by selling food. Nevertheless, for a small food business, you might make about 10%-20% if running successfully.
Can I sell food products without Fssai?
No, you cannot sell food products without FSSAI. However, for a small establishment, you may only need FSSAI registration while a larger establishment requires FSSAI registration.
Can I get an FSSAI license online?
Yes, you can get an FSSAI license online by submitting applications on the Food Safety Compliance System(FoSCoS) portal. The application must be accompanied by the required and all essential documents.
Can I sell my homemade food on Swiggy?
Yes, you may sell your homemade food on any food-delivery platform. Be it Swiggy, Zomato, Uber Eats, or any other platform.