How To Start Your Own Bar And Grill

Obtain All Necessary Permits And Licenses

How to Start a Sports Bar Business | Including Free Sports Bar Business Plan Template

You might be wondering what licenses do you need to open a bar. If youre located in the USA, there are a series of permits that youll almost definitely need to start operating your bar. Requirements change slightly depending on your state, but besides your EIN, you should also try to get:

  • A liquor license: Youre legally required to have a liquor license to sell alcoholic beverages, and it will also determine what type of drinks you can get from your supplier. It can take a while to get this license sorted out, so you should get in touch with your states Alcoholic Beverage Control agency as soon as possible.

  • Registration with the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau: Also known as the TTB, they require that you keep a record of all the alcohol that you get from your suppliers. Its important that you follow this procedure, as not doing so can cost you up to $10,000.

  • A food-service license: Whether or not you decide to get this license will depend on your business concept, but if you do, and want to meet food and safety regulations, its a necessity.

Some other permits you might need depending on where youre located:

  • Certificate of Occupancy

  • Music Permit

What Is The Growth Potential For A Sports Bar Business

With the popularity and exposure of sports constantly expanding, bars which cater to sports fans can be quite popular, as well. This also means there can and will be added competition. Your sports bar can be very successful if you have a good location, offer top quality entertainment, food, and drinks. Research your area to see which sports are most popular, if you would have enough regular customers, and what food and drinks fare best with your potential customers. The initial leg work will best prepare you for establishing a successful sports bar. Your growth potential will hinge on these numbers.

Choosing A Bar Concept

One of the most fundamental things you need to open a bar is an idea of your own. Strive to set your bar apart from all the rest from the start. Differentiation is critical in a saturated market. Remember that what makes you different isnt a gimmick.

Get inspired by our bar promotion ideas or consider building your USP around the following:

  • Being the lowest priced bar in town.

  • Offering the highest quality products.

  • Showcasing only specialty drinks or beer.

  • Offering unique entertainment, such as karaoke or open mic nights.

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Common Legal Hurdles Bar Businesses Face

Health and safety issues

A health department or other entity may require regular inspection and failure of an inspection could result in shutting down your bar.

Liability claims

Businesses are a common target for slip-and-fall claims, as well as other liability legal attacks. To protect yourself, be sure to separate your personal assets from the business. In the U.S. and LatAm registering as a corporation would protect you in many of these cases.

Permits and licensure requirement changes

Not every country allows existing businesses to grandfather in from old licensure requirements. Many countries throughout Asia are undergoing alcohol law reform, which can impact your business immediately.

Employment struggles

In the U.S., employment laws are strict and changing constantly. Some laws govern how long employees can work when they need breaks, and what safety precautions you must have in place.

Paying Business Taxes

Many business owners dont realize how important it is to pay businesses taxes quarterly in the U.S. Failing to pay business tax or plan for an annual payment can financially and legally ruin your bar.

If youre handling this for the first time, it is best to contact a notary or business attorney for assistance.

How To Research Effectively Before Opening Your Own Bar

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This article was co-authored by Joe Simmons. Joe Simmons is a Corporate Trainer based in West Palm Beach, Florida. Joe specializes in operations management, leadership, learning and development, and employee training to help employees become high-performing teams. He holds a Bachelors degree in Marketing from The University of South Florida. Joes coaching has helped numerous organizations with employee retention, revenue growth, and team productivity.There are 12 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been viewed 255,266 times.

So you want to open a bar. Hopefully, you havent come to this decision while tossing back a few of those tasty alcoholic concoctions that you hope to sell by the barrel to your prospective customers. In order to start a successful business, youll need to do your due diligence. Youll need to learn the bar trade, understand the ins and outs of your local market and customer base, acquire a liquor license, and then actually build your bar. All of this may seem daunting, but for those drunk on the idea of starting their own bar, it is doable if you research effectively ahead of time.

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Consider Special Licenses Permits Types Of Insurance And Other Items

Sign license: Your city may restrict the type of signage you display outside your restaurant. Before you display a sign, check with your landlord and government officials to make sure your signage does not violate any laws.

Music license: If you plan to play music in your bar, you will need to get a music license from at least one of the major music licensing companies such as Broadcast Music Inc. or the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers . Each association has a vast repertoire of music, so if you randomly play any song, you may owe royalties to both agencies. The yearly fees these companies charge can be expensive, but without a proper music license, you can be held liable for copyright infringement. In 2011, a restaurant had to pay more than $30,000 in damages plus $10,000 in legal fees to BMI for failing to get a music license and ignoring BMI’s requests for yearly fees.

Commercial liability insurance: You should consider buying commercial liability insurance for your small business. This insurance will protect your business from financial loss stemming from lawsuits filed by employees, customers, or others. However, this insurance is not mandatory in California.

Renovations: If you are renovating a building, you should present your building plans with your area’s department of building inspection and fire department to make sure that those plans comply with laws governing public safety and accessibility.

Step : Create Your Business Website

After defining your brand and creating your logo the next step is to create a website for your business.

While creating a website is an essential step, some may fear that itâs out of their reach because they donât have any website-building experience. While this may have been a reasonable fear back in 2015, web technology has seen huge advancements in the past few years that makes the lives of small business owners much simpler.

Here are the main reasons why you shouldnât delay building your website:

  • All legitimate businesses have websites – full stop. The size or industry of your business does not matter when it comes to getting your business online.
  • Social media accounts like Facebook pages or LinkedIn business profiles are not a replacement for a business website that you own.
  • Website builder tools like the GoDaddy Website Builder have made creating a basic website extremely simple. You donât need to hire a web developer or designer to create a website that you can be proud of.

Using our website building guides, the process will be simple and painless and shouldnât take you any longer than 2-3 hours to complete.

Recommended: Get started today using our recommended website builder or check out our review of the Best Website Builders.

Other popular website builders are: WordPress, WIX, Weebly, Squarespace, and Shopify.

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Get The Necessary Professional Certification

When it comes to starting and operating a bar and grill restaurant business, you do not need to have any formal training or special certification before you can be allowed to open and operate a barbecue restaurant business in the United States of America and in all countries of the world. All you need is informal training that will expose you to the in and out of preparing grilled beef, fish, bacon, pork, chicken, and turkey and effectively running the business.

On the other hand, if you come across any form of certification that can aid you to conduct your bar and grill restaurant business effectively, then by all means try and pursue such certification.

Trademark Your Name And Logo

Bar & Restaurant Business : How to Open a Sports Bar

While using a trademark grants you protection of your bars name or logo within a certain geographic area, its difficult to enforce protection without registering your trademarks with the United States Patent and Trademark Office .

To trademark your name and logo, Id recommend hiring an intellectual property attorney instead of trying to go at it alone, as the trademark process is quite complicated.

Before you trademark a logo, be sure to have the logo designer grant you the copyright as well, or at least the rights to use the logo for your business.

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What Are Some Skills And Experiences That Will Help You Build A Successful Sports Bar Business

As mentioned above, extensive knowledge of the restaurant and bar business is essential for striking out on your own. You will also need to create and maintain relationships with your distributors, as they will almost work as an outside partner in your business. Understanding and following trends in these industries is also critical, as is knowing the sports world. Your knowledge of your barâs specialties, sports, food, and drinks, will help draw customers who share those same passions.

Finally, make yourself available to your patrons. Having more personal relationships with the people who frequent your establishment is an important aspect of your job. These customers will become more like friends and family over the years of maintaining a successful business.

Start A Bar By Following These 10 Steps:

  • Plan your Bar
  • Form your Bar into a Legal Entity
  • Register your Bar for Taxes
  • Open a Business Bank Account & Credit Card
  • Set up Accounting for your Bar
  • Get the Necessary Permits & Licenses for your Bar
  • Get Bar Insurance
  • Create your Bar Website
  • Set up your Business Phone System
  • You have found the perfect business idea, and now you are ready to take the next step. There is more to starting a business than just registering it with the state. We have put together this simple guide to starting your bar. These steps will ensure that your new business is well planned out, registered properly and legally compliant.

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    Research Your Franchise Options

    Now that youve identified an industry that has growth potential, you can get to know your prospective franchises. Part of knowing how to open a sports bar is understanding which franchise most closely matches your own approach and has a business model that speaks to you.

    A little research will help you narrow down your options and could point the way to a franchise that you connect with.

    Spend some time digging into the franchise options you find. Do you want to own a franchise that could have the tools for future growth? You might wish to find one that focuses on quality and customer experience.

    When you identify a franchise who believes in providing customers with fun, food, and exceptional service, you can start learning more about your potential resources in starting a sports bar.

    Host Your Soft Opening

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    A soft opening is a practice run that allows your bar staff to test out their operation on a limited number of guests before the actual grand opening. The benefit of a soft opening is that it gives you an idea of what you are doing right and what areas of your service may need more attention. Your staff gets the opportunity to practice without the pressure that comes with a busy opening day. An easy way to host a soft opening is to invite the friends and family of your employees for a sneak peek event.

    Now that youve become familiar with all the steps necessary to opening a bar, you can begin to make your dream a reality. By planning every aspect of your bar operation ahead of time, you can start your business off on the right foot.

    The information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice. Please refer to our Content Policyfor more details.

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    Is This Business Right For You

    Successful sports bar owners must be quite knowledgeable about the restaurant and bar business. A background in either of these fields of work is highly recommended. Managerial experience and a detailed eye, regarding finances, are also positive attributes.

    Want to know if you are cut out to be an entrepreneur?

    Take our Entrepreneurship Quiz to find out!

    Write A Business Plan For A Juice Bar

    How to start a juice bar? Every foodservice location needs a business plan and a good strategy, especially if you are going to open a juice bar using investor funds or a loan. It is quite possible to create a business plan for a juice bar yourself.

    A working business plan should include:

    • Competition research
    • Investment and monthly expenses predictions
    • Profitability and payback calculation

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    Buy Equipment For A Juice Bar Business

    Probably the largest share of your startup expenses will account for basic equipment. Lets see just exactly what you need:

    • Multifunctional juicer
    • Automatic fruit and vegetable peeler
    • Refrigerators
    • Ice machine
    • Closet to store inventory

    As for the juice bar POS solution, you might prefer to have something compact and not requiring heavy investments from the start. From the operations point of view, juice bars have a lot in common with small coffee shops or food trucks. Solutions popular among those types of businesses most probably will provide all the required features at a good price.

    How Can A Bar Business Plan Help You

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    A business plan helps you develop the right perspective towards the industry you plan on entering.

    It not only helps you with market analysis and management but also acts as a guide in your business journey.

    If you plan your business well, you get an edge over poorly managed entities and unaware owners who did not conduct market research before starting the business.

    Specifically, when starting a bar business, a business plan helps you in making cost-effective decisions when you begin, so you don’t have to worry about haphazard finances later.

    And as you know the benefits of having a business plan now, let’s discuss how to write an effective plan.

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    Deciding The Service Area Of The Restaurant Cum Bar

    Customers usually visit restro-bars to relax and have a good time. Thus choose the ambiance and colors of your restaurant that promotes this feeling. Warm shades are usually preferred for restro-bars. Apart from this, the furniture should be equally comfortable. So, it is advised to have more soft cushy seats, sofas, loungers and comfortable chairs for dining of the guests. You can further hire an interior designer for giving a complete look and feel of the restro-bar. The professionals may charge you on the upside but the cost will be minimal in the long run if your bar cum restaurant does well. The total cost of interiors, plus furniture may cost you around Rs 15 lakhs Rs 20 lakhs.

    Apart from that, a good POS is a dire necessity as the inventory for the bar cum restaurant is pretty huge and can be difficult to manage. Think of your POS as not just billing software, but as an investment that can help you manage your restaurant better, and also help cut down costs in several areas. Integrated inventory management, CRM, in-depth reporting, and analytics are some of the must-have features in your POS for the restaurant. The basic POS software can cost you around Rs 30,000 per year, but it is advisable to go for the complete restaurant management software, as it helps you in the long run. Learn how can you choose the best pos software for your restaurant here.

    Hire Employees For Your Technical And Manpower Needs

    On the average, there is no special technology or equipment needed to run this type of business except for grill making machines , cooking table, cooking utensils, storage hardware , Counter area equipment , receipt issuing machines, Sound System , Point of Sale Machines , CCTV Cameras and Flat Screen TVs. So also, you will definitely need computers, internet facility, telephone, fax machine and office furniture amongst others and all these can be gotten as fairly used.

    As regards leasing or outright purchase of a bar/restaurant facility, the choice is dependent on your financial standing, but the truth is that to be on the safe side, it is advisable to start off with a short term rent/lease while test running the business in the location. If things work out as planned, then you can go on a long term lease or outright purchase of the property but if not, then move on and source for other ideal location/facility for such business.

    When it comes to hiring employees for a standard bar and grill restaurant business with more than one outlet, you should make plans to hire a competent Chief Executive Officer , Admin and Human Resources Manager, Merchandize Manager, Restaurant Manager, Chefs/Cooks, Sales Girls and Sales Boys , Accounting Clerk and Cleaners. On the average, you will need a minimum of 5 to 10 key staff members to run a small scale but standard bar and grill restaurant business.

    The Service Delivery Process of the Business

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