How to Run a Snack Bar

Written by alexander cequea
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How to Run a Snack Bar
A snack bar may charge more for a niche product. (snack bar image by Craig Hanson from

To run a snack bar, you need a business license, a sales tax number and a health department certificate. Snack bars normally offer cash-and-carry beverages and food items, as well as some speciality or gourmet foods. Because snack bars cater to people with busy work schedules who don't like cooking at home, you can become successful in a short period of time.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Write a business plan that includes your business overview; competitor analysis; background of the industry; a list of your products, services, and its charges; a production strategy; a marketing plan; pro forma financial statements; funding alternatives; and legal documents. Mention any other snack bars or potential sources of competition nearby.

  2. 2

    Determine the legal structure of your business. Decide upon sole proprietorship, limited liability company, partnership or corporation based on your objectives and requirements. Register the business structure with your secretary of state.

  3. 3

    Choose a suitable location. Consider locating your business in a train or bus station, airport, university or college campus, or fitness centre. Select a location with heavy foot traffic and make sure to comply with local zoning regulations.

  4. 4

    Contact your local small business administration office to obtain the permits and licenses you need to start a snack bar. Obtain an employer Identification number from the Internal Revenue Service website at Register your domain name with your county and obtain a sales tax number from your local Department of Revenue. You'll also need a resale permit and a business license from your city.

  5. 5

    Select an appealing theme and decor Add your personal taste to give a perfect finish to your snack bar.

  6. 6

    Purchase food service equipment such as a Beverage-Air countertop ice machine, deep fat fryer, Beverage-Air countertop refrigerators, commercial portable double hob or double portable stoves, serving ware and other supplies.

  7. 7

    Choose a menu that is attractive and unique. Perform a market analysis to come up with a list of these items. Price these products reasonably according to the location and competition. Take into account the purchasing power of your target audience. If you're inside an office building with no other snack bar in sight, then you can charge more for your products.

  8. 8

    Hire efficient chefs and staff. Find qualified employees with a friendly attitude toward customers.

  9. 9

    Get all inspections as required by your local Health Department. Maintain cleanliness and practice safe food handling practices.

  10. 10

    Advertise your snack bar by distributing flyers at area parks and companies and placing ads with local newspapers, radio and TV stations.

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