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How to Open a Family Restaurant Franchise

Family-style restaurants are popular settings for customers to enjoy their dining experience in an inviting, comfortable environment that feels like an extension of their home. So what aspects of opening a family restaurant make the process unique, and how can you ensure that your restaurant will appeal to all members of the community, young and old?


A restaurant’s niche is what differentiates it from other local dining options. Generally speaking, family-style restaurants appeal to people who want to get out of the house but still enjoy a sense of familiarity. Parents have to make a lot of decisions throughout the day, so family restaurants take the pressure of deciding on what to eat for dinner and then preparing it

While a family restaurant is technically a niche concept within a larger market, you would benefit from getting even more specific. Think about what you and your own family enjoy eating. Would your grandma’s beloved recipes work on a conceptual level for a restaurant? This is a great jumping-off point for independent restauranteurs.

If you are interested in owning a franchise restaurant, consider brands that rely on the backing and success of a family legacy.


Once you have decided to open a family restaurant, a solid business plan will convey your mission and goals. Your plan should address the market you plan to serve, the presence and challenges presented by any local competitors, what resources your restaurant will require, and how you plan to turn a profit.

Whether or not you choose to open a franchise restaurant, you will need to research startup costs to prepare yourself for the financial investment required to get your family restaurant up and running. Having a reliable estimate of what your startup costs will be is one of the benefits of investing in a franchise.


The location of your restaurant is a crucial factor in your success. Your location should vary depending on the type of customers you’re trying to attract. If you’re opening a family restaurant, a location in a bustling downtown area probably isn’t the way to go. The ideal spot should be in a more “blended” location, somewhere between commercial and residential. A location close to familiar retail locations like shopping malls and supermarkets is a good idea; these spots usually provide high visibility, foot traffic, and easy parking access.


The marketing needs of a restaurant depend a great deal on the type of customers you’re trying to attract. So, in the case of a family restaurant, your marketing will need to have a broad scope, appealing to both young and older diners. Consider including a kids menu, limited time offers (LTOs), and other promotional items geared toward families.

According to a study from the McCarthy Group, 84 percent of millennials said that they didn’t like or trust traditional marketing. So while old-school television, radio, and print ads may still appeal to older generations, be prepared to broaden your scope through social media and other digital avenues to reach younger customers.

One of the benefits of owning a restaurant franchise is the ability to rely on the support of an expert marketing team who have long-tested, proven marketing strategies to ensure that your restaurant will be able to open its doors to success.


Gold Star Chili was established in Cincinnati more than 55 years ago by four Jordanian brothers. Gold Star started as, and continues to be, a distinctly family-focused restaurant brand. Jordanians are known for a culture of all-encompassing hospitality, and that is apparent in every Gold Star Chili location.

When you become a Gold Star Chili franchisee, you become a member of the family.

Visit us to learn more about Gold Star Chili franchise opportunities in your community.