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Here’s Everything You Need to Know About Ghost Kitchens


ghost kitchens 

The Lowdown on Ghost Kitchens

Ghost kitchens (a.k.a. dark kitchens or delivery-only kitchens) - you’ve probably been hearing about this new trend circling around the restaurant industry. With the shift in demand during the pandemic, this trend is only moving faster as delivery has become the lifeblood of many restaurants.

Now more than ever, the cost of running a traditional brick-and-mortar restaurant is overwhelmingly high, with skyrocketing overhead costs in an uncertain demand period. Simply put, traditional restaurants just aren’t built for delivery.

Even further, demand for food delivery is at an all time high, where customers are able to order food from their favorite restaurants in any given city. Customers are browsing their favorite foods online and ordering their favorite dishes directly from their couch.

You value your restaurant and the experience it has to offer your customers, and may be wondering how you can maintain that experience when shifting to delivery.

We’re here to provide you with everything there is to know about ghost kitchens, so you can make the next best decision for your business and feel confident about your success even during unpredictable situations.

What Is a Ghost Kitchen?

Ghost kitchens, also known as dark kitchens, are commercial kitchens optimized for delivery. Ghost kitchens provide you with prime real estate at a fraction of the cost, compared to brick-and-mortar. Plus, they come with fulfillment and logistics services, so you can focus on cooking.

More specifically, these are private commercial kitchens for rent inside of a larger facility that are made for delivery, rather than dine-in. With ghost kitchens come endless possibilities in terms of what you can do to launch new brands or manage multiple virtual restaurants all in one place, since your presence is online.

ghost kitchens

The kitchens themselves don’t have a storefront and the staff prepares dishes off of their menus that are only available for delivery. This provides customers with the convenience of ordering some of their favorite foods without having to ever get off their couch.

When you understand how valuable of a concept this is for the customer, you know how crucial it is to master delivery so you can better meet their needs.

Ghost kitchens allow you to tap into the online delivery business which is rapidly growing and projected to reach $490 billion by 2025. Now more than ever, it is crucial to adapt to the online delivery market to capitalize on market demand.

In order to remain competitive, it is vital to build a delivery model that works based on current demand. 

Let’s dive into the different components of a ghost kitchen.

What Makes Up a Ghost Kitchen?

Prime Real Estate

You have your own private commercial kitchen space within a delivery hub to cook up orders.

With your ghost kitchen comes 200 to 300 square feet of prime real estate at a fraction of the cost. Ghost kitchens provide you with real estate within a delivery hotspot. This means you’re strategically located in an area where you will capture the most online orders from customers nearby.

With a traditional brick-and-mortar restaurant, you know that location means everything and that typically comes with a high price. But shifting to delivery-first means you can eliminate unnecessary costs without having to worry about how much foot traffic your restaurant will have. With delivery-optimized facilities that are easily accessible for delivery drivers, it’s never been easier to reach a high volume of customers in the heart of a city at such a low cost.

Some restaurateurs are just using our space as a commissary kitchen, too, since our locations are right where all the action is happening. You may be asking yourself, “Is there a commissary near me?” With CloudKitchens, you’ll have access to the restaurant kitchen space you need to keep growing your food business. 

Proprietary Technology

Each ghost kitchen at CloudKitchens comes fully equipped with the proprietary software needed to give you better tracking and actionable data. This technology within each kitchen aggregates all your delivery orders into one place, rather than having a tablet for each app. That means less room for error, more efficient operations, and better data.

With key insights into market demand right at your fingertips, your restaurant will be running as efficiently as possible. You can even leverage the data to plan your supply chain and labor needs based on demand.

Logistics and Fulfillment

Instead of managing delivery all by yourself, you have a dedicated on-site fulfillment team to ensure each delivery is accurate and efficient every time.

Having a restaurant in a prime location usually comes with the constant headache of managing multiple delivery drivers entering your restaurant and keeping track of every order that comes in. CloudKitchens sets you up for success with a dedicated team to ensure each order gets in the hands of the right delivery driver.

As soon as you mark an order as complete, our fulfillment team will come grab it, process the order, and hand it off for delivery as soon as the driver arrives. This can cut down your delivery time by 30%, and you never even had to step foot outside your kitchen. And in case you missed it, faster deliveries make happier customers.

Facility Management

Cleaning, maintenance, and security is all taken care of for you so there’s no wasted time on extra tasks that keep you busy. All you need to do is make great food, and we’ll provide the support you need to grow your restaurant business online.

How Does a Ghost Kitchen Help Your Restaurant Grow?

To put the value of a ghost kitchen into perspective, let’s say you have a franchise restaurant and due to the pandemic, you had to shut down. You could have potentially offered take-out prior to the pandemic, but that only goes so far when you’ve got rent to pay on a brick-and-mortar.

This is where CloudKitchens comes in. You can quickly set up your restaurant to focus on delivery, minimize your costs, maximize your revenue, and resume cooking your best dishes.

Put simply, a ghost kitchen gives you the opportunity to build a successful restaurant concept and return to business as usual.

Turn-Key Solution

You can launch a ghost kitchen in one month or less. With minimal upfront capital and immediate access to the software and kitchen space you need, you have all the tools needed to have a successful delivery-only restaurant.

With commercial kitchens and storage space designed to help you run your delivery business, you’ll be able to optimize your business and minimize costs. Our kitchens come fit with basic equipment, like a commercial kitchen hood and three compartment sink. That way, you can customize the rest of your equipment to fit your needs.

Focus on the Food

You’re probably in the restaurant business because you’re passionate about cooking, but have you become overwhelmed with managing the operations side of your deliveries?

Our kitchens come with all the pieces of the operations puzzle, so you can focus on the food. CloudKitchens helps take the stress out of implementing a new business concept so you can get back to doing what you do best. All you’ve got to do is cook - we handle the logistics and fulfillment to make sure your orders are delivered with more accuracy, in less time. That way, you can better serve your customers.

Build Multiple Concepts Out of One Kitchen

Don’t miss this: since your presence is digital, you can create more than one brand to target different segments online. Let’s say you run a Mexican food restaurant. Split that into street tacos, a fajitas concept, and a breakfast burrito brand, and you’ve just tripled your exposure on delivery apps. Our most successful operators are often running five or more brands, and it’s all being cooked out of one single kitchen.

Experiment With Low Risk

Have you dreamt of running a successful restaurant business, but always felt overwhelmed by the significant amount of time, money and risks that come with doing so? Opening a traditional restaurant comes with significant upfront capital and a lengthy ramp-up period, making it a high-risk endeavor for you

But with CloudKitchens, you can unleash your creativity in the kitchen without losing your shirt, thanks to a low investment and high reward. Consider this your secret ingredient for expansion. You can easily build your delivery-only restaurant and reach a high volume of customers without being bogged down by the financial burden of a traditional brick-and-mortar.

Plus, the ability to run multiple brands we just covered leaves more room for experimentation without a big risk. You’ve got the flexibility to experiment with new food concepts and brands and figure out what works without spending months building out a brick-and-mortar location each time.

Opening a ghost or dark kitchen requires minimal investment and risk, with unlimited opportunity to grow your restaurant business in the online delivery world.

Minimize Cost, Maximize Profit

We all know restaurants are a low margin industry, but ghost kitchens help you maximize that profit by getting smarter about how you run your delivery business. With ghost kitchens, you’re able to get started with little capital (we’re talking $30K instead of $1M), and you’ll cut down on operational costs like front-of-house labor, wasted food, and expensive real estate.

With CloudKitchens, you have the restaurant delivery management expertise you need to help you increase your revenue and ultimately maximize your profits.

ghost kitchens

How Do Ghost Kitchens Work?

It’s more important now than ever to build a delivery model that works. At CloudKitchens, we provide the infrastructure and technology you need to run a successful delivery business.

Each kitchen is fully equipped with basic amenities and customizable options to best meet you and your customers’ needs. You have more flexibility than ever before, where you can get creative in the kitchen again, and try new menu ideas and concepts.

  1. First, you’ll get access to your own ghost kitchen, fit with basic commercial kitchen equipment so you can customize it to your needs. We’ll provide the technology to track your orders effectively and efficiently.
  2. Next, your customer places an order and no matter what delivery app they use, you’ll accept all deliveries through one single tablet. Then you’ll cook up the order from your delivery-only kitchen.
  3. You’ll mark the order as complete right from the tablet in your kitchen, and our team will take care of the rest to fulfill the order. Each of our delivery hubs has a processing center on site with a dedicated team ensuring that each order makes it into the hands of the right delivery driver in the shortest amount of time.
  4. Thanks to faster and more accurate deliveries, you’ll see the 5-star reviews start to roll in from your customers. And in case you missed it, reviews will make or break you, so it’s crucial to drive positive sentiment online.

Here’s a quick video showing how CloudKitchens work 

Are Ghost Kitchens Profitable?

Yes. CloudKitchens helps you minimize costs while maximizing revenue. You’ll cut costs on front-of-house labor, overhead, and wasted food. You’ll also maximize revenue across all delivery apps and optimize your online presence. Since your presence is digital, you can maximize your exposure even further with multiple brands running out of one single kitchen.

ghost kitchens

How Do You Start a Ghost Kitchen? 

At CloudKitchens, you can launch a ghost kitchen in one month with little capital, and our team of experts will partner alongside you to set you up for success with delivery.

Times have been tough, but managing your restaurant shouldn’t be. We’re as passionate about food as you are, and that’s why we’ve created a model where restaurants can thrive with delivery, even in the midst of a pandemic.

Ready to see a ghost kitchen for yourself? Schedule a tour at one of our CloudKitchens facilities to see what all the buzz is about.

Schedule a Tour of a CloudKitchens Facility Today!