Do you love the idea of opening your own coffee shop? Imagine being able to hang out in your favorite espresso place all day, every day, and pass it off as “work.” If that sounds appealing to you, read on to discover three tips on how you can get there.
Opening a coffee shop is hot these days. People may not have a lot of extra money, but a good cup of coffee is a simple luxury that even the tightest budget can make room for. Most people treat themselves to a simple pleasure here and there even if a new pair of shoes might be a stretch. It’s an upper and helps them keep going until things get better again.
And coffee shops have also become community gathering places. People use them as their home away from home, or even their home office away from home or even the office. And you can get in on that.
And here are three additional tips to give you a running start:
1) Open the right kind of coffee shop
You know that different coffee shops draw different customers. Which one you want to open will depend on two factors — your market and your own preferences. Ideally, the two are in alignment as to which one of the two major models will work best:
Some people like the laid back variety, with vintage sofas, home-made cookies, and 60s music playing in the background. You could make it so authentic-looking that people almost expect some of their favorite Woodstock legends to walk in the door.
Other people love the sleek and elegant look. Those kinds of places feature the finest coffee drinks, expensive beans, and maybe gourmet food as well. The sleek coffee shops draw business people — and they’re perfect for making deals.
They definitely need to feature wireless internet access as well. Sure, you should consider that in any case, but for this particular type it’s a must.
As long as your market allows, go with what you love best.
2) Find something that will make your coffee shop unique
If you’ve done your research, you know what the competition has to offer. Now spend some quality time thinking about what YOU would like to offer that makes your place stand out. Make it something that no one else offers and especially something they won’t be able to replicate too easily.
Maybe you could come up with a phenomenal brownie or cookie recipe, or a drink to die for. You might even look into a license that allows you to serve up “adult” coffee drinks! Now that would make you stand out from the crowd, although it might come with some drawbacks too.
3) Make your coffee shop a destination
Offer something that will make people show up for events. Whether it’s live music or poetry readings, or even workshops on topics your audience is interested in, from how to promote your business online to astrology. Events like these will benefit you in two big ways:
a) They will make you stand out and draw a growing crowd.
b) They will give you a legitimate excuse to be listed in all kinds of event calendars. They also allow you to send out announcements to your customers, post fliers, and use other ways to publicize your event — and bring people into your coffee shop.
But first things first — you need to have a coffee shop business plan to get it all off the ground. You also need a guide to hold your hand, preferably written by someone who has done it all before successfully, so you can avoid the most common mistakes and can get on the fast track to your own coffee shop success.