Here’s What To Consider Before Starting Your Café

June 23, 2018 586 views

Image of a cup of coffee

What you need to consider before starting a Café

Café Business Overview:

As a Café owner, you will need to provide a desirable setting where you can provide a place for people to meet, take a break, and relax.

A thriving Café depends on how you welcome your customers and the type of atmosphere you provide.

People can have coffee at home or bring coffee in a travel mug while driving. The function of a Café is all about the experience. You want to make the visit to your Café a place your customers can call their own.

If they make it the place to meet, they will return, and they’ll return with friends. It’s essential to make them feel at home while giving them privacy and allowing them to say for a while. That’s something to consider when figuring out seating.

With that in mind, you’ll need to create a theme for your Café, based on the type of people you want to attract.

If you want to attract an older crowd, you may want to have a retro theme! So your customers can relate to their teenage years!

If you’re focused on a younger generation, you want to make sure you have a lot of screens up, high-speed WIFI, a fireplace with a seating area, etc. Your theme needs to be desirable to the type of customers you want to attract.

With many brick and mortar businesses, location is a crucial issue that will affect the success of your business. In the case of a Café, location is extremely important.

Imagine having the opportunity to open your Café in New York City on Wall Street, compared to opening your Café in a tiny town with a population of 150 people. Which do you think would be more successful? It’s location, location, location!

Another consideration you need to focus on is if you will be offering food, and if so, what type of food will your offer? Will it be baked goods, sandwiches, and soup, or something similar?

Below you’ll find a lot more issues to consider before you start your Café

Skill Set and Traits Required For A Café Business:
Employee & Job Consideration During The Start-Up Phase or In The Future:
Approximate Daily Hours Needed:

It can vary from early in the morning to late at night or even a 24-hour operation.

Equipment and supplies during the start-up phase or in the future:
  • Automatic espresso machine
  • Water softeners and filtration
  • Commercial espresso grinder
  • Coffee brewer
  • Coffee grinder
  • Coffee Airpots
  • Coffee accessories
  • Coffee filters
  • Insulated beverage containers
  • Blending station
  • Serving racks
  • Whipped cream maker
  • Hand tamper
  • Knock box
  • Steaming pitchers
  • Commercial water dispensers
  • Espresso shot glasses
  • Cleaning brushes
  • Iced coffee dispensers
  • Other standard kitchen utensils
  • POS System
  • Under counter refrigerator
  • We also have a lot more in the resources section of this page under Equipment
Monthly Expenses To Consider
Marketing Ideas:
  • You can come up with unique flavors for your café, where you get your customers involved and you could even name flavors after a customer who wins the most votes for the flavor.
  • Offering a special of the day. Give out business cards with your specials of the day on the back.
  • Do a few radio interviews at a local radio station offering something free for listeners that drop by.
  • Post free coupons for something on your Facebook page.
  • Look for a neighboring business that requires people to wait for service. For example, if there is a local tire shop, you can offer their customers 50 percent off when they come to your Café to wait for their tire repair or new tire installation.
Pros and Cons:

The Pros:

  • Fairly easy to run
  • Can be very profitable with a regular customer base
  • Can be rewarding if you enjoy meeting and talking with people

The Cons:

  • Long hours
  • Dealing with customers that stay too long and don’t buy
  • Takes time and effort to create a loyal customer base
  • You must compete with other established Cafés and if you don’t offer anything special, it’s hard to compete
Profitability and Revenue Considerations:

Profitability also depends on your:

  • Service
  • Quality
  • Product variety
  • Customer experience
  • Having a suitable location

Lacking any of the above will greatly diminish your revenue and profits.

Start-up Cost Considerations:
  • There are many issues when it comes to the cost of opening a Café. Cost depends on how big the Café is, the location, and if you are going to buy or lease the building.
  • Other issues depend on if you are planning to run the Café yourself or hire employees.
  • Costs also depend on the variety you plan to offer.
  • The size of your Café will influence your startup costs.
Full-Time or Part-Time Business:
  • Running a Café is a full-time business. Unless your customer base has certain hours that they come in, like an evening crowd, morning crowd, or a school crowd.
Home-Based Business:
  • A Café is not suited to a home-based business environment unless detached from the home in a suitable location.


Starting Your Business

Important Steps You Must Consider When Starting A Business – Take a couple of minutes to go over this list of issues to consider when starting a business.

Questions To Consider Before Starting A Business – 10 key issues to look at before starting a business. Starting a new venture blindly is asking for headaches! Know what to expect before you start!

Business Plans:

Café Bistro Coffeehouse Business Plan Sample | Bplans

Café Business Plan | Fast Business Plans.com

Sample Business Plan: Moose Mountain Café | NH Small Business Development Center

A Day In The Life of An Café Owner:

A Day In The Life of A Coffee Shop Owner | Canstarblue.com.au

A Day in the Life of the Beth’s Café General Manager | Eater Seattle

Café Owners Interviews:

15 Coffee Business Owners Speak Out | “What I Wish I’d Known Before Starting My Coffee Shop”

Interview With The Owner of Orange Cat Café | Gensfallsregion.com

20 Questions with Linda Gomez, co-owner of Inza Coffee in Scottsdale | Arizona Coffee

Maid Café NY: An Interview With Owner Satoshi Yoshimura | Nextshark.com

Meet Zahra Saleh, The Vibrant Longtime Owner Of Café International | Hoodline

Café Market Research:

Coffee Shop Research Report – U.S. Small Business Administration

Bakery Cafés in the US Market Research | IBISWorld

Cafés/Bars market research, trends, and statistics | Euromonitor.com

Café Trends:

2016 Coffee Shop Trends | Stocktongraham.com

New Coffee Industry Trends | Refinery29.com

2016 Coffee Trends | Camano Island Coffee

Coffee Shops Around the World | Euromonitor.com

Opening a Café – Start-up Tips:

10 Things You Should Know Before Opening a Café | ladyironchef

My coffeehouse nightmare | Slate.com

Want to Open a Coffee Shop? Read This | Fox Business

10 Things To Know Before Opening a Café! | European Coffee Trip.com

What’s The Secret To A Successful Coffee Shop? | Forbes

Changing the Way Café Owners Think | CoffeeGeek

Café Article Mix:

5 Essential Tips for New Coffee Shop Owners | Serious Eats

Simple tips to build a successful café | Smart Tips and Solution

8 Essential Tips for Owning a Regional Café Business | Jamaica Blue

9 Must-Know Energy Saving Tips For Café Owners | Smallbusinessfirst.com.au

Marketing A Café:

50 Restaurant Marketing Ideas & Tips From the Pros | Fit Small Business.com

20 of the Best Café Marketing Ideas | Corehospitalityfurniture.com.au

How to market your café | Five Senses Coffee

Coffee Shop Marketing Ideas: Social Media Strategy | Blue Cricket Media

6 Coffee Shop Marketing Strategies that cost less than $100 a Month | Handground.com

The Café Owner Whose Ignorance Is Killing Her Business! | Jims Marketing Blog.com

Training Tips & Resources:

Five Practical Barista Training Tips from Heather Perry | Daily Coffee News by Roast Magazine

Top 5 Tips for Café Owners and Baristas | Refreshmentsystems.co.uk

American Barista & Coffee School | Barista Training, Coffee Business Consulting

Café Equipment:

Commercial Espresso Machines | Seattle Coffee Gear.com

Coffee Supplies & Equipment | akitchen.com

Coffee Shop Supplies & Equipment | Webstaurant Store.com

Coffee Shop Equipment | Catering Equipment Suppliers

Full list of Equipment for your Coffee Cart or Kiosk | Cmcespresso.com

Wholesale Coffee Equipment | Coffee Am.com

Espresso Parts | Espresso Parts.com

Restaurant Furniture | Restaurant & Café Supplies Online

Café Supplies:

Coffee Syrups & Coffee Makers For Home or Business | Barista Pro Shop

Coffee Machine Cleaner | Espresso Machine Cleaner

Kiva Han Coffee Wholesale | Kivahan.com

Coffee Wholesale Suppliers | Kaldi.com

Wholesale Coffee & Supplies | Espresso Zone

Fresh Wholesale Coffee, K-Cups, Pods, Bunn Brewers | Coffee Wholesale USA

Café Insurance:

Café Insurance & Coffee Shop Insurance – Nationwide

How Much Does Coffee Shop Insurance Cost? | Sample Insurance Quotes

Coffee Shop Business Insurance | Business Insurance USA.com

Coffee Shop Insurance | Bolt Insurance

Café Insurance – Business Insurance Quotes | Compare The Market

Compare Café Insurance Quotes | Commercial Insurance.net

Established Café Sites and Business:

America’s Best Coffee Bars | Food & Wine

Best Coffee Shops in America | Thrillist

Best coffee shops in the US – Business Insider

Best coffee shops in America for espresso, latte and more | Timeout.com

The 15 Greatest College Coffee Shops in America | Travel + Leisure

The 40 Best Coffee Shops in the U.S. | The 40 Best Coffee Shops in the U.S.

America’s 15 Best Indie Coffee Shops | Fodor’s Travel

These Are the Best Coffee Shops in America | TIME

Café News, Industry Publications & Popular Sites:

Fresh Cup Magazine

Tea & Coffee Trade Journal

Barista Magazine Online

Coffee Chemistry

Roast magazine

Café Culture


Coffee Review

Café Books:

Coffee Shop Business Plan Template eBook

Start & Run a Coffee Bar (Start & Run Business Series)

12 Steps to Café Success

The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Starting And Running A Coffeebar

Café Glossaries:

Coffee and Espresso Terms | Coffee Review.com

Coffee Glossary and Definitions | Coffee For Less.com

Café Associations:

National Coffee Association

Specialty Coffee Association of America

Barista Guild of America

Café Franchise Opportunities:

10 Coffee Franchises to Challenge Starbucks | Smallbiztrends.com

Café Franchise Opportunities | Franchise Direct.com

Café & Coffee Franchise Opportunities | FranchiseSales.com

NY Bagel Café & Deli Franchise Opportunities | NybagelCafé.com

Sunny Street Café | SunnystreetCafé.com

Another Broken Egg | Another Broken Egg.com

Keke’s Breakfast Café | Kekes.com

Café Businesses For Sale:

Café Businesses For Sale | Bizquest.com

Coffee Shops For Sale in USA | Businesses For Sale.com

Cafés For Sale | BizBuySell.com

Cafés For Sale | BusinessBroker.net

cafes for Sale | WeSellRestaurants

Café, Caféteria For Sale in California | Bizben.com

The Latest Café Related Videos:

Starting A Café

Café Marketing Tips

A Day In The Life of A Café Owner

Café Owner Interviews

Tips For Running A Café

Café Forums:

Coffee Forum


Barista.com Forums

Cold Brew Coffee Forum

Too Much Coffee

Café on Social Media:


Café Facebook Videos


Coffee Shop Tweets


Café Business

Coffee Shop

Coffe Shop Design

Coffee Shop Designs Architecture


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