What you need to consider before starting a cafe
Cafe Business Overview:
As a cafe 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 successful cafe 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 cafe is about the experience.
Skill Set and Traits Required For A Cafe Business:
- Waiting tables/customers
- Cooking skills
- People Skills
- Excellent sanitation skills
- List of Common Business Skills
Employee & Job Consideration During The Start-Up Phase or In The Future:
- Common staff positions needed to run some businesses
Approximate Daily Hours Needed:
Can vary from early in the morning to late at night or even a 24-hour operation.
Equipment and supplies during start-up phase or in the future:
- Automatic espresso machine
- Water softeners and filtration
- Commercial espresso grinder
- Coffee brewer
- Coffee grinder
- Insulated beverage containers
- Blending station
- Coffee accessories
- Serving racks
- Coffee filters
- Whipped cream maker
- Hand tamper
- Knock box
- Steaming pitchers
- Commercial water dispensers
- Espresso shot glasses
- Cleaning brushes
- Iced coffee dispensers
- Other standard kitchen utensils
- Cash register
- Under counter refrigerator
- We also have a lot more in the resources section of this page under Equipment
Monthly Expenses To Consider
- Check your municipality for local zoning laws concerning the food and beverage industry.
- See Our Page on Licenses and Permits
- You need to develop a niche to compete with existing cafés. You can create a theme for your cafe to attract a certain type of audience. For example:
- A certain country or culture.
- Themes that are related to eras, e.g. the 50s.
- Themes related to an industry or clubs, car buffs, computer enthusiasts, etc.
- o Themes related to clubs, e.g. book clubs
- 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 neighboring business that requires people to wait for a service. For example, if there is a local tire shop, you can offer their customers 50 percent off when they come to your cafe to wait for their tires.
Pros and Cons:
- Fairly easy to run
- Can be very profitable with a regular customer base
- Can be rewarding if you enjoy meeting and talking with people
- 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 cafes and if you don’t offer anything special, it’s hard to compete
Profitability and Revenue Considerations:
Profitability and revenue depend on a number of issues.
For example, if your location is poor and in a low population area, then how much business can you expect? It would be difficult to become successful.
On the other hand, if you are located in an excellent, highly populated area, your success rate is greatly increased.
Profitability also depends on your:
- Product variety
- Customer experience
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 cafe. Cost depends on the how big the cafe 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 cafe yourself or hire employees.
- Costs also depend on the variety you plan to offer.
Full-Time or Part-Time Business:
- Running a cafe 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.
- A cafe is not suited to a home-based business environment unless detached from the home in a suitable location.
Starting Your Business
A List of Important Steps You Must Consider When Starting A Business – Take a couple 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!
Cafe Business Plan | Fast Business Plans.com
Sample Business Plan: Moose Mountain Cafe | NH Small Business Development Center
A Day In The Life of An Cafe Owner:
A Day In The Life of A Coffee Shop Owner | Canstarblue.com.au
A Day in the Life of the Beth’s Cafe General Manager | Eater Seattle
Cafe 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 Cafe | Gensfallsregion.com
20 Questions with Linda Gomez, co-owner of Inza Coffee in Scottsdale | Arizona Coffee
Maid Cafe NY: An Interview With Owner Satoshi Yoshimura | Nextshark.com
Cafe Market Research:
Bakery Cafes in the US Market Research | IBISWorld
Cafés/Bars market research, trends, and statistics | Euromonitor.com
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 Cafe – Start-up Tips:
10 Things You Should Know Before Opening a Cafe | ladyironchef
My coffeehouse nightmare | Slate.com
Want to Open a Coffee Shop? Read This | Fox Business
Opening a Cafe – Business Support | My Business 1st
10 Things To Know Before Opening a Cafe! | European Coffee Trip.com
Opening a Coffee Shop | Espresso101.com
Changing the Way Cafe Owners Think | CoffeeGeek
Cafe 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 Cafe Owners | Smallbusinessfirst.com.au
Marketing A Cafe:
50 Restaurant Marketing Ideas & Tips From the Pros | Fit Small Business.com
20 of the Best Cafe 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
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
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 Equipemnt | Coffee Am.com
Espresso Parts | Espresso Parts.com
Restaurant Furniture | Restaurant & Cafe Supplies Online
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
Cafe 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
Cafe Insurance – Business Insurance Quotes | Compare The Market
Compare Cafe Insurance Quotes | Commercial Insurance.net
Established Cafe Sites and Business:
America’s Best Coffee Bars | Food & Wine
Best Coffee Shops in America | Thrillist
Best coffee shops in the US – Business Insider
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
Cafe News, Industry Publications & Popular Sites:
Coffee and Espresso Terms | Coffee Review.com
Coffee Glossary and Definitions | Coffee For Less.com
Cafe Franchise Opportunities:
10 Coffee Franchises to Challenge Starbucks | Smallbiztrends.com
Café Franchise Opportunities | Franchise Direct.com
Cafe & Coffee Franchise Opportunities | FranchiseSales.com
NY Bagel Cafe & Deli Franchise Opportunities | Nybagelcafe.com
Sunny Street Café | Sunnystreetcafe.com
Another Broken Egg | Another Broken Egg.com
Keke’s Breakfast Cafe | Kekes.com
Cafe Businesses For Sale:
Cafe Businesses For Sale | Bizquest.com
Coffee Shops For Sale in USA | Businesses For Sale.com
Cafes For Sale | BizBuySell.com
Cafes For Sale | BusinessBroker.net
Cafes for Sale | WeSellRestaurants
Cafe, Cafeteria For Sale in California | Bizben.com
The Latest Cafe Related Videos:
Cafe on Social Media: