Are you ready to combine your love of coffee and passion for business?
If so, you have found yourself in the right place! The coffee industry is booming so it’s no wonder why smaller coffee shops are popping up left and right! Opening a new business is difficult, and we are here to simplify things for you.
Ever wondered what steps go into opening up a coffee shop? Look no further! Brand My Cafe has put together an opening a coffee shop checklist for you!
Creating a business is fun and exciting, but it is also extremely expensive. To get from the bare footprints to opening day, it can sometimes cost up to $275,000 (keep in mind that is before you even make a single sale).
Before opening up your business it is crucial that you have enough money to begin with, whether that’s from your own pocket, investors or loans. If you do not have enough money, it is not the right time to open. From rent to employee’s pay, the costs continue to rise.
To read a little more about the breakdown of costs and what to expect, we recommend checking out Calculating Cost of Opening Cafe? Here’s What to Consider.
Location of Your Cafe
The first step to creating any business is finding a great location. Location is one of the number one factors to help contribute to the success of a business. When creating your business, you really need to think about where your coffee shop will be.
Think about who your target market is and decide if it is
The most important way to have a successful coffee shop is to make sure it’s centrally located! If an area is already exhausted with the competition, chances are this is not the right place for your coffee shop. Keep reading to make sure you follow our opening a coffee shop checklist for more helpful tips!
Target Market & Demographic
Once you have picked a great location, then you can really dive into who your target market is. Think to yourself, “who is it that I’m trying to reach?”, “who is my ideal customer?”
After you have figured out the group of people you want to target, you will have the ability to create a menu suited for them, as well as efficient marketing strategies.
Logo & Branding
Business’s logos are the face of the company, so it’s important that you get it right. Now that you have your location and a better idea of who your target customer is, you can design a logo directed at them. Are you located in a city near office buildings? In a college campus? On Main Street in a suburban house town. Each of these locations would have a different logo, so it’s truly important that you have an understanding of who you want your target customer to be.
Designing a logo does not have to be costly. If you were born with artistic talent, you can design it yourself through software such as Adobe Illustrator. Not artistic? Don’t worry! There are companies that you can go to design it for you!
If you need help getting a logo started for your business or cafe, we might be able to help you out.
Items to Sell Besides Coffee
Depending on the products you sell, this will affect the equipment that you purchase and the permits that you must acquire. Will you just have coffee and teas? Maybe some croissants? Are you going to sell alcohol in the afternoons and evenings?
Once you figure out the products that you want to carry, you will then be able to meet with the appropriate suppliers and begin the proper marketing tactics.
POS, or point-of-sale systems, are there to make things easier when running a business.
They can help with a number of different tasks from sales, inventory, to even customer rewards. There are a number of different software that offers great services, but it is crucial to get something that meets your needs as a new small business owner. Two POS software platforms that we recommend are Square and Toast.
There is a wide variety of equipment on the market, so it is important that you do your research. Again, we want to emphasize that opening a cafe is costly, and you will be dishing out a large chunk of your cash during this step. To give you a better idea of how much money could be in the picture for you, we created this image.
Suppliers for Your Cafe
Now that you have an idea of the items you want to sell and what equipment you will be using, it is time to think about where you are getting the products from.
Many people love locally sourced good, so we recommend looking around in your area. Speak with a few different suppliers to get different quotes so you have an easier time negotiating with the company you want to do business with.
Make sure to actually taste check the products you will potentially be selling. Sounds like an obvious task, but if you don’t like it chances are neither will your customers.
Who you hire has a huge impact on your business, so it is important to get it right. Although best if you hire people who already have experience in the coffee and barista industry, it is not necessary for success.
You want to make sure to hire people who are outgoing and personable, people who can get along with your customers with a smile on their face and a positive attitude. Learn how you can motivate your employees that directly affect your bottom line!
Whether your business is ready to go for opening day or you just have the framework set in place, it is important to start marketing right out the gate. A great way to get started is simply making a social media presence through Instagram or our Restaurant Builders FB Group!
Start by creating a business account and posting progress pictures of your business coming along. Make sure to tag your location and use trending coffee hashtags to peak the interests of potential customers!
Patents & Other Business Regulations
Make sure that you are registering with your city and acquiring the proper permits. If you don’t get the permits, you can’t open. If you can’t open you don’t make any money!
Be sure to also check the small business regulations in your state and city too. THere’s a lot of nuances that can bite you in the bite later down the road. It’s better to be safe than sorry!
Now that you know a thing or two about opening up your own cafe or coffee shop, what do you think? Are you well suited for opening your own coffee shop sooner than later? If not, let us know what other questions you might have by commenting below.
We’ll be happy to add more topics or questions to this list in order to help you and your business thrive!
Brand My Cafe helps small & medium-sized businesses, cafes and foodservice brands grow their identity through custom coffee cups, coffee sleeves & more. Join our exclusive Facebook group Restaurant Brand Builders to brainstorm ideas with passionate other passionate owners!