After years of procrastination, you have finally decided that 2022 is the year you open up your dream Café. Coffee has become tremendously popular in the last couple of decades. So much so that British citizens drink around 95 million cups of coffee every… single… day. The coffee business is very rewarding. Many coffee entrepreneurs are also avid coffee fans, and usually have something unique to offer to a niche group of individuals. With the proliferation of coffee culture, you can make the most of this opportunity by starting a coffee shop with this practical guide.


Your coffee shop needs a direction. Before starting any kind of business, you need to have a concept of what the business is going to offer. Saying you’re going to sell coffee is very indeterminate. Starbucks, McDonald’s, and Asda sell coffee, yet only Starbucks is considered a coffee shop. Your concept idea is very important because that’s going to be the basis of your customer acquisition strategy.

Try to pinpoint your Unique Selling Point. Your interests and the things that can provide as a coffee shop owner. Identifying your USP will get you off and running. Maybe you are best known for the amazing coffee from your new espresso machine, or for creating a wholesome environment.



Just like you’re opening this coffee shop to find your place in this world, you need to find a place for it in the city of your choosing. The location of a retail shop is extremely important because people need to find you to be able to buy from you. A coffee shop in a busy street will have a different clientele from one tucked away on a sleepy side street. If possible, consider an area with plenty of passing traffic, close to other businesses and amenities, all while staying within your budget.



To achieve your goals, you need high-quality suppliers who supply/distribute products aligned with yours. You rely heavily on your supplier to fulfil their promises and keep your stores stocked for the quality of your coffee and reputation. Moreover, their reliability is an essential component, as you may not be able to sell your products if your suppliers are absent or late with their deliveries.

You can read this article about choosing the right supplier if you want to learn more.



The hiring process can be challenging when you are just starting out. Taking the first person you meet is not a smart idea. Rather, you should choose people who approach each task with the same level of commitment that you do, and who will serve you coffee with a smile. Coffee has become such a big business that several specialist barista recruitment agencies are available. Nevertheless, you must understand the cost of using a recruitment agency.

Just as in restaurants, coffee shops can be expensive to run. Cashiers and other staff will probably earn the national minimum wage, while baristas make between £10 and £14 per hour. It is highly recommended to have at least one manager on site at all times (this could be you or your barista). Ideally, staff costs should not exceed 50% of the budget.



The dreaded legal side of the business is still awfully important. For your business to run smoothly, it will be necessary to select the most appropriate legal structure. The licensing of your business location will be extremely important. The commercial insurance policies you purchase must cover your property, your staff, and your customers. In addition, you need to check that all your health and safety paperwork is present and accurate. Moreover, you must register your food business with the local council at least 28 days before opening day. 



This is where your imagination is allowed to run wild. Once the business has been established in an ideal location, it should be equipped with the finest equipment, and its decor should be inviting and enticing. Try to decorate your establishment according to the environment, feeling, and product that you are offering. You wouldn't decorate your establishment like 2010's modern Starbucks while marketing yourself as a traditional Havana coffee shop.

A high-quality espresso machine is also a necessary component of any coffee shop. Selecting an espresso machine that meets the needs of your operation requires a great deal of consideration. For example, a barista can make drinks better by using a traditional automatic espresso machine instead of a super-automatic machine, but handcrafted coffee cups aren't necessarily the drawing card for every shop. You can check what espresso machine you may need in this article.



Once your business has been set up, you will need to market it in order to attract customers. It's important to start with the physical location because people make decisions based on their eyes and noses. Your place should smell good and look good. A tray of tempting baked goods and the scent of freshly roasted coffee can add to the enticing experience. You can also strategically place posters and fliers that advertise high-margin items in your coffee shop to encourage customers to spend once they are in it.

Small businesses also need local SEO because customers don't just stroll down the street looking for their next cup of coffee. To promote your coffee shop effectively, you'll need to list your business in as many online food directories as possible. You can list your business for free on Google My Business and Yelp, and you can enter as many details as possible, such as opening hours, phone number, and directions. And if you are ready to spill the bills on online marketing, you can pay for google ads (via SEM or AdSense) or Facebook Marketing.


So, What Next?

Having gained your first few customers, you need to make sure they keep returning. It is important to build up a customer base of repeat customers, as they are the most valuable. Make sure that your customers have an awesome experience, so they keep coming back and telling their peers about your store as well. Try to take analyse and improve on any inefficiencies your store may have. All the tools you need to start your own coffee shop are at your disposal now. Make sure you conduct thorough research throughout the process.



For wholesale products and services, get in touch with us!

Phone: 01908 366633

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