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How to start a coffee shop

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by Startacus Admin

starting a coffee shopMarketing

  • Have you written up a marketing strategy yet? If not, do you know anyone who may have experience of putting one together?
  • How do you plan to market the coffee shop? A press release, a launch day and perhaps a feature in a local paper - is your story of setting up a coffee shop particularly inspiring or unique?
  • How can you use social media in order to spread the word about your new coffee shop? It’s a good idea to have active social media pages such as Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest. Who can manage these for you? You may like to check out our article on using social media to aid businesses.
  • Most coffee shops have a loyalty card to encourage return business, are you going to have one?
  • Investigate how your competitors market themselves? What can you learn from them and how can you ensure that your coffee shop stands out against the others? Are there any clever marketing strategies that you could employ?
  • Are there any local events that you could potentially set up a stall at?
  • If you have a unique theme or speciality, how can you make sure that you emphasise and make the most of this?
  • Many coffee shops have live music or hold other events such as book signings, are there any events you could host that would be appealing to your target market?
  • Are you going to sell merchandised material such a travel mugs or coffee cups in the shop?

Business Practicals

  • Make sure that you get all licences required to sell food and drink in your council area.
  • Do you have a sound knowledge and understanding of food hygiene and safety regulations? If not, it may be a good idea to take a quick course to re-familiarise yourself.
  • Make sure that your coffee shop adheres to all health and safety regulations.
  • Sort out all insurance practicals before you open for business.
  • If you plan to employ other members of staff, ensure that you keep up to date with all employment legislation (bearing in mind that these rules change regularly.)
  • It’s a very good idea to have a clear policy with regards to equal opportunities, you may wish to have a nosy at some other companies literature to help you

To be perfectly honest each of these sections could go on and on but we hope this little guide will give you an idea of the things you need to think about before opening a coffee shop. Decided a coffee shop is not the business for you? Maybe you would like to check out some of our other 'starting a ...' guides which include starting a B&B, a gardening business, a jewellery business, a bookstore and many many more!

Written with love and several cups by Eoin O'Hara

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Published on: 30th September 2013

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