It’s a nice dream to have your own quaint café full of friendly faces and fulfilled appetites. However, the reality is that running a café, especially in a tourist hub like Yorkshire, is a competitive business and you need to be prepared to fight. Not only are you dealing with lots of competition but also the customer’s desire for that perfect spot to get away, relax and enjoy a bite and a drink. If you do want to jump into the cafe business, though, how do you get started?
Let’s take a look…
Stick to a business plan
Before you get started, you need to formulate a business plan. You want to outline your practices, your goals and your milestones so you have something to measure yourself against. Running a business without any idea of what road you should be following means you’ll have unfocused aims from the outset. That leads to decisions without direction and potential disaster. There are loads of business plans you can get off the net, even for specific kinds of cafes and coffee houses, so get started.
Curb appeal is what drives the passing potential customers inside. They need to be invited and since they haven’t tasted your food or drink yet, you need to entice them. You need to stand out amongst the street, first and foremost. Make sure your place is always visible and easily identifiable. Make an impact, visually, and you’ll be catching the curiosity and hopefully the custom of a lot of the people passing your place in the street.
Get trained and certified
What people are looking for, especially from smaller places that might not be part of a chain, is reliability and the ability to deliver. Too many cafes and coffee houses skirt the lines of acceptable dining and you should aim to rise way above that. Get yourself trained in one of the aspects of your service and have certification you can proudly display. The Coffee Community, for example, is a great stop if you want the focus of your café to be on coffee.
It’s in the coffee
Even if it’s not your place of expertise, it’s important that you provide a great cup of coffee. The simple fact is that it’s a part of life for millions of people and thus guaranteed to be one of your top orders. If you can’t provide a great cup of coffee, you’re turning away customers constantly. Make use of authentic espresso machines and good beans. Serve great coffee and you’ll have a customer base to build from no matter what. Make sure you listen to what others say as well – plenty of cafes in Leeds will shout about the likes of North Star coffee, and for good reason, so remember that word of mouth counts.
Just like the curb appeal, you need something inside the café to hook those who have come that far. Sometimes it can be plush chairs and a cosy atmosphere. Sometimes it can be a niche or gimmick interior design. The way to a person’s heart is their stomach, however. One way to stick out is to master a recipe, even if it’s just one. If you can choose a signature dish different from the others, it can be what keeps people coming back again and again.
Categories: Food News