Coffee shops make for excellent small businesses in the UK. They are a place to catch up with friends, enjoy a first date or spend an afternoon working away from the office. A speciality coffee shop often provides dreamy Instagram posts of latte art and banana pancakes. What’s not to love?
Every independent coffee shop should have its own aesthetic and niche. Whether you prefer a sleek style or a rustic atmosphere, your coffee shops need to stand out from the crowd. Here are few things to consider when starting your own speciality coffee shop.
An eye-catching logo
You need to create a strong brand identity for your coffee shop. A sleek logo can look fantastic on a takeaway coffee cup and encourage customers to take a photo with it. Your coffee shop needs to be Instagrammable so people will spread the word about it.
What coffee will you use?
You could source locally and integrate an ethos of sustainability into your shop. Gen-Z is looking to invest in businesses that help the environment and consider the ethical implications. You need to pick your suppliers carefully and make sure they are the right fit for your company. If you choose a special type of coffee, you need to find a supplier for that specific type of bean. Choose a supplier based on their values, reviews and pricing.
You also need to plan and work out what kind of coffee machines you will be using. Regular personal coffee machines won’t be good for servicing lots of customers. Using a commercial coffee machine can help you serve customers quickly and effectively, helping your business to grow and keep customers happy.
Think about location
The location of your coffee shop needs to be focused on your target customer. If you are targeting students, your coffee shop should be in student areas or near campus. Or, if you’re targeting gym-goers with ultra-healthy drinks – you need to be near the gyms.
The legal stuff
Setting up a business always comes with paperwork and a few legal things. You need to choose a legal structure and register with HMRC. For example, are you a sole trader, or do you have a partner? Either way, you need to pay corporation tax and register for VAT.
You also need to look into small business insurance, covering public liability and employers’ liability insurance. Insurance can feel like yet another added cost, but you will thank yourself in the long run.
Think about your style
Your coffee shop could be botanical with plants hanging from the ceiling or urban with exposed pipework. Choose a style and make sure it’s reflected throughout your shop design, social media and branding.
Market the business
Marketing is essential and can drastically improve the success of your coffee shop. You need to utilise social media platforms, like Instagram and Facebook, by regularly posting high-quality content. Share your new coffee blends, take photos of your shop and introduce your team. Many people look for new spots via Instagram, Google My Business listings and Facebook.
Overall, pour love into your venture and make your coffee shop a relaxing haven for people to relax and catch up.