It’s easier said than done to successfully run a coffee shop, as there are many obstacles and variables, from supply chain to customer base.
The most pressing matter is customer base, as not knowing how to attract customers to your coffee shop means your business will not last very long. That is why we prepared this guide.
How To Attract Customers To Your Coffee Shop
What we call coffee quality encompasses lots of aspects, but you should focus the most on taste and scent.
With a hard-to-resist coffee scent, you have a much higher chance to invite passengers in. Believe us; a coffee lover will drop whatever they are doing and rush straight to your shop the moment they smell good coffee.
The taste makes long-term word-of-mouth marketing easier for you. People are much more likely to recommend a coffee shop with a high-quality coffee taste for their friends. As a result, your shop should quickly accrue a dependable reputation in the local community.
A coffee store with lots of choices always has a bigger potential customer base. This strategy works extremely well if you happen to have an alluring sign, letting passengers know that you have their favorite coffee blend ready. The chance of people checking out your store is surely much higher.
Just like with coffee quality, this approach not only attracts new customers right away but also improves your brand. A coffee shop that constantly puts out new, interesting coffee varieties on a regular basis is sure to gain a footing quickly.
However, you want to be careful about what you put out, as blindly charging in is never a wise option.
For instance, if your neighborhood is full of office workers, you want to focus on takeaway offerings. The prime example of this type of coffee is cold brew. Hot chocolates and tea of different flavors can also be good additions.
Humans rely the most on their eyes, so an appealing visual impression has the highest chance to draw them in. A good visual appeal, while surely relying a lot on décor, is not limited to just this one aspect.
For example, a well-decorated sign will still draw the eyes of people passing through. Once you manage to pique their interest, you have already won half the battle. Nonetheless, you must be extra careful while designing the sign, as it can be a double-edged sword.
If you go overboard with colors or patterns, it will only have the opposite effects of what you want. Finding the balance between simplicity and extravagance is the key to a successful sign.
Now that you are done with the sign, of course, it is time to work on the most vital part, the décor and the storefront in particular. You don’t need to be scared of the potential workload, though, as most shops do not need to renovate the storefront completely.
To give you some ideas, you can consider adding exposed pipes, industrial lamps, and thick brick walls to turn your regular coffee shop into an industrial-style one. This look has been trendy for quite a while, and it doesn’t seem to slow down anytime soon.
If you are confident in your skill as a barista, you can try impressing customers with completely hand-made coffees. Obviously, this approach carries the disadvantage of slower service, but you can attract real coffee enthusiasts.
They can be true advocates and spread the word about your shop to their circles. It won’t take long for your shop to be known in all kinds of coffee lover communities if you play your cards right.
Many people scoff at this idea, but it is actually one of the most efficient ways to draw in customers. You won’t believe how many people simply want to relax with a cup of coffee and scroll through funny videos for half a day.
They will surely check out your shop the moment they see the words “Free Wi-Fi” on the sign. After all, the number of coffee shops currently providing free Internet connections is far from enough. If you can take this chance, you can leave quite a deep impression.
The cost is also not as high as you think, as phones don’t use much data. You can also cut the cost even more if you are wise while choosing among the options your Internet provider puts out.
Customer satisfaction will surely improve, and along with it, customer loyalty. But bear in mind to be smart with the way you set everything up. A good example is setting a password and only giving it out if customers ask you.
It’s quite surprising how much of a difference such a small change can make. With the action of asking for the password, the Wi-Fi is no longer completely free. The customer now needs to work, albeit very easily, to get it.
As such, they will value the free Wi-Fi you give, even more, leaving a much better impression.
Word of Mouth Marketing
Incentives And Discounts
The incentive is the bread and butter of every business, not just coffee shops. Use it right, and you can attract a surprisingly large crowd in no time. But it is another double-edged sword that can cut you as deep as it can help you.
The most obvious example of an incentive is, obviously, discounts. This method has always been a sure-fire, capable of improving the number of new guests by a wide margin. But it is not easy to control, as you are essentially giving up profit for more customers. Continuing it for a long time is simply impossible.
In times like this, it’s better to think outside the box and employ different tactics. For example, you can offer a refillable coffee mug campaign. Not many people use the feature itself, but everyone loves the idea that they can drink another mug free of charge.
You don’t need to worry about losing too much revenue. Due to the nature of coffee, it’s actually not that easy for people to drink more than one cup in a row.
Once people know about your interesting and profitable incentives, they will start talking. Everyone living near your shop will pay the shop for at least one visit to satisfy their curiosity.
Providing Good Customer Service
Some people believe that customer service is purely about retaining the already existing customer base. That is a false myth. While customer service does retain and appease your customer base, its potential is so much more.
The moment people realize that you do care about them, there will be a bond formed. With this bond, you no longer need to bribe them with free drinks, refillable mugs, etc., for them to come back or spread the word. They will do the deed on their own, introducing your shop to friends and family.
The easiest way to improve customer service is to increase the service speed. People tend to get irritated easily if they have to wait a long time, especially when they still haven’t gotten their morning coffee fix.
Next is, certainly, the staff. Welcoming and friendly staff means a huge difference between customers coming back with friends and not coming back at all. We consider it a worthy investment to at the very least train your staff in the art of customer service.
Of course, you do need to treat your staff well for them to work with the best attitude.
These days, the world revolves around social media. Apps like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc., open up a completely new customer base for your coffee shop.
Of these apps, the most vital ones are Facebook and Instagram. Both of which allow you the farthest reach possible. All you need to do is regularly post photos of your coffee arts and videos or stories of you making these arts.
If you strike gold and go viral, the increase in customer number will be simply unmeasurable.
Bloggers are a force to be reckoned with, even in this age of social media. There still are a lot of people, especially old-timers, relying on bloggers to recommend many things for them. This demographic also happens to be the one with the highest proportion of coffee drinkers.
As such, you want to find influential coffee bloggers in your vicinity and offer them an amazing time at your coffee. This way, they can write a good review and draw in a surprisingly large customer base.
After reading through this guide on how to attract customers to your coffee shop, we hope that you now know what to do. We can’t say which method is the best, as they all have conditions in which they shine the most. Depending on your situation, you should employ a mix of the techniques we have introduced.
It’s also important to remember that drawing in customers is not the be-all and end-all for your coffee business. That is why you need to focus the most on coffee quality and customer service, as these will be the backbone of the whole operation.
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