Unique Coffee Shop Ideas

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Build on the coffee shop as a community gathering place.
Build on the coffee shop as a community gathering place. (Image: Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

The coffee shop can provide an engaging social and cultural experience within a community. In addition to a location to grab a hot cup of coffee, it has become a mini-office for the scores of cafe dwellers who find the availability of coffee and snack service with Internet access a handy substitute for more traditional work spaces. The opportunity to engage coffee shop customers abounds.

Menus

Feature an artisan coffee roaster in-store using authentic commercial roaster equipment. This creates an authentic coffee experience for customers who value traditional coffee brewing techniques.

Offer unique tea brands that provide additional options for visitors. Also, capture the lunch crowd with a bistro-style menu that features an assortment of pastries, sandwiches, soups, juices and other soft drinks.

Performances

Live performances build on the tradition of the coffee shop as a cultural environment. Set up special times for entertainment. Be unique and mix it up. One night can showcase a mellow jazz flutist while another night can feature a folk guitarist. Karaoke and open mike nights are other options that give customers an opportunity to engage in the entertainment and build the store's reputation as a center of community activity.

Art Shows

Use the coffee shop wall space to host rotating art shows. This offers a great outlet for local artists. Featured artists will draw their fans and support-base to the store. Coffee shop owners can market art show openings to the local media and circulate event fliers within the community, further building brand. Additionally, artwork that is offered for sale translates into a commission to the coffee shop.

Branding and Marketing

Design a coffee shop logo and have it printed on ceramic coffee mugs and stainless-steel traveling mugs that is offered for sale to customers as gift items. Quality t-shirts are also a great retail offering that also gives the coffee shop free advertising.

Additionally, store punch cards are a good marketing and branding tool for coffee shops. It features the shop's logo and builds customer loyalty through the incentive to earn a free cup of coffee after a certain number of purchases.

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References

  • "Start and Run Your Own Coffee Shop and Lunch Bar"; Heather Lyon; 2010
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