Beyond securing a prime location, delivering high-quality products, and maintaining a five-star review score on Yelp or Google how do you gain new customers and attract the best ones to come back daily?
The Coffee Shop US Market
Coffee shops are part of the specialty eatery industry, which also includes outlets specializing in products such as bagels, donuts, frozen yogurt, and ice cream. In 2016, First Research reports that the US coffee shop industry includes more than 22,000 stores with combined annual revenue of about $12 billion. By 2021, the industry is expected to reach $46.2 billion. Today, 30% of the industry’s sales is served by specialty coffee shops while 70% is generated by the top 20 companies.
To be successful, smaller players depend on their abilty to secure prime locations, drive store traffic and deliver high-quality products with packaging that appeals to Generation X and the millenials. For independent coffee shops, the use of technology for marketing, promotions and engagement is primarily limited to social media and features that their POS solution may offer.
Understanding Coffee Drinking Habits
Coffee is one of the most commoditized products on Earth. People have plenty of options, specially when you are a resident or a visitor in urban cities like Seattle, New Orleans, Portland, San Francisco, Oakland, San Diego, Austin, Denver, Honolulu, Washington DC, New York City, Los Angeles and more. As an independent coffee shop it can be tough to attract new customers and maintain a loyal following. Yet, consistent repeat visitors are an essential and indispensable part of the mathetimatical equation to cultivating a healthy business.
Tip #1: Get to know your customers
When you know and understand why and when people drink coffee, crafting an engagement strategy to reach, attract and bring customers back to your venue becomes an exact science. Traditionally, the primary data that a coffee shop depends on comes from their POS solution which is also tied to their inventory management. These data points are important and crucial in operating a profitable coffee shop, but not be the only data that smart coffee shop owners and managers should rely on when it comes to the predictability around when customers come to the store, the frequency of their visit and how much they spend during each visit. Understanding when and why people walk in to a coffee shop beyond your own location is a potential area of growth for your venue.
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