Choosing your #1 Café Location

How to choose the perfect cafe location?

If you don’t start a business in the right way, then you’re going to have to put much greater effort to work your way back up later on... so let’s get it right from the beginning when choosing your ideal café store location.

Overall, we can say this is a process of becoming absolutely certain- in the end all we want is to feel at peace with our decision. Once you’ve set up shop, it may not be easy to just change your mind on a whim, so first of all you need to decide whether you’re ready to commit now and buy the property or if it’s better to play it safe by leasing. Whatever your path may be, there are many factors to take into consideration which we’ve clarified by providing the following checklist for you to tick off as you drive around town.

Can I see you clearly?

If you want to attract attention on the high street, you need to make your coffee shop noticeable from many angles. If you want to bring customers in from the street, big signs and windows will help. Lure in customers with a stand out design or just play it simple and make them feel like they're in their own lounge at home.

Take this Korean café example...

Now that's visibility!

Where's the entrance?

What matters in the end is getting your customers inside. Have in mind that all kinds of people could come to your store- is there a bike stand, car park, nearby public transport, wheelchair access etc.? Naturally, the more clear routes to your café, the more people will come in. If you're not on a major shopping street, there better be accurate and bold signage pointing in your direction!

How many people are in town?

Decent visibility and clear entrances are useless if there's no one in the area to take notice. To locate your café in an area with a high density of foot or car traffic will make it known far and wide without people needing to come in.You’ll find a variety of customers that come in knowing who you are without you knowing them. Bustling environments like city centers or shopping and tourist areas are ideal locations for this free publicity.

Why love your competitors?

Working alongside competitors requires wisdom and good judgement. If you believe your product is going to best serve the community, don’t hesitate to set up shop next door to even your biggest rivals. Developing healthy communication channels with your café competition can be an invaluable key to bringing your community the collective service that will benefit it most.

Are there complementary businesses nearby?

Opening your café near related shops like bakeries and ice cream parlours will create an ecoystem in your area, that is if your café doesn't already offer those products. Some people will choose to have a coffee after lunch or shopping, and out of all that they've walked past during the day, your café should be the first one that comes to mind when they need a peaceful place to relax.

Can you find old, young, savvy, students, fast-fooders, diners, families etc.?

Carrying out a survey to find out the proportion of your target market that frequent your desired area is a must if you want to be sure of even the smallest potential to take care of loyal customers. Are there Universities, schools, train stations or other services nearby to kick your café mentality from survival mode to consistent growth?

How private or public will it be?

Considering size for customer volume, shape for layout and flow, as well as outdoor seating availability and potential refurbishment will ensure your new home provides thorough functionality.

 

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Sometimes people gel best in a simple environment.

Making a final decision can be a drawn out process if you don't have a core question. So let’s clarify once and for all by posing the ultimate question “what do you base all of the above factors on?”. Within all the questions you ask, the overarching point is the potential they have to attract, retain and engage your customers. Once you’ve narrowed your options down to the final few, you will have to take the last few, more careful and often most tiring steps to pick a winner. 

One method of breaking down the last steps of your decision making journey is going directly to the local area and spending time with locals. Someone might tell you that, even though you thought you’d found your ideal location, there was cafe in the same spot a few years ago that couldn't make success.

Finally, to secure the best scenario, visit the premises together with your family, colleagues and even potential customers to receive a wide range of perspectives. After going through this process of asking the right questions continuously until you find your ideal location, you can finally move in! Ahhh, peace at last yes Just don't forget to take Loyverse Cafe POS with you wink

I’m sure you have more things to add to that, help out our global community with any of your tips and tricks in the comments below.

 

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Even though you’ve got the perfect location, there are still more factors to consider to really to get your business up and running well. Next time we’ll be discussing in depth about building your brand.

Choosing the best cafe location