If you’re passionate about coffee, why not take that passion and turn it into a profitable business? Starting a coffee shop franchise is a great option and a solid investment right now, with plenty of potential for profit and a lot of consumer demand to captivate. Read on, and discover exactly how to achieve success in the coffee sector and launch your own coffee shop franchise effectively.
The UK coffee sector is huge, with cafes and coffee shops up and down the country forming a £4 billion market that employs over 87,000 individuals [IBISWorld]. But how should you go about entering this industry? How can you ensure that you choose the right coffee shop franchise for you and make an investment that’ll work for you (and earn you money) in the long term? Find out below!
What does a coffee shop business do?
A coffee shop business sells coffee, other hot drinks and often a range of snacks and sandwich-style foods to customers. Some coffee businesses are based out of a single retail premises, while others choose to make a career change with a coffee van franchise, which provides the same stuff to customers but does so on the go. The option that’s right for you will largely depend on your own preferences, from Coffee Blue all the way to Sweet Spot. Though your day-to-day tasks will differ depending on the investment you make, here are some responsibilities you’re very likely to fulfil if you become a barista via franchising:
- Managing a team of employees/managing your own time and work
- Looking after and maintaining a premises/van/fleet of vans
- Looking after and maintaining equipment
- Greeting, communicating with and responding to the demands of customers
- Taking customer orders and serving coffees/other drinks/food
- Managing inventory and stock
- Managing your business
- Marketing your business
>> Read more:
Why consider running a cafe franchise?
The high level of demand for coffee in the UK is the biggest reason to think about opening a cafe franchise. But it’s not the only one! In fact, there are many different advantages to running your own coffee shop franchise - some inherent to franchising, and some unique to the coffee industry and the work of owning and managing a coffee shop/cafe. Advantages such as:
- The extensive availability of franchisor training and support
- The chance to pursue a true passion in your professional life
- The access to a proven business model and an established customer base
- The opportunity to enjoy a dynamic, varied and creative working week
- The reduced risk level compared to starting from scratch
- The chance to become an integral part of your local community
A coffee house can be an incredible resource in any community. By establishing a successful coffee shop, you will [generate a sense of togetherness]. Coffee houses have been bringing people together for hundreds of years. Perhaps your coffee business will add to this grand tradition.
- Coffee Shop Startups
How to start a cafe franchise
With an idea of what you’ll be doing and why you’ll be doing it, it’s time to dive into the specifics of starting a cafe franchise. From this moment to the point at which you sign a franchise agreement and start actively running your coffee shop franchise, you need to complete the following three steps...
1. Consider your strengths and find the right franchise fit
The first thing to do when you’re on the verge of an investment like this? Evaluate your strengths to find a suitable franchise fit or sector niche. Do you love working directly with customers, serving their needs and putting smiles on faces? If so, you’ll probably want to look for a lower-cost investment option which allows you to be more hands-on.
Or, if you love managing teams and seeing the bigger picture, you’ll want to make a larger-scale managerial-style investment. In most cases, you won’t need any experience or qualification to thrive as a franchisee - franchisor training will cover any and all knowledge gaps. But do be aware that especially for larger-scale investments, networks might be looking for business management experience or similar.
2. Research the cafe sector/the niche you’ll occupy
With a better idea of where you’re heading and a gathered pool of franchise businesses that interest you as a potential investment option, it’s time to get to know the sector (and potentially, your niche within the sector) better. What’s the current state of the coffee industry at the tail-end of 2021? Which coffee trends are dominating consumer conversation right now, and very much worth knowing about?
The more you know, the better equipped you’ll be to make your own cafe franchise stand out, in terms of your product offerings and in terms of the way that you position your marketing. How can you be distinct, carving out your own space in an industry that’s so full of options?
Your café or restaurant’s niche makes people choose it over all the other options out there—of which there is no shortage. It’s what draws them in, makes them come back, and gets them excited to tell their friends that they must try your cappuccino or signature cocktail, or gaze upon your local art or warehouse-meets-cozy-abode aesthetic.
- Julie Beals, Espresso Services
>> Read more:
- Franchising 101: The Official Franchise Start Up Checklist (Part 1)
- Franchising 101: The Official Franchise Start Up Checklist (Part 2)
- New Year, New Career: No Better Time Than Now to Start a Franchise Today
- Franchising 101: 8 Signs You're Ready to Start a Franchise
- Starting a New Business Doesn't Always Lead to Immediate Success: Here Are 5 Ways to Change That
- It's Never Too Late to Start a New Business
3. Do your due diligence prior to investment
Your final step before investing and committing to a legally binding agreement should ALWAYS be to do your due diligence. Review the FDD, analyse the opportunity in full and speak with anyone and everyone that you can about the business. Ask your franchisor all the questions that you have. Speak with existing franchisees about their experiences. When the time comes to sign the franchise agreement, seek legal advice on its contents to ensure that everything is above board. Important questions for your franchisor include:
- What set-up and launch support will I be provided with?
- What initial training will I be provided with?
- What ongoing training and support will I receive?
- What happens if I want to sell my business?
- What will you do to help if my business is underperforming?
- How long will it take for me to recoup my initial investment?
Start running your own business right now with a cafe franchise investment
Franchising is an exciting adventure, and there’s always more to learn along the way. To continue your coffee shop research, stay on Point Franchise and discover how to run your cafe effectively post-launch with articles such as six tips for marketing your coffee shop franchise and four tips for building a business plan for a successful coffee shop franchise.
Cara Squires, Point Franchise ©