You're back in business, your new safety procedures are in place, your takeaway menu is simple and your coffee is tasting great. Here are our FIVE top tips to make sure the customers choose you - and stay with you.
Shout about your re-opening
Let your community know you are back and what you are doing to protect them and your staff.
Don't be shy From store front signage to social media posts, make sure everyone knows what to expect and when. Remember, 43% of customers are choosing their shops based on the safety measures in place.
Web Cam and Pre-pay apps You might even consider adding a web cam, so customers can check the queue before they visit. Or a pre-pay app through which you can manage demand and reduce contact.
Promote your fresh new simplified menu with enticing high quality photos on social media posts.
Growth in Social Media engagement in older generations According to a Allegra, 47% of customers believe social media has been a positive thing during lockdown and many people have become more engaged on social than previously, including older age groups.
Live Feeds & updates Let people know real time when a particular batch brew is ready, or fresh madeleines are just out the oven. We're all living for great food and drink right now so you'll have a highly receptive audience.
Check out our latest blog 'Social media Tips for Cafes' over on our website
Go digital on loyalty
Ditch the paper loyalty cards in favour of a digital app. Not only is it safer, it will give you invaluable data, promotional flexibility and direct marketing opportunities.
Magic Stamp This is a great loyalty app that works well and is easily customisable to a business brand. They claim to generate a 50% increase in visit frequency after 3 months.
Stamp Me This is a fantastic affordable option for single cafes, but they do have options for groups too. Apparently, 95% of businesses found that customers using the app spend more on average than those who do not.
Yoyo Wallet One scan for payment, loyalty rewards and a digital receipt. Simple! With 1.7 million users it's another solid option to consider.
If your customers are finding it difficult to come to you, create ways to get to them!
Home Delivery A home delivery service is the most obvious. For those that can't quite justify a dedicated delivery driver, look to existing services like JustEat, Deliveroo & Ubereats, where you'll also benefit from broader publicity.
149% more coffee deliveries after lockdown According to Uber Eats, they have experienced a 149% rise in coffee orders made via its app since the UK went into lockdown in March. They also noted increased sales of sweet treats accompanying coffee orders, such as pain au chocolat, cinnamon swirl, millionaire’s shortbread, and croissants.
New players expected to emerge We expect to see more providers in this sector soon, with rumours of one app in particular that is specifically focussed on coffee!
Example: Smokin' Bean coffee truck Better still, put your cafe on wheels and brew coffee fresh to order as you make your way around the community. That's what Nicholas Campana has being doing with his Smokin Bean Truck (all with sound social distancing and hygiene measures on place of course). And it has certainly been putting smiles on faces in and around Epsom.
Diversify your offering and how you sell it!
Increase trip spend If you've got a queue, make the most of it. People want to make as few stops as possible. Increase your trip spend by retailing deli produce, brew kit, baking sets and/or gifts. Whatever plays to your strengths. People will be glad to pick up a few extras while they grab a decent coffee.
Sell Online If your new offering is unique and going down well enough, set yourself up with a web shop, so people can support local from the comfort of their own homes.
Example: Three Sisters Bake Three Sisters Bake is a well-loved group of destination cafes in the West of Scotland, known for their home-baked goods and delicious coffee. With most of their cafes closed due to their rural locations, and a paired back take-away service from their Glasgow shop, they have turned to online sales, creating home-baking packs that can be posted and enjoyed by families in lockdown. They have also boxed up their imfamous cream teas, offering sell-out collection slots each Saturday.
Emerging Coffee Shop Trends from the U.S.
Square x and the Specialty Coffee Association have compiled a report on how independent coffee shops in the U.S. are dramatically changing as a result of the pandemic. "Specialty coffee businesses across the country are evolving in how they serve communities and generate revenue during this unprecedented time. Amazingly, 3 in 4 Square coffee sellers have continued operating during shelter-in-place orders, finding ways to adapt to new circumstances. This shows tremendous resilience and creativity, from curbside coffee pickup to grocery-style markets, home delivery to expanded eCommerce. These trends seem to represent more than a moment in time—they likely indicate a greater transformation of the specialty coffee industry, and a new way that coffee shops work within the communities they serve." —Peter Giuliano, Chief Research Officer, Specialty Coffee Association