Location in town

madamegooseberry

New member
Jun 5, 2006
7
0
Midwest
Hello,
My daughter and I are in the planning stage of a coffee shop. We are questioning opening one in our town of about 30,000. One coffee/ice cream shop closed after two years. Another has opened in this really odd
building and is nothing more than an order counter. There is one old building that has had a coffee sign in the window for at least three years and I recently found out it was supposed to be a coffee shop but he couldn't get it going.
The space we want to investigate is next door to the high school, up from some apartments, and several small businesses up and down the street, two churches close by and one block off the main drag.
The problem we are having to committing to our town is small town politics and small town mentality. I keep hearing how difficult it is to get a business going here because of all the codes and regulations.
The building we are looking at is already a business (they're closing after 500 year of being here (retiring)). Fantastic potential because of location and when it really gets rolling could help revitalize downtown(?) I may be seeing this through rose-colored glasses. There are no real coffee shops within a 5 mile radius of our town.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated. We're looking at the building this afternoon.
 
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madamegooseberry

New member
Jun 5, 2006
7
0
Midwest
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Okay, found out there is already a contract on the building. Oh well. We weren't really at the "Let's buy a building" stage anyway. But we're just trying to get a realistic budget in place.

And the reason we are hesitant about a business in our town is because it has had a dead downtown for so many years that people are used to going to the next town to shop. (We are all suburbs and touching boundaries.) Local government is so short sighted that people don't want to put businesses here.

Would it be bad to start a coffee shop in a town like ours?
 

Kone Tiki

New member
Jan 5, 2006
6
0
Savannah, GA
This past October we opened a combo coffee shop/ice cream shop. Three ice cream shops had closed within 5 miles of us over the past few years. Through talking to Everyone, it wasn't because they weren't doing well, it was for various other reasons; divorce, unknowledgable owner selling poor product, and lastly owner absence & giving away of product.
Bottom line, talk to your neighbors, people who live in town because you never know what the history is. Although if you live in this town you know best...
Sounds like our town is about the same size as yours and people were thrilled that we opened. They were "waiting for a coffee shop" or "waiting for a homemade ice cream store" but I guess no one took the plunge (correctly) before us. Keep talking to everyone - even potential suppliers - and do it the best you can. People will notice.
By the way, we decided to open on the outskirts of downtown in a residential area because of some issues like poor parking and a bit of crime in some parts. Our downtown is being revitalized now but it can be scary to be there at the beginning. May be worth it to tough it out. Our main street is now hopping!
Good luck
 

Muddycup

New member
Dec 4, 2005
201
0
New York
our stores have all been in a small cities 7000 - 100,000 and we have gone into areas that have been depressed and we have been apart of the economic revival. The key is to get the best location you can in the downtown area, find the largest space 2000' or larger, negotiate a 20 year plus lease at a bargain rent.

open early stay open late have lots of events and you will become an anchor for the area and watch waht happens, you already have the population and the customer base, if you build it they will come.
 

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