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New coffee shop owner - product diversification; multiple streams of income

KMM

New member
Mar 16, 2012
23
0
Tomorrow I will finish my second week of my new coffee shop opening. With using only social media and word of mouth advertising in a small Alabama town, my first two weeks have been a good slow steady. I'm open 7:30am-2pm M-F and also on Wed and Friday evening 6:30-9:30pm. I have not had a mad rush, except for my Wednesday night shift. Last night, I had about 15 customers from 8:30-9pm all ordering Frappes and smoothies, except for two lattes. It's really hot here in Alabama! I'm focusing mainly on my brewed, espresso and blended drinks, having only a small selection of pastries, some locally made. I'll be getting Krispy Kreme doughnut delivery beginning on Monday. Even though I want my focus to be on the drinks, I am always thinking of other revenue sources. I plan to eventually serve 3-5 types of sandwiches but will not start that for a couple of months. I'm also considering an egg-based breakfast sandwich as well. I'll probably start the breakfast sandwich first. esust a slow, steady flow of customers. My question is this: I have been researching having a small glass top freezer to hold individually packaged novelty ice cream. I can get the freezer for free from a company who will supply the ice cream packages. Have any of you done this before in your coffee shop? if so, what were the results?? My concern is that more customers (than what I'd want), might by a cheaper ice cream product rather than a more expensive frappe or smoothie and that the freezer may actually lower revenues/profits rather than add to them. Another concern, more from a morality/ethical/conscience standpoint, is that I might be offering too much SUGAR to a society already over weight????

I'd really appreciate advice from this group, I know it is not totally coffee related but I hope it's okay that I posted???

Also, I'm looking for a good decaf coffee bean to offer. My roaster doesn't do decaf and I've had customers ask for it.

thanks so much and sorry for being so long

KMM
 

topher

Super Moderator
Staff member
Aug 14, 2003
3,804
29
Boca Raton
Me personally do not have a problem offering sugar treats....That would be like a bartender saying he feels bad selling booze. Why doesn't your roaster roast decaf? That seems odd to me. Have you requested that your roaster start roasting decaf? Did you know you can cook eggs on your espresso machine?
 

PinkRose

Super Moderator
Staff member
Feb 28, 2008
5,225
11
Near Philadelphia, PA
My question is this: I have been researching having a small glass top freezer to hold individually packaged novelty ice cream. I can get the freezer for free from a company who will supply the ice cream packages. Have any of you done this before in your coffee shop? if so, what were the results?? My concern is that more customers (than what I'd want), might by a cheaper ice cream product rather than a more expensive frappe or smoothie and that the freezer may actually lower revenues/profits rather than add to them. Another concern, more from a morality/ethical/conscience standpoint, is that I might be offering too much SUGAR to a society already over weight????


KMM

Hello KMM,

Wow....it sounds like your head is spinning! You've come to the right place to bounce your ideas around and get help from some of our experienced forum members.

I'll address a portion of your post now, and think about the rest for another time.

I work in a cafe that is located close to an ice cream shop. Often people come in looking for ice cream, and when they see that we don't offer it, they usually decide to get a smoothie or another cold blended drink....even though all they have to do is walk across the way to the ice cream store. I'm pretty sure that if you put a freezer with ice cream treats in it, you'll really hurt your smoothie and frappe business. Why tempt them to buy a less expensive ice cream treat instead of paying more for a smoothie or frappe?

I often stand behind the counter and see overweight people come in and ask for high calorie-fat items. In the back of my mind I'm saying, "you need this like you need a hole in the head," but I just smile and make the drinks for them.

I particularly get annoyed when overweight parents come in with extremely overweight kids, and they stand there and offer their kids items that they really shouldn't be having. I'm tempted to direct them to lower calorie selections, but I've found out that "they want what they want," and all I can do is get them what they want and shake my head (after they leave).

If you plan to have Krispy Cream donuts, you may want to think about also having something less outrageous (like chocolate chip cookies or biscotti) for those individuals who want something with their coffee, but they dont' want to get too crazy about it.

On another note....in the hot weather, we have huge sales of bottled water, Gatorade, apple juice, Pepsi, etc. Parents seem to get the more expensive drinks for themselves and get the Gatorade, etc. for the kids. The bottled water is a big "to go" item.

Hang in there, and keep bouncing your ideas and concerns here at the Coffee Forum!

Rose
 

hannah2012

New member
Apr 5, 2012
13
0
Hi KKM!

So you might want to find another roaster that is more attentive to your needs. Even the tiniest roasters have decaf! I also think the decaf drinkers are some of your most important customers - they're not drinking it for caffeine, it's for the taste only; so make it a good one, fresh beans, etc.

Agree with PinkRose 100%... don't tempt with a cheaper option; focus on making the best smoothies you can. Smoothies are easy if you put some recipe effort in it - and you can make them very healthy too with fresh fruit. You can make your own market - you don't have to try to take a bit here and there and over extend your offerings.

And to Tophers comment about eggs on the espresso machine - play around with this. You can find a tiny pitcher, put 1.5 large eggs + a tad of 1/2 and 1/2, and steam for a few seconds. Nice and fluffy! Watch out for egg particle flying everywhere. I saw it done at a shop with these little pitchers and a cloth over it. It's brilliantly great!!! You can beat the eggs in the morning during prep, and put into portion cups.

Good luck!!!
 
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KMM

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Mar 16, 2012
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New business ideas

Thanks Rose and others for these comments. I do offer bottled water and OJ, biscotti and homemade muffins. I've started adding fresh/frozen fruit in addition to the fruit concentrate blend for my smoothies and they are very tasty. I'm going to keep experimenting with more fresh fruit. I think for now I am going to hold off on the ice cream and give myself time to perfect the beverages that I'm serving and work on a small selection of food items.

Do you use the steam wand to cook eggs? Very interesting!!! I have limited counter space and not a full kitchen so this might be a good idea for me!!!

thanks again,

KMM
 

expat

New member
May 1, 2012
430
1
Ireland
Krispy Kreme doughnuts! I'd kill for a Krispy Kreme doughnut! A dozen hot Krispy Kreme doughnuts (to split with my family of course!), and a glass of ice cold milk (full fat, of course!) Wow, just thinking about it makes me weak at the knees.

Now that I've vented -- in the south I'd have iced tea (you probalby do) with flavor options -- mango, peach, mint. If you've got syrups for flavoring coffee you can experiment with those in tea.

As to food don't lose your focus if you are a coffee shop have great coffee first and foremost.

The easiest for food is to premake it -- three types of sandwich, two types of breakfast taco, a salad -- and it is what it is, take it or leave it. That'll cut down on your labor, and stress, and guess what, people usually take what you've got. And when it is gone, its gone. The caveat is making food may entail a heavier health department presence/regulation/fees/etc., so get all your T-s and I-s crossed and dotted before jumping in.

Limited supply that is sold out gives the impression that it is so good they'll have to come back and give it a try. And if X sold out because it was so good, then if I buy Y it will probably be good too.
 
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KMM

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Mar 16, 2012
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I'm in Atmore, Alabama at 112 W. Ridgeley Street
 
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