Starting an office coffee service

TakeFive

New member
May 11, 2006
3
0
Florida, USA
Hello all! I just found this site and have been very impressed with what I have seen so far. I do need some advice, though...

Not long after college I worked for a small office coffee service. Basically it was a one-man operation: I did the ordering, delivered the products, serviced the accounts, etc. Being part of a rather large institutional foods company, the accounts were already established, suppliers in place, corporate accounts, et al. As I recall it was a fun and simple job, but at about $3.50 an hour I soon moved on to bigger and better things.

Recently I have contemplated starting a similar office coffee service. I am somewhat familiar with operations such as Standard and Gold Cup, but I feel there is room for another, more "local" service. Can anyone give me some suggestions as to how to get such a business off the ground? I'm not interested in a franchise, and starting capital is pretty low.

Thanks in advance for any help you can give me!
 

TYKES

New member
Jun 12, 2006
9
0
Milton, FL
this is a service that i will also be solicting to local businesess once i get up and running, but i am going to open a full service coffee bar as well.

My question is about insurances? have you looked into what is needed in that aspect of things....im concerned of the liability
 

jkp

New member
Jun 9, 2006
5
0
This operation would be similar to starting any other business. If your capital is low, you could increase it by using credit, taking out a loan (from a bank or SBA), or just manage to use the bare minimum that you need (eg, don't get pre-printed envelopes if you only have five clients, etc.)

Personally, I would start networking this business to friends and family members. Let them stir up some noise about your company at their workplace and wait for some word-of-mouth business to come in. Soliciting businesses is a bad move in my mind until you have a solid base.

As for insurance, talk to your lawyer about that. Lawyers do cost a lot, but they are worth it in the end.
 

JDuella

New member
Nov 30, 2011
6
0
Will you be placing coffee vending machines as well? We have a KCup Vending Machine (for use with Keurig) in our office, and I can't say enough great things about it! From the standpoint of a business, the cost control that a vending machine for a single-cup maker can offer is amazing!! Just thought I'd throw that out there for you to research.
KCup Vending . com (no spaces)
 

Biznerdjm

New member
Dec 5, 2011
46
0
I'm a big fan of social media! You can use it for everything. Use it to survey prospects on the types of coffee they would like, when they would like it to be delivered, how they would like it to be delivered etc. You can use Survey Monkey for the surveys. You can then use Facebook and Twitter to update coffee lovers on your businesses success. Don't use twitter for tweeting specials like "Free coffee for the first 10 customers". Tweet about yourself and your journey with your new business and people will fall in love with you and you'll create a really nice following online.

Hope this helps
 

Vinfotech

New member
Dec 14, 2011
23
0
You show take reviews from the people and serve the coffee variety which are lastly liked by them.
 

Creative_Studios

New member
Mar 14, 2013
11
0
Hi TakeFive,

We have a guy that comes to our office building every day. He comes in a blue van that has a coffee cup on the side, he will honk 3 times in the car park. Open the back up and he has everything he needs. When he started coming around we didn't pay much attention. Then one person went down to try the coffee, next thing you know we are all going down once we hear the 3 honks.

My advice to you:

Buy a van, get a bit creative and kit this van out and make a mobile cafe. Then just drive around, like an ice cream truck... Or you could buy an Ice Cream truck and re-paint it.

Don't rely on people pre ordering, just go to offices, make it obvious your there to sell coffee and they will come out. Things will be slow to begin with, but soon enough, you will have repeat business.

The one key thing here is this, the only way you will get repeat business is to have mastered the art of coffee. People have there own coffee shops, if you want to change that it has to be good coffee!
 
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