Traffic counts and average sales


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Mar 15, 2007
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Hello to all,

I''m new to the forum so if I ask a question that everyone has asked a thousand times, please forgive me.

I''m pending a lease signing on a location with great accessibilty and visibility as well as a nice traffic count (for the community). Wondering if anyone has calculated what percentage of their street traffic count actually translates to customers.

Also, what does the average customer spend at Starbucks, Caribou or an indy shop for that matter. I''m still crunching numbers and would like to compare other''s experience with my own research.

My Thanks...Mark
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Thanks for tip Andrew. Only a handful of postings actually address the traffic count/sales issue. Most are just guessing what number to use in their biz plan. I was hoping of for a bit more definitive analysis from someone out there running a successful shop.

You will not find just one "definitive answer", rather several different (and often contradictory answers) based on actual facts and valid observations. The seemingly endless variations on the cafe theme, wide range of operator skills, totally different markets that seem demographically similar, etcetera - just add too much complexity to yield a single true answer to your question. Even chains that have working models do not have 100% success opening new sites based solely on demographic and traffic studies... while stubbornly optimistic entrepreneurs are often successful (in spite of overwhelming data that suggests they should never even have considered opening) in a particularly improbable location.
Of course the odds of opening another successful location of a known working model (using available market and traffic data as part of pre-opening due diligence) are significantly better than a first time start-up.
The models that we have developed for such an analysis come from years of data at hundreds of locations; even then, as CafeBlue points out, they are most accurate for businesses that are expanding an existing concept to a new area or launching a new product, rather than creating a new business entirely.

In the analysis we perform for any new concept, weeks of calculations are necessary to make adjustments for the new theme, product, style and target demographic from our pre-existing models. Copying the information used by another coffee business will be just as accurate as the business plan "guesses." We've invested tens of thousands of dollars into creating these tools and licensing data -- it's unlikely that you will be able to find this very proprietary and valuable information for free on a public bulletin board service.
I too have questions

Hello Everyone,
I have been contemplating opening a coffee shop/lounge for the past couple months. I have been doing quite a bit of research on the whole process, as well as trying to determine if this will be financially worthwhile. I am running into trouble determining how much $ I can make. I have staked out several coffee shops including but not limited to Starbucks, and the # of patrons per day varies greatly. I guess there are several factors that need to be taken into account, but I''m wondering how I can make the ultimate decision on whether or not I should go for it.
I''m also wondering if I shoule hire a consultant and how much this would run me if they began assisting from the initial planning stages to the opening. Any input will be very much appreciated!