Cooking has always been one of my favorite pastimes. However, for many years, my cooking skills were limited only to those dishes that I was used to eating on a regular basis. A few years ago I decided to expand my horizons and challenged myself to learn a new dish from around the world each week. I am proud to say that I completed that challenge and learned a lot along the way. Today, I have decided to start this blog as a way to not only honor my accomplishment, but to share with the rest of the world everything that I learned about international cuisine.
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Some coffee shops are designed to get customers in and out quickly. Other coffee shops are designed to encourage guests to linger. And there are benefits to having guests linger. They tend to spend more, and they also start to feel like your shop is a homey, comfortable place, which encourages them to come back again and again. So how do you design a coffee shop that encourages guests to linger? Here are a few ideas.
Include comfortable couches and recliners
Guests are only going to stay for so long in hard-backed chairs at a square table. If you want guests to linger longer, you should install some plush furniture. A couple of couches or recliners ensure guests have a place to kick back and relax while enjoying their coffee. Make sure you choose furniture in dark colors so that any coffee spills are less obvious. Also, set up small tables near each furnishing so guests have a place to set down their coffee.
Keep a shelf of books
Many people love to read while they sip their coffee. Some guests will bring their own books, but you can also encourage them to linger a while by providing a shelf of books for them to read. You can often find inexpensive used books for sale at local libraries that are selling off their extras. Check some garage sales, too. Keep the selection of books fresh by adding a few new ones to it every week.
Provide some snack-like options
Make sure guests have plenty of nibble on if they do decide to stay. Classic coffee shop snacks like muffins, donuts, and pastries are nice, but they won't appeal to everyone. Sell some fruit cups, yogurt, salads, and maybe even some simple sandwiches. Guests will linger longer if they don't feel they need to leave the coffee shop to get their next meal.
Offer free refills on drip coffee
Offering free refills on everything will eat into your profit margins pretty quickly. But offering free refills on just dripped coffee is pretty realistic and can encourage guests to stay longer. When you offer free refills, serve the coffee in smaller cups. This way, you won't have as much that goes to waste.
If your coffee shop's business model includes encouraging guests to linger, make sure you implement some of the ideas above. Guests will feel comfortable and welcomed.
Check out other coffee shops in your area for more ideas.Share