I'm often asked what are the most important things to get right when starting or running a cafe. I thought long and hard about this - here are my top 5 tips for cafe success.
1. Be different - there are too many, bland run of the mill "bacon and egg" joints out there. Leap ahead of your competition by being different - have a theme that runs through your business - from your presentation, to your staff, to your menu.
2. Be professional - teach your staff properly, clean everything from head to toe, spend money on your presentation - website, menus, appearance. If you want to be respected and loved by your customers, give them the best you can afford. Would you rather be a Mac or a PC?
3. Be consistent. Nothing frustrates customers quite like inconsistency. Develop procedures that detail every aspect of your business so that staff know how they should be performing at all times (especially when you aren't there).
4. Think Outside-in. Put yourself in the customers shoes - how can you make their experience of your cafe easier and more enjoyable.
5. Never stop Marketing. Gone are the days when customers will beat a path to your door - you must get out there and battle for every customer. Get online - use the web, use social media - all it will cost you is time.