Cold brew coffee

Coffee shops and cafes are growing in popularity, and this isn’t just a trend in the United States. Globally, coffee consumption is increasing. An article from Nation’s Restaurant News took a look at this evolution, saying, “almost every country from Algeria to Zimbabwe has seen coffee consumption rise over the last few years. There are now over 2.25 billion cups of coffee consumed in the world every day.”

With all the competition in the cafe industry, a variety of coffee shop trends and effective restaurant marketing tactics have been developed by cafes that are standing out in local markets. Let’s take a look at those trends now, to understand how you might improve your own cafe.

Smiling waiter serving a coffee to a customer at the coffee shop

Offer quick solutions to curing hunger.

Cafes that thrive often provide healthier options than other fast-food restaurants, especially for breakfast. The Plant Cafe Organic in San Francisco has healthy breakfast options like the Sambazon Bowl, made with blended acai berries, blues, strawberries, and mixed with apple or orange juice. It is then topped with seasonal fruit and granola.

  • Quick tip: No matter what kind of restaurant you run, a to-go restaurant menu with fresh, healthy alternatives to muffins and
    breakfast sandwiches are appreciated.

Offer friendly, relaxed, and comfortable ambiences.

Cafes defy the barriers of traditional demographics. White collar, blue collar, polkadotted collar and no-collar consumers go to cafes. Decor ranges from plush couches to aluminum metal chairs. Baristas range from coffee snobs to tea slingers. Each cafe has its own personality.

  • Quick tip: Look at your online reviews to determine what your customers love most about you, and capitalize on that. Your guests are offering you tips and ideas for free, and that’s better advice than any marketing consultant can offer you.

“There are now over 2.25 billion cups of coffee consumed in the world every day.” 

Stand out.

Due to their popularity, the hours of operation have evolved for cafes — Top coffee bars stay open later. Cafes are complementing their menus with beer and wine options; even Starbucks has a liquor license in some US locations. Vittoria Caffe in Boston not only stays open to at least midnight every night, but the cafe also sells signature martinis and specialty coffee drinks with alcohol. Their Black & Gold drink includes coffee, triple sec, Amaretto, Baily’s Irish Cream, hazelnut liqueur, and a dash of cinnamon Schnapps. New Harvest Coffee Roasters in Providence just opened New Harvest Coffee & Spirits. The easiest way to track your Return on Investment for these new initiatives is with a cafe POS system.

  • Quick tip: Decide what makes your cafe stand out. Is it a liquor license? Comfortable couches? Melt! in San Francisco offers open mic nights on Monday, singer-songwriter nights on Fridays, live jazz on Saturdays, and classical guitar on Sundays. What are you doing to bring customers in?

Thinking about adding a coffee program to your restaurant? Well, get to know your menu first. Learn more about updating any restaurant menu with this guide. 

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Insights from and on the restaurant industry. Curated by the content team at Upserve.