Coffee Shop Business Plan

Business Plan Articles

If you are starting a coffee shop, it is likely that you will require a business plan at some point. The experts at Pro Business Plans have worked with many coffee shops to create business plans for investment and strategy. This article provides information about what is generally included in a coffee shop business plan and how it is structured.

coffee shop business plan

Coffee Shop Business Plan

There are many things to consider when starting a coffee shop that will help you to gain positioning and remain profitable as you scale. For one, selecting an optimal location will serve as one of the most distinguishing factors for your coffee shop. A coffee shop in a high traffic area, such as a shopping mall, may be entirely different than one in a residential area. Both may be equally profitable, but each coffee shop will have a different marketing plan and financial projections. Similarly, the capacity and atmosphere of the café will influence market positioning and long-term profitability and must be communicated to prospective investors.

Business Model

The business model for a coffee shop is not always universal. Some coffee shops sell a variety of food, beverage, and merchandise items aside from coffee. At some coffee shops, the atmosphere is more important than the actual beverages. The cost of a drink may be higher in order to subsidize the cost of customers staying in the store and using utilities. Other business models may focus on the high turnover of customers at a more competitive cost, which demands an entirely different approach to operations and quality standards.

market positioning


The location of a coffee shop is perhaps one of the largest determinants of success. For instance, take a coffee shop that is located in Times Square of New York City, compared to one located off the highway of a major commuter highway. As you will discover during your search for a good property, there are many more factors at play than simply finding the highest traffic location available. In some cases, rent may be so high that you will require six times the customer base to make the same amount of profit, had you been located in a smaller area with much less overhead expenses..

team management


TThe menu of a coffee shop is often one of the most defining factors that it has and sets the tone for the demographics that come in. For instance, a coffee shop that only offers basic drink options at a high volume and low price compared to a premium one with many signature drinks at high prices. Some coffee shops have even gone so far as designing their own menus using artistic professionals.

Marketing Plan

Forming a marketing strategy for a new coffee shop typically has two parts, the first of which is management of the initial company’s launch. The coffee shop must alert the local demographic that it has entered the market. Otherwise, it may take several months before the market becomes aware of its presence, especially if it is not located in an area with high visibility and foot traffic. This typically includes a combination of public relations and initial grand opening discounts.

Some coffee shops have received recognition for establishing a unique culture that they then spin to acquire media attention. Once the coffee shop has opened, the ongoing market strategy will partially depend upon your business model. Customer loyalty may be the focus on a neighborhood coffee shop dependent upon a regular customer base, but a tourism driven one may be more interested in growing a reputation to make it a major tourism spot.

trade shows

Initial Launch

The initial launch of a coffee shop typically takes place over the first three to four weeks and consists of aggressive public relations, Startup promotions, and reputation management. You want to ensure that everyone within the area learns about your new coffee shop and has a positive impression of it from the very beginning. Unless you are targeting the tourist market or have a constantly changing customer base, this period may form the basis of your profitability.

business development

Business Development

Once you have surpassed the initial market entry phase, it is a matter of driving new customers in an organized manner. The growth strategy of many coffee shops is mainly focused on online visibility and digital reputation management . One of the most important qualities of a coffee shop business plan is to establish strong customer loyalty. Because of the brick and mortar nature of the company, customer loyalty is essential. The most effective way to build this is to establish a personal or emotional connection with your customer base in a way that builds a sustainable bond.

Financial Projections

The financial projections for a coffee shop business plan are generally requested by banks and investors for a three to five-year period. The projections should include the income statement, cash flow forecast, and balance sheet like the samples that we have completed in the past. Some investors may also want to see more detailed financial modeling, such as a break-even and sensitivity analysis that will help them to gauge the risk level of your company.

The most effective way to prepare the model for this is to base it on the historical operating performance of the business. If you are starting from scratch, you may analyze the financial performance of similar coffee shops in order to form the basis for assumptions.

revenue projections

Forming Projections

Every set of financial projections must be based on reliable research. This means doing comparable analysis on similar coffee shops and understanding the market demand potential in your area using US Census . The actual model made may require technical skills in order to properly formulate the cash flow forecasts and create a fully operational model. There are some financial modeling templates available that may be able to assist you during the process, but it’s always advisable to use an expert.

budget forecasts

Custom Modeling

Some investors may also request additional information such as a break-even analysis or scenario forecast . Such modeling can enter the realm of corporate financial analysis, but there are several resources to assist you in this process. If properly done, it can assist you to more effectively manage risk and strategically make decisions.

What is Included in Our Custom Coffee Shop Business Plan?

  • Marketing Plan
  • SWOT Analysis
  • Competitive Analysis
  • Profitability Analysis
  • Personnel Plan
  • Organizational Chart
  • Company Valuation
  • Executive Summary
  • Company Description
  • Keys to Success
  • Three Year Objectives
  • Product or Service Description
  • Market Research
  • Fundraising Support
  • 12 Month & 3 Year Profit & Loss
  • 3 Year Balance Sheet
  • 12 Month & 3 Year Sales Forecast
  • 12 Month & 3 Year Cash Flows
  • Break-Even Analysis
  • Financial Ratio Analysis
  • Management Team

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