Making Your Restaurant Stand Out

Tips for Setting Up a Coffee Shop Near a College

by Aiden Carpenter

If you're an entrepreneur who has had past successes in the restaurant industry, you might be ready to branch out into opening a coffee shop. Upon looking at location opportunities around your city, you might find a spot near a college that you deem to be suitable. Opening a coffee shop near a college presents you with a good opportunity for making money, given that many college students are short on sleep and rely on coffee to be alert for their classes each morning. In order for your business to be popular and successful, however, you'll want to keep these tips in mind.

Competitive Pricing

Competitive pricing is important for most businesses but especially relevant for a coffee shop that is being set up near a college campus. College students have limited funds, and while some of them might enjoy spending their money on designer coffee, the majority of them want a good-tasting beverage without paying a lot for it. You'll want to do some careful market research to see what other coffee shops in the area charge, and then come up with a cost per cup that is competitive.

Student Discounts

You might price your coffee competitively with the other shops that are located around the college, but it's ideal if you can go a step further to make college students want to visit your location. One option is to offer student discounts. In other words, every patron who shows a current student identification card while placing his or her order can get a small discount—for example, perhaps 10 percent off the order. On a small order, this discount may be well under $1, but it will add up for a student who visits the shop daily.

Campus Involvement

You can raise the profile of your coffee shop by getting involved in different functions on the college campus. For example, think about placing a weekly ad in the college newspaper—perhaps in the form of a coupon that gives a discount to each person who shows it while placing an order. You may also want to inquire about catering certain events at the college, or perhaps advertising at a sporting event. The more steps that you can take of this nature, the more that you'll elevate the profile of your coffee shop, which can keep you busy serving not only students from the college but also staff and faculty, too.

Consider checking out other coffee shops in the meantime, both for research purposes and just to try other kinds of coffee.