How to Create a Coffee Shop Business Plan
Are you thinking of opening a coffee shop? As with starting any business the first step is to do your background market research and write a business plan to see if your idea is feasible. The simple coffee shop business plan example presented here can be used to help you get your own coffee shop business off the ground.
The example follows the standard business plan layout, consisting of a single document divided into several sections, including a description of the organization, the market research, competitive analysis, sales strategies, capital, and labor requirements and financial data.
How Long Should the Plan Be?
Business plans can be anywhere from a few pages to hundreds of pages long for large businesses. For a relatively small business like a coffee shop, it is best to keep the plan as brief and succinct as possible (30 pages or less), especially if you intend to submit it to bankers or investors for debt or equity financing. Generally, potential money-lenders or investors don't want to spend the time reading a long, heavily detailed business plan — they are looking for solid research and analysis in a concise form.
To give your plan more visual appeal include photos, designs or site plans of the prospective business premises as well as charts and graphs of financial information such as revenue projections, etc.
How to Use the Template
The enclosed sample template is broken into sections as described in the table of contents. Each section of the template can be copied into a Word, Excel or similar office document by selecting the text and using copy/paste (using Windows, outline the text to be selected with the mouse, and hit CTRL-C to copy and CTRL-V to paste).
Simple Business Plan for Java Jake's Coffee House
Enter your business information starting with the legal name. If you already scouted a likely location and/or have a website in place you can include the addresses. If you have a business logo you can add it at the top or bottom of the title page.
Java Jake's Coffee House
October 15, 2017
2303 Stewart St.
If addressing to a company or individual include:
"Company or Financial Institution"
Table of Contents:
Market Analysis and the Competition...
Sales & Marketing Plan.........................
Ownership and Management Plan........
Appendices and Exhibits......................
Section 1: Executive Summary
The executive summary goes near the beginning of the plan but is written last. It should provide a short, concise and optimistic overview of your business that captures the reader's attention and gives them an interest in learning more about it. The executive summary should be no more than two pages long, with brief summaries of other sections of the plan.
Java Jake's Coffee House will be the go-to place for coffee lovers. We plan on serving the highest quality coffee and snacks in a trendy, comfortable atmosphere. Our convenient location and excellent customer service should build a steady repeat customer base.
Owners Jack Valdez and partner Juanita Sanchez each have over a decade in the food service industry, including management experience.
Our main products will be the higher margin gourmet coffee products such as espressos, cappuccinos, lattés, and a variety of snacks, including healthy alternatives.
Strategically located within easy walking distance from the technical school, nursing colleges and a variety of office complexes, we intend to cater to students and young office workers by providing plenty of seating space and superior customer service with a trendy vibe.
In the immediate area our competition consists mainly of fast food vendors such as McDonald's and Dunkin Donuts. We plan on capturing the upper end of the local coffee market by serving gourmet, non-machine made coffee products at reasonable prices. Along with our superior atmosphere and great customer service, we intend to target the sophisticated coffee consumer.
The location we have selected has 2,000 square feet of space, room for an outdoor patio and requires a minimum of renovations. The space has been vacant for several months and the owner is motivated and has offered a four year lease with a fifth year free.
We expect sales revenue to grow from $200,000 in the first year of operations to $250,000 by the end of the third year. To minimize operating expenses both of the principals will be onsite on a full time basis to reduce staffing costs, supervise and maintain quality control. We expect net profits to grow from $50,000 to $100,000 by year three. ***A bar chart can be added here***
$200,000 in startup funding is required for lease costs, renovations, equipment and furniture. The principals have $100,000 in cash and will obtain the rest from commercial lenders.
Section 2: Business/Industry Overview
This section is an overview of the coffee industry, the local market, and what makes your business unique.
The Coffee Industry
According to recent U.S. Census data, the millennials have overtaken the baby boomers as America's largest living generation. Millennials are more social and mobile than previous generations and prefer to have coffee with friends in trendy, public locations, increasing the popularity of high-end coffee shops. U.S. statistics indicate that:
Specialty coffee sales are increasing by 20 percent per year
Americans consume over 400 million cups of coffee per day
Retail sales of coffee exceed $5 billion per year
Our Position in the Industry
East Clovervale is an affluent area with a high density of students and young professionals, an ideal market for a coffee shop such as Java Jake's Coffee House. People in this area can afford to spend money on specialty coffees and snacks and are willing to do so.
Our market research has shown that seven out of 10 people polled in East Clovervale consume at least three cups of specialty coffee per week.
While there are currently two other coffee shops within the immediate area, neither offer patio seating or plenty of available parking. One does not offer free wifi.
What Makes Java Jake's Coffee House Unique
Java Jake's Coffee House marketing strategy is to cater to the the young and "young at heart" with top quality products, great service, and plenty of seating indoors and out. We aim to be the destination place to meet with friends, relax, and enjoy a great cup of coffee. Ultra-fast wifi will enable students and business people to readily communicate and work on school or business activities.
Section 3: Market Analysis and the Competition
In this section of the coffee shop business plan, you need to demonstrate that you have thoroughly analyzed the target market and that there is enough demand for your products to make your coffee business viable. The competitive analysis includes an assessment of the competition and how your coffee business will compete in the sector. The Target Market description and Competitive Analysis portions can be two separate sections in the plan or combined as shown below:
Given the proximity to schools and office complexes, our primary target market will be students and professional business people. Both groups are heavy consumers of coffee, tea, and snacks.
Based on our customer surveys, there is a strong demand for a high-end coffee shop in a central location that serves great coffee and has both outdoor seating and available parking. The three most common complaints about the existing competition in the area are:
Inconsistent product: Discerning customers are reluctant to become regular patrons of a coffee shop that cannot consistently serve a high-quality product.
Lack of patio seating: Many people prefer to consume their food and beverages outdoors on a sunny day.
Not enough nearby parking: The lack of parking makes it difficult to attract vehicle commuters.
The local customer base consists of approximately:
3,000 students from the two post-secondary schools
200 school staff
1,000 business people and office workers
Both schools have solid attendance and are expanding their student population. The local business market is strong and has been relatively unaffected by previous economic downturns.
Java Jake's Coffee House versus the Competition: We expect our revenues to grow strongly as we build our customer base:
Coffee to Go
Java Jake's Coffee (Year 1)
Est. Annual Revenue
Section 4: Sales and Marketing Plan
Our Product Offerings
The existing competition uses lower grade beans, inexpensive equipment, and does not properly train staff — resulting in inconsistent product quality and dissatisfied customers.
At Java Jake's we are passionate about coffee and intend to focus on consistently serving the highest quality product by:
Sourcing premium beans and snacks and maintaining freshness at all times.
Using a top of the line espresso machine and related equipment.
Properly training our staff — Our baristas will be sent away for proper training.
By focusing on quality, consistency, and great customer service we will build a steady repeat customer base.
We intend to mainly focus on specialty coffees including espresso, cappuccinos, mochas, etc. as the profit margins are much higher than regular coffee. To command a higher price for regular coffee we will not use drip machines. Instead, each cup will be single served using a Bodum, so that every cup is up-to-the-minute fresh and delicious.
Our pricing will be competitive with the higher end of the market. We believe that customers will be happy to pay top prices for a great cup of coffee.
We will be offering counter service in a professionally designed, cozy, inviting interior space. Interior seating will be a mix of smaller individual tables for intimacy and longer, bench style ones for larger groups. Exterior seating will consist of weatherproof tables and chairs with available sunshade umbrellas. We intend to be open from 7:30 AM to 9:00 PM weekdays, and 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM weekends.
In addition to cash, credit, and debit payment we will also be accepting Apple Pay for purchases.
Advertising and Promotion
To minimize costs and connect with our customer demographic, most of our advertising will be of the digital variety. We intend to aggressively promote our products using the following methods:
Posters on the local campus billboards
Our state of the art website
Social media: Daily specials will be announced on Facebook and Twitter
Statistics demonstrate that loyalty cards are highly effective — Java Jake's will use a custom-designed rewards card to promote repeat business.
Section 5: Ownership and Management Plan
This section describes the legal structure, ownership, and (if applicable) the management and staffing requirements of your business.
Java Jake's Coffee House is a private corporation registered in the state of Texas. The business is currently 100 percent owned by Jack Valdez and Juanita Sanchez:
Jack Valdez: 60 Class A Shares
Juanita Sanchez: 40 Class A Shares
**Describe other classes of shares owned by other individuals or any other special arrangements between owners regarding the shares***
Owners Jack and Juanita will co-manage the business (at least one will be present at all times during opening hours). Both owners have previous food service management experience and are trained experienced baristas.
External Resources and Services
Melford's Design Services will be contracted for the interior design of the premises.
Jackson and Jackson will provide accounting services for the business.
Jody's Catering will supply the baked goods.
**Add any other external resources you intend to use, such as Food Services, Lawyers, construction contractors, bookkeepers, etc.
Section 6: Operating Plan
The operating plan outlines the physical requirements of your business, such as retail space, equipment, inventory and supply needs, labor, etc. For a business such as a coffee shop that requires custom facilities, supply chains, specialized equipment, and multiple employees, the operating plan needs detail.
The premises we have chosen are at 2303 Stewart St. The space features:
2,000 square feet of indoor space in a modern, well-maintained building in an excellent location
Approximately 500 square feet of outdoor patio space, with lockup racks for bicycles
Existing zoning for restaurant usage
A four-year lease at $3,500/month with a fifth year free
The building owner is responsible for trash collection, recycling, pest control, and security
Utilities (water, electricity, gas, internet, phone) are estimated to be $800 per month
The previous tenant was a restaurant and there are existing kitchen, counter and sufficient washroom facilities already in place. The previous tenant has offered to sell used kitchen equipment at heavily discounted prices.
Two full-time and four to six part-time baristas will be hired at industry standard wages. Baristas will be trained at a regional barista training academy. The two full-time employees are previous employees of the owners. The part-time employees will be sourced from the local post-secondary institutions.
Owners and staff will share all regular duties, including taking orders, making coffee/tea, clearing tables, restocking, dishwashing, maintaining washroom facilities, etc.
To increase employee loyalty a bonus/profit sharing system will be put in place.
The following equipment will be purchased:
Commercial grade La Marzocco Espresso machine ($25,000)
Espresso grinder ($1,500)
We are currently negotiating the purchase of used commercial equipment from the previous tenant, including:
Glass door fridge ($1,000)
Misc. shelving, storage bins, etc. ($500)
Maintenance contracts for the equipment will be negotiated with local vendors.
We have negotiated an agreement with Murphy's Coffee Wholesalers to supply premium gourmet Columbian coffee/espresso beans with two-day shipping. Milk, juices, soft drinks, fruit, etc. will be sourced from the local Costco.
Muffins, scones, cookies, yogurt fruit cups, and sandwiches will be supplied on a daily basis by Jody's Catering.
Section 7: Financial Plan
The financial plan section is the most important section of the business plan, especially if you need debt financing or wish to attract investors. The financial plan has to demonstrate that your business will grow and be profitable. To do this you will need to create projected income statements, cash flow statements, and balance sheets. For a new business, these are forecasts, and a good rule of thumb is to underestimate revenues and overestimate expenses.
Include your three financial statements:
The Income Statement shows your projected Revenues, Expenses and Profit. Do this on a monthly basis for at least the first year for a startup business.
Cash Flow Projections
The Cash Flow projection shows your monthly anticipated cash revenues and disbursements for expenses. It is important for demonstrating that you can manage your cash flow and will be a good credit risk.
The Balance Sheet is a snapshot summary of the assets, liabilities, and equity of your business at a particular point in time — for a startup, this would be on the day the business opens. Note that a new business will have no accounts receivable entries on the balance sheet. Note also that the Balance Sheet is much simpler for unincorporated businesses without employees — income tax, pensions, medical, etc. are only applicable to incorporated businesses, as are Earnings/Retained Earnings.
Including a breakeven analysis will demonstrate to financiers or investors what level of sales you need to achieve to make a profit.
Section 8: Appendices and Exhibits
The appendices and exhibits section contains any detailed information needed to support other sections of the plan.
Possible Appendix/Exhibit Items
Credit histories for the business owners
Detailed market research and analysis of competitors
Resumés of the owners and key employees
Information about your industry
Information about your products/services
Copies of mortgage documents, equipment leases, etc. (or quotes on these)
Marketing brochures and other materials
References from business colleagues
Links to your business website.
Any other supporting material that may impress potential lenders or investors if you are looking for financing.