My best friend and I (our babies are 10 wks apart) are CONSTANTLY looking for somewhere to take our toddlers where we can relax and our LO's won't get bored. I think this is a great idea! I don't know if this would work or not, I'm no business woman.. but I know people without kids will avoid places full of them... and quite often a lot of mums won't spend the kind of money you need them to spend in a place like a coffee shop.., so how about having a play area, and a cafe' with cheaper drinks than regular coffee places, but charging an entry fee? Like at a play center? Except primarily for mums instead of for the kids... so like a regular coffee shop, but where the kids can be literally let loose! You could serve meals too, again, cheaper than regular restaurant prices or at least amongst the cheapest.
I know my friend and I would CERTAINLY go to something like this, without a doubt! Good luck
If your aiming it to be a `mums & tots` cafe then I think its a brilliant idea and would be very popular imo. However if your juggling regularly trade and mums with tots then that could get a little tricky.
My experience from `most` normal coffee shops I`ve visited since becoming a mummy ..... NOT VERY WELCOMING TO MUMMY WITH BABIES/TOTS AND CERTAINLY NOT PUSHCHAIR FRIENDLY! Almost as if `how dare you come here` in attitude from other customers and often the owners too. Now if this was a place where you know you would be welcome to bring your baby along, maybe with a little soft play area in the corner and you could have a coffee and bun/lunch without been frowned upon then your onto a winner If your name reflects this then if pensioners and businessmen and the like choose to frequent they know they will be do so with Mummys, babies and tots for company
My partner and I were looking into starting one up ourselves about a year ago. We got our costings and business plan all up to scratch and I even did some free courses with business link.
To say how much a coffee shop would make is difficult as it is COMPLETELY dependant on the area in which you want to open it. You need to go out there and do some market research. Go visit local places... how much do they sell coffee for? How many customers are in there at that time? Then look at the rent such shops would charge. You would need an A3 let. These can be quite hard to come by (at least down south) and changing planning permission can be challenging.
All the figures we came up with are for our particular area. These were verified by a business link lecturer and we estimated turning a net profit of £6,000 in the first year (based on a shop let we had in mind)... this was with 2 other full time staff members and me taking a wage of £20,000.
I am still looking to do this... it is just there is very little funding out there and the banks won't even look at you unless you already have a lot of the investment money up front. I think we calculated a need of about £40,000 in set up costs.
I think it is an amazing idea and would love to own one. I want a coffee shop that is adult in feel, but has a lot of facilities for babies and small children. I am not talking soft play but book share area. Bouncy chairs, high chairs enclosed play area with various toys. Somewhere where a mum can come and be in adult company but feel ok about letting their little terror have a play without upsetting other diners.
I also wanted a lot of emphasis on healthier home cooked meals like home made shepherds pie and soups with no added salt so young children can eat too.
I remember that when I was a new mummy with a 6 week old I found myself lost when there were no baby groups on. My friends and I had to meet in wetherspoons or mcdonalds (as none of us wanted the others to see the state of our houses). The facilities here were pretty dismal. Who wants to change their LO in a yucky disabled toilet that smells of urine? the food was also really unhealthy.
If you want any more advice I can try to help you... just message me.
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