ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Choosing the Best Coffee Franchise

Updated on July 29, 2014
KeithTax profile image

Keith Schroeder writes The Wealthy Accountant blog with 30 years experience in the tax field. He is the tax adviser of Mr. Money Mustache an

Gourmet Coffee Franchise Alternative

The fastest way to build a successful coffee shop is with a franchise. The love of coffee is only the starting point in this business. The capital required to start and maintain a coffee franchise is large. A small shop will start at $40,000-$50,000, while most franchises require over $100,000 of capital to begin.

The large investment is required to build a profitable coffee franchise from day one. Using a proven successful business model offers the best opportunity to enjoy the ownership of your own coffee shop.

Several considerations are necessary before investing. In this article I will outline some of the most important points when considering a coffee franchise. I will not focus on which franchise is better or worse because several factor make certain franchises better in one location over another.



The investment needs to be your first consideration. You will need either liquid funds to cover the purchase of the franchise, loans, or partners. As stated above, most coffee franchises run $100,000 and more; some, like Seattle’s Best Coffee, run $250,000.

Even if you have liquid funds for the purchase, you may still want a bank lending facility or partners. Cost over-runs, overhead, and operating expenses in the early days of the business will strain the finances unless adequately planned for.

Another reason to consider a partner is business experience. If you have never run a business before, the task can be daunting. A current or previous business owner will be familiar and comfortable with hiring employees and the taxes that involves. A business is a great way to make a living as long as you manage the company in a way that allows you peace of mind.


After you secure funding and/or partners, it is time to research a location. A coffee house has an easier time with location than many other types of businesses. This does not mean you can take short-cuts on location. Most management decisions are easy to change; once the location is set, it is set. Moving is possible with large expense only.

Towns of every size have ample opportunities for profit with a coffee franchise. I live near a town of 200 people with a very successful coffee house. The coffee is great, as well as, the soups, sandwiches, and deserts. The place is addicting.

Crowded malls have lots of foot traffic, but may not be the ideal place to grow a coffee shop. The crowded and rushed atmosphere lends to cheap coffee offered on the run. Also, there is too much competition. You lose the ability to serve people a cup of coffee on the way to work.

A coffee shop can locate in a quiet neighborhood where rents are lower. It is best to pick a quiet spot. People wanting to stop in for a quick cup of Joe are as satisfied as the crowd that wants to chat the morning away. It is all about atmosphere with a coffee franchise.

Your shop should be ideally located where local neighbors can easily stop in to socialize. This crowd is more likely to buy more than coffee. Soups, sandwiches, and deserts are a large source of profits, too.


Going to a coffee shop is an experience. You can sell coffee only or other items as well. Customers will return frequently when they fall in love with the atmosphere of your coffeehouse.

Near my employment is a small coffeehouse in an old cinderblock building with all the charm of an historic building. Each night they offer either: poetry reading, book reading, singing, and open mic. The crowd is so large they turn people away every evening. And this is for a coffeehouse, where business is most brisk in the morning.

The atmosphere should reflect your personality. People will come to see you. This is not a transaction between shop owner and customer; this is a friend bringing me a drink. And I pay for the drink.

When choosing a coffee franchise, you need to consider the atmosphere the franchise is famous for. Your personality must match with the franchise style. A coffeehouse can be a morning business or a highly profitable business that packs the house with evening entertainment provided by the customers themselves. Nothing speaks profit like a packed room of customers laughing and having a good time.


As enjoyable as owning a coffee franchise can be, there are risks, as with any business. You must be prepared to hire, and fire if necessary, employees. There are bookkeeping, tax, and accounting matters that require daily attention. Costs must be contained and profit assured to continue as a viable organization.

It should go without saying, you must love coffee, the people that frequent coffeehouses, and the long hours required to run a profitable business. You can have fun and enjoy the process, but never forget you are running a business that has obligations to customers, employees, vendors, and you, the owner.

You are in business first to make a profit. Without profit there is no business and everything else does not matter. You build a profitable business by picking the right coffee franchise, a good location, providing the proper atmosphere, and assessing risks.

Your dream of being a coffee franchise owner can come true with a little planning and research. Most of all, remember to have fun.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)