How to Start a small Coffee Shop Bakery? 11 Steps to Open a Coffee Shop

Many people ask me: How to Start a small Coffee Shop Bakery? Starting a small coffee shop bakery can be an exciting journey that allows you to turn your passion for baking into your own business. Whether you’re looking to start from scratch or convert an existing business, there are key elements of setting up and running a successful cafe/bakery.

In this blog post we will discuss the necessary steps that need to be taken in order to successfully launch your small coffee shop bakery. From developing a plan and forming the right team to designing the space, managing finances, setting up procedures and much more! Let’s get started on creating the perfect café/bakery experience for customers.

What does a coffee shop need?

A small coffee shop needs a few essential items to get started. This includes:

  1. Coffee machines and grinders
  2. Commercial refrigerator or cold storage area
  3. Coffee art supplies such as milk steamers, pitchers and espresso makers
  4. Storage shelves, racks and bins for inventory
  5. Pots, pans and utensils for food preparation
  6. Cash register or point of sale system
  7. Cups, mugs and other tableware
  8. Cleaning supplies and materials
  9. Seating and tables
  10. Awnings and umbrellas (if applicable)
  11. A good customer service attitude
  12. An attractive and inviting atmosphere
  13. Advertising materials and signage
  14. Menus with pricing information for customers to view
  15. A website or social media presence to promote the business
  16. Bookkeeping software to track finances and sales data
  17. Food safety guidelines and protocols
  18. Insurance to protect the business financially.

This is just a basic list of what a small coffee shop needs. Depending on the size and scope of your café/bakery, you may need more or fewer items. It’s important to consider your specific needs before making any purchases.

What are some things you should know before starting a coffee shop?

How to Start a small Coffee Shop Bakery

Before starting a coffee shop, it’s important to have an understanding of the industry. You should research your local market, understand pricing and be aware of competition in the area. Additionally, you need to consider factors such as location, menu selection, customer service and marketing strategy.

  • Develop Your Coffee Shop Concept
  • Determining Your Target Market
  • Determining Your Coffee Shop Costs
  • Estimating Your Financial Projections
  • Determine Your Coffee Shop Budget
  • Search for the Best Coffee Shop Location
  • Your Coffee Shop Property Lease
  • Navigating Your Health Department
  • Selecting Your Coffee Shop Equipment
  • How to Choose a Wholesale Coffee Roaster
  • Hiring and Training Your Barista Staff
  • Building a Memorable Coffee Brand
  • How to Be a Profitable Coffee Shop

Finally, focus on creating a great customer experience by providing quality products, excellent customer service and a cozy atmosphere.

How many workers do I hire in my coffee shop?

How to Start a small Coffee Shop Bakery

If you’re just starting out with a focus on coffee and baked goods from a local bakery, and plan to grow to a medium-sized shop, I recommend having five to seven employees depending on volume. Considering your hours of operation from 8am to 8pm, with baristas coming in a half hour early and staying a half hour late, you would need 91 hours of labor per week. I strongly advise having two baristas on each shift, bringing your total labor hours to 182 per week.

To distribute workload evenly among your staff, consider having three full-time and three part-time employees. The Lead Barista/trainer should come from the full-time staff, while you handle the back office/management tasks yourself or hire a seventh employee. For added flexibility, hire one or two employees for 12 hours a week to cover shifts or serve as backup staff.

How to Start a small Coffee Shop Bakery?

How to Start a small Coffee Shop Bakery

  1. Develop a Plan: Before you begin launching your small coffee shop bakery, it’s important to create and develop an extensive plan. This plan should include the business structure, budgeting, marketing plans, mission and vision statements as well as target customer profiles.
  2. Form Your Team: You will need to build a team to help you with the launch and running of your small coffee shop bakery. This may include consultants, employees, partners and other members who are instrumental in the success of your business.
  3. Design the Space: Create an inviting atmosphere that shows off the unique character of your cafe/bakery. Consider seating, kitchen equipment, counter space, display cases and other items needed to maximize the customer’s experience.
  4. Manage Finances: Make sure you create a budget and understand the financials of running a business. This includes accounting, inventory management and cost control.
  5. Set Procedures: Establish procedures for customers, employees and suppliers. This includes policies on customer service, payment and order processing as well as safety procedures for employees.
  6. Create an Online Presence: Lastly, create an online presence to promote your small coffee shop bakery and attract customers. This can include having a website with detailed descriptions of products, purchase capabilities and social media accounts such as Instagram or Facebook.

These are the key steps for launching and running a successful small coffee shop bakery. By following this guide, you can ensure that your business will have a great foundation to grow and thrive!

How much money does it take to open a small bakery?

How to Start a small Coffee Shop Bakery

The amount of money you need to open a small bakery will depend on the size and scope of your business. Generally, most bakeries will require a start-up cost between $10,000 – $50,000 which includes inventory, equipment, supplies and other necessary items. Additionally, it is always wise to set aside an additional 10-15% of the start-up cost to cover unexpected expenses.

What are some tips for running a successful small bakery?

  • Always prioritize quality: Quality is paramount when it comes to running a successful bakery. Make sure that all products produced and served in your café/bakery meet or exceed customer expectations.
  • Develop a Unique Selling Point: Find something that sets your small bakery apart from the competition and make sure to emphasize it. Whether it’s a signature item, unique flavor combinations or special events, creating a USP can help draw in customers.
  • Know Your Market: Understand the people who are likely to be your customers and tailor your products to meet their needs. Consider the demographics of the area as well as what’s popular in the marketplace.
  • Invest in Technology: Utilize technology to streamline processes and make life easier for both employees and customers. This could include online ordering, delivery services or a digital loyalty program.
  • Nurture Your Customer Base: Create relationships with your customers to ensure they keep coming back. This could include offering promotions, discounts or special events exclusive to loyal customers.

Benefits to Starting a Coffee Shop Bakery?

How to Start a small Coffee Shop Bakery

Starting a coffee shop bakery can be a rewarding experience. Not only is it an opportunity to bring your culinary dreams to life, but there are several other benefits as well. Here are just a few:

  • Flexibility and autonomy: Running a small cafe or bakery gives you the freedom to set your own hours and create a business that’s tailored to your vision and goals.
  • Low start-up costs: Depending on the type of products you plan to offer, starting a small cafe/bakery can be relatively affordable.
  • Building relationships: You have the opportunity to create meaningful connections with customers and build a loyal base of supporters.
  • Increased visibility: Coffee shops and bakeries are often located in highly visible areas, giving you a great opportunity to market your business.
  • Expanding menu options: With the right supplies and equipment, you can provide customers with an array of delicious food items that will keep them coming back for more!
  • Community support: Small businesses are often embraced by the local community and can be a great way to give back to the people around you.
  • Potential for growth: With hard work and dedication, your small business can grow into something much larger with more opportunities for success.
  • Personal fulfillment: Creating something from nothing is an incredible feeling, and running your own coffee shop bakery can provide you with a sense of accomplishment.
  • Access to loyalty programs: With a small business, you’ll be able to offer rewards and discounts that are exclusive to loyal customers.
  • Control over pricing: You’ll have the freedom to set prices for your products that make sense for your business and customers.

By starting a coffee shop bakery, you can enjoy all of these benefits and more! With careful planning and dedication, success is within reach.

Here are the 11 Steps to Open a Coffee Shop Bakery:

1. Envision the Business:

Develop a vision and business plan for the coffee shop bakery, including the type of food products you’ll offer, your target market, pricing structure, and operational procedures.

2. Choose a Location:
Find a suitable location that’s close to your target customers and has adequate parking and access.

3. Scout for Potential Locations as You Sample the Competition’s Offerings:
Visit other coffee shops and bakeries in the area to get an idea of what they offer and how their business is doing.

4. Write a Business Plan and Open a Business Bank Account:

Create a detailed business plan that outlines the goals and objectives of your business. Obtain financing if necessary, and open a business bank account for tracking expenses.

5. Pick a Specific Location For Your Shop:

Take into account the size of your shop, traffic patterns in the area, and any zoning regulations or requirements.

6. Research Necessary Licenses & Permits:

Contact your local zoning board to determine what licenses and permits are required for running a coffee shop bakery in the area.

7. Purchase Necessary Equipment & Supplies:

Invest in high quality equipment, supplies, and ingredients that will help you create great-tasting food items.

8. Hire Employees:

Hire well-qualified employees who are passionate about food and customer service. Provide ongoing training to ensure they can deliver exceptional service.

9. Determine whether owning your own business is for you:
Owning a coffee shop bakery requires dedication, hard work and attention to detail. Ask yourself if this is something you’re willing to commit to.

If so, you can start the process of planning your own small business today! With an effective plan in place and the right equipment and staff, success could be just around the corner.

10. Talk to other small business owners in the area:

Learning from the experiences of others who have gone through the process can be invaluable. Seek out advice and tips to make your venture a success.

11. Figure out your concept:

Your coffee shop bakery should have a well-defined concept that sets it apart from other businesses in the area. Outline what makes your shop unique so customers will be drawn to it.

Related article: 
How to Make Keurig Coffee Taste Better?


Q: Are there any legal requirements to opening a coffee shop bakery?

A: Yes, you must obtain the necessary licenses and permits from your local zoning board. You should also research health department regulations for running a food business.

Q: What type of products should I offer in my coffee shop bakery?

A: Offer a variety of fresh-baked goods, such as pastries, muffins, and cookies. You can also offer espresso drinks, specialty coffees, and teas.

Q: How do I promote my coffee shop bakery?

A: Develop a marketing plan to reach your target customers. Utilize social media platforms to promote your business and consider offering loyalty program rewar

Q: What type of financial investments are required to open a coffee shop bakery?

A: You’ll need to invest in high quality equipment, ingredients, and supplies. You may also need to obtain financing if you don’t have the capital on hand.

Q: How do I ensure customer satisfaction?

A: Hire experienced staff and provide ongoing training to ensure they can deliver exceptional service. Offer quality products that are made with fresh ingredients. Deliver excellent customer service at all times.

Now that you have a better understanding of the steps required to open a successful coffee shop bakery, you’re ready to get started! Just remember to remain dedicated and always focus on providing the highest quality products and customer service. With hard work and dedication, your dream of owning a small business can become a reality.

Q: What other considerations should I take into account when opening a coffee shop bakery?

A: Take into account the size of your shop, traffic patterns in the area, and any zoning regulations or requirements. Research health department regulations for running a food business, and consider instituting a loyalty program to reward customers for their repeat purchases. You should also invest in high quality equipment, supplies, and ingredients that will help you create great-tasting food items.

Q: How do I stay competitive in the coffee shop bakery business?

A: Stay up-to-date with trends and offer unique food items that customers won’t find anywhere else. Utilize social media platforms to promote your business and consider offering discounts or promotions on a regular basis. Invest in high quality equipment, ingredients, and supplies to ensure you’re creating the best possible product. Most importantly, make sure you hire experienced staff who are knowledgeable about coffee and baking.


If you have a passion for baking and coffee, as well as an entrepreneurial spirit, starting your own coffee shop bakery is both a rewarding and practical venture. While anyone can open a small business, it takes hard work to create a bakery that is successful and profitable. By realistically assessing the costs of getting started, creating menus with quality ingredients, drawing in customers through effective marketing strategies, and staying engaged with their local communities, entrepreneurs can give their businesses the best chance of succeeding.

With the ever growing demand for gourmet pastries and specialty coffees, now is the perfect time to begin your journey to becoming an independent business owner and finding success in this increasingly popular industry. So what are you waiting for? Let today be the start of something great!


I’m Kara Chavez, and I love coffee. I like to create some of the best coffees around – espressos, lattes, macchiatos – you name it. I strive for perfection in my coffee-making skills, and I take great pride in providing a delicious cup of joe to my customers.

I’ve been working in the coffee industry for years now, and I know everything there is to know about making a perfect cup of coffee. My passion for coffee shines through in every cup that I make, and I hope that you’ll stop by soon so that I can share my love of coffee with you!

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