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Good coffee pays for itself twice over!

... or “Why you simply can’t afford to serve bad coffee.”

Coffee is one of the main revenue drivers of the Horeca sector and bakeries. Despite this, however, it’s rarely given the attention it deserves. This is strange when you consider the contribution margins and revenues this popular pick-me-up provides.

What could be the reason for this widespread disregard for coffee and its quality in the cup? First of all, it’s far too easy to put coffee and so-called “coffee specialties” on the menu. Anyone can – one way or the other. Modern technology and easy finance have lowered the entry barriers to the point where they hardly exist. Everyone wants to join in and a lack of knowledge never stopped anyone –seems to be the motto many live by.

Voting with their feet

Another reason is the unwillingness to complain. People mostly suffer in silence – usually no more than once – and answer the waiter’s indifferent “Everything to your satisfaction?” with an equally noncommittal “Yes, thank you.” – because he couldn't possibly have been referring to the coffee. After that, they simply don't order coffee there any more, or choose a different establishment next time.

So how can business owners be sure that the quality of their coffee is good, without being trained experts themselves? Well, the assumption that only professionals can determine good quality is itself a dangerous fallacy and shouldn't absolve owners from taking part in professional coffee training themselves. After all, customers are becoming more knowledgeable about coffee every day – meaning that the need to improve coffee quality is constantly growing.

Time to taste

Those who put themselves in the guest’s shoes quickly learn about the quality of their own coffee. By taking the time to actually taste the beverages on offer, they can quickly determine whether these are bitter, watery, too hot or too cold. The knowledge gained in training courses can then help them find the source of the problem – and its solution – faster and improve the coffee served with the means already available.

It’s also often worth having a think about the coffee beverages on offer, perhaps adding seasonal specialties or considering different cup sizes. Size isn’t always everything. The cappuccino offered in Italy, for example, is usually smaller than its German counterpart and as a result often tastes much better (due to the higher coffee to milk ratio).

Good coffee for loyal customers

Coffee or coffee beverages which taste better than the average are recognized and rewarded by customers in the form of additional sales. Repeat orders are much more common for coffee than for food. It’s therefore definitely worth paying special attention to coffee if you want loyal and regular guests – and the possibility to not only serve them coffee. In other words, good coffee pays for itself more than twice over!

There’s plenty of help available. And those who can't manage alone and refuse help from outside – simply can’t be helped. So, time to improve the quality of your own coffee!