If the competition between outdoor cafes is great, you are probably trying so hard to find a way to stand out and grab the attention of passers by. The solutions to this may be easier than you think.
There are certain elements a cafe cannot do without, such as the market umbrellas and the barriers. The first ensure protection from the sun, rain and dust, while the latter help enclose the space and isolate it. These are also places where sponsors, collaborators or the cafe itself place their logo. You may want to combine this with a graphic or a different text – a message to those who come by. Alternate this with the logo and your cafe can become really bold and compelling.
As for the market umbrellas, you can make these stand out through their color. Match them with the barriers that always work. Or, you may opt for a color that’s different from anything else used on that street. Your prospective clients must feel attracted to your cafe and they should feel like it’s “the chosen spot” for their relaxation or refueling moments.
There are other design elements too that can be changed. The idea is to have a look around and see how you can be different from the competition. Don’t copy what they’re doing unless it’s the last resort. For example, if the other has bistro-like tables and chairs, you may opt for couches and loveseats. The heightened degree of comfort will attract a new range of clients. You’ll be creating a brand and you’ll be in a league of your own.
Don’t forget to customize the cafe further. You should find a special theme for it, which will also set it apart from the rest. Have this reflected in the style of the furniture or through various decorative objects. Perhaps you can match this also with the products you are providing. This already means a concept, like experts would say. In addition, you should definitely consider the lifestyle of those you expect to visit your cafe or maybe that which is inspired by the entire street you’re on.
Work with the design and the flow patterns. Most street cafes don’t have much to work with so are rather limited. This is why these tend to have similar looks. However, when your cafe occupies a different space, you can get more creative with it. Try different layout and move the furniture around, as well as the seating. Don’t make it complicated for your customers to move around, think in terms of an easy flow. Also, this will help your staff be efficient.
In addition, try to get every table to have a nice view. This will help fill in all the seats at all times.