Every business in every industry is having to adapt and pivot the way they operate amidst COVID-19. The coffee shop and bar industry is having to be more creative than most, with shelter-in-place mandates requiring operators to completely shift to a take-out only option and consumers limiting their social exposure as much as possible. But these changes in social behavior aren’t completely new for the Gen Z and Millennial generations. According to Datassential, the younger generations may be more likely to adapt to the “social distancing” way of doing things since they are already used to operating at the touch of a button. They are going to be the most open to local services that will help them maintain their dining-out habits in a safe and convenient way. Datassential goes on to say that “As restaurants innovate with social-distancing-inspired limited-time-offers, Gen Z and Millennials will be low-hanging fruit.” So how can cafes shift their offerings to capture this “low hanging fruit”?  

Below are 5 ideas for new streams of revenue that could help your café capture consumers’ attention:

1. Selling Groceries 

One of the latest tactics from coffee shops and restaurants is to sell groceries along with their carry-out offerings. The majority of Americans express interest in the grocery options, with Gen Z and Millennial consumers showing the highest interest. Breads/bakery items, fresh produce, and dairy items are all highly desired among consumers.*

2. D.I.Y. Kits

“Do-It-Yourself Kits” are another creative way coffee shops can fulfill consumer needs. Cafes can put together bundles that include a recipe card and all the necessary ingredients for your customer to make their favorite beverage at home. This option is especially helpful for households with kids or Millennials who want to limit their exposure to the others as much as possible.

Some of these kits could include:

  • Brew it Yourself Kit:
    • A bag of your coffee
    • A bottle of Torani Syrup
    • Milk/milk alternative
    • A recipe card
  • Energy Kit:
    • A pack of energy drinks
    • A bottle of Torani Syrup
    • A recipe card
  • Iced Tea Kit
    • Tea bags
    • A bottle of Torani Syrup
    • A recipe card 

3. Creative Promotions

In order to keep your local costumers coming, consider ways to use promotions and discounts to generate revenue NOW by offering a discount LATER. Another way to drive interest is to donate a portion of proceeds to charity (1 in 3 consumers say a charitable donation would sway them to purchase*).

Some promotions could include:

  • One free roll of toilet paper with every gift card purchase.
  • Discount on the next purchase when you order.
  • Donate a portion of their order to charity.
  • Including a t-shirt (or other merch) with each purchase over a certain amount.

4. Delivery for Special Events

Birthdays, anniversaries, weddings…all of these events look very different today than they did even a month ago. Consider ways your café could help these days feel more special.

Some ideas could include:

  • Birthday Package: Friends could order a birthday bundle complete with a sign, birthday hat, balloons, their favorite drink and a birthday pastry for a special person in their life. The café could even hand-deliver the bundle to the individual’s front porch!
  • Anniversary Package: Customers could order a bundle for their loved one with their favorite drink and flowers to help them celebrate this milestone.
  • Wedding Package: Provide a “pre-ceremony” bundle with the bride or groom’s favorite drink, some tasty pastries, and a thoughtful note from the fiancé included.

5. Pre-Batched Mixes

Pre-made mixes are a fun option for your customers to enjoy a tasty mocktail or cocktail (by adding their own alcohol) at home.

Here are a couple of recipe ideas to get you started:

Pineapple Mint Agua Fresca
4 oz. Pineapple Juice
2 oz. Torani Mojito Mint Syrup
58 oz. soda water

Strawberry Lemon Spritz
4 oz. Torani Strawberry Syrup
2 oz. fresh lemon juice
58 oz. soda water

We hope this helped!

These are just some of many creative ways you can expand your offerings to capture consumers’ attention. Have some more ideas? We’d love to hear about them!

Join Torani’s Foodservice Family and let us know how you are pivoting and adapting amidst COVID-19.


*Datassential COVID-19 Report 11: Reinvention April 2020