How To Start Coffee Shop With No Money

By Fahad Arafin -- Saturday, 04 May, 2024
how to start coffee shop with no money

Are you one of those with a huge passion for the coffee business but is worried about capital? Then you are on the right platform because, in this article, you will get all the information on how to start coffee shop with no money or how to open a cafe with no experience. Always remember that when you have creative ideas and are committed to your work, nothing can stop your dream from being fulfilled.

Are Coffee Shops A Good Investment?

are coffee shops a good investment

Are Coffee Shops A Good Investment? Or how profitable is a coffee shop? These are the common questions for the coffee shop owner. The answer is quite complex because profits and success depend on several factors. Like every business, the coffee shop business has some pros and cons. However, from a financial point of view, coffee shops are a good investment because you will make around 5% of net profits from a coffee shop.

According to the UK Accommodation and Food Services GVA statistics, In the last ten years, approximately 2.3 billion cups of coffee have been sold in the UK. Where 82% of coffee consumers have visited the coffee shop every week. 

You are thinking about the coffee shop's profit margin? A coffee shop business can be a good investment. A coffee shop has a high-profit margin with lower operating costs. So always remember when you do your job in the right way, a coffee shop can be highly profitable and an amazing business opportunity.

Moreover, coffee shops are undoubtedly the fastest-growing food and beverage business sector. The industry of coffee business is increasing day by day. Where the other restaurant and beverage business is quite difficult, the coffee shop business is less complicated. 

As we know, the price of coffee is fixed and quite low compared to other foods and beverages. As a result, you need higher sales to turn your investment into profit. So finally we can say that coffee shop investment is a great investment if you maintain your business properly. Moreover, coffee shop profit margins are extremely high. 

How To Start Coffee Shop With No Money: 10 Effective Ways

how to start coffee shop with no money

Can you start a coffee shop with no money? The answer is definitely yes. Starting a coffee shop with no money doesn't mean that you can start your coffee business without having any investment. It means when you have an amazing coffee shop business idea but need more money to turn it into reality. In that case, you may use different types of business strategies when you need more money to start a coffee shop.

So stay with us and grab some proven ideas on how to start coffee shop with no money.

  1. Understanding The Coffee Business

When you are planning to start a coffee shop, it is very important to understand the coffee business ideas properly. Starting any business is a very  challenging task. So it is crucial to understand the business ins and outs, pros and cons before jumping into the business. 

Coffee is considered to be the most popular beverage around the world. It is estimated that around 60% of Americans drink coffee every day. In some countries, the percentage of drinking coffee is much higher than in America. 

So definitely, coffee is one of the biggest beverage industries. As a result, you need an elaborate knowledge of the coffee business industry.

Here are some ways that can help you to understand the coffee business. 

#Market Research

To understand the coffee business, you have to do complete market research on the industry. For example, what are the most popular coffee types, what coffee is in trend, what customers' preferences are, popular seasonal beverages, etc.? 

In addition, as part of market research, you can visit some coffee shops in your desired location and learn about their strengths or weaknesses. This will help you understand the coffee business industry.  

#Understanding the Cost

How do I make a budget for a cafe? It is one of the most crucial questions for the coffee shop startup owner. When a coffee shop entrepreneur can not make an ideal budget, he seems to fail to open a coffee shop. Before starting any business, it is essential to understand the estimated cost. These costs include licenses and permissions, inventory, rent and utility, equipment and other materials, staff salaries, etc. This will provide a visual graph of the overall investment needed to start your coffee business.  

#Industry Challenge

Every industry has specific challenges. So, to understand the market, you have to find out those challenges that you may face while starting and running a coffee shop. Moreover, when you know the challenges, you can take all the precautions before starting your coffee business. This will help you to continue your coffee shop business in the long run.  

  1. Make a Unique Coffee Shop Business Plan

make a unique coffee shop business plan

A well defined business plan is considered to be the backbone of any business. So it is important to establish a brief business plan that covers every part of your business. It could be very challenging to start a coffee shop with no money, but not the impossible one. 

With an advanced and well defined business plan anyone can turn this impossible task to possible. A comprehensive business plan will act as a road map for your coffee shop business. It will easily make your way comfortable and turn your business into a profitable business. 

Here are the two important parts of a unique business plan. 

#Set a Business Mission

Business mission is a very used and familiar term in the business industry. It is basically the main purpose of any company or business institution. So, while making a business plan, you should define a particular goal for your business. 

The main goal of any business is to make maximum profits. Along with these, defining a business mission is important so that the employees can easily understand their duties and use this mission as motivation.  

#Create a Business Vision

A business vision basically describes the desirable position of the business in the future. In your business vision, you set specific goals for a certain time, like ten to twenty years or more. Business visions help to identify your business progress. So, definitely, you should have specific business visions for your coffee shop business.

  1. Select a Location Where Operating Cost is Low

Suitable location plays a vital role in any coffee shop business. So, while planning to start a coffee shop business, always try to find a location where the coffee shop can be more visible and you can make more profits. There are several strategies that can help you choose suitable locations for building a coffee shop.

Let's find out those strategies.

#Target Your Audience and Demographic

The first and most important factor in choosing a suitable location for your coffee shop is understanding the demographics and your targeted audience. You have analyzed the targeted audience and their preferences in depth. 

For example, the income and lifestyle of the targeted audiences. Moreover, it will be wise to choose a location near a college campus, corporate offices, residential areas, restaurants, shopping malls, etc. 

#Accessibility and Visibility

Accessibility and Visibility are other crucial factors in selecting a location for the coffee shop business. It can attract more and more traffic to your restaurant. While your main priority is accessibility and Visibility, you have to look for a place where there is a high amount of vehicle flow and significant foot traffic.  

#Security and Safety

Security and Safety should always be your priority before selecting your coffee shop location. A place with maximum Safety and security is always the first choice for customers and business investors. So you have to evaluate the location wisely to ensure that there are lower crime rates and higher Safety. 

#Future Growth

A coffee shop business is not a seasonal business. You have to think about its future growth. So, before selecting the location, you have to look for an area that is already familiar or is developing, and that place can be very attractive in the future.   

#Competition Analysis

The most challenging factor is competition analysis in terms of choosing a suitable location for your coffee shop. When you choose any location, you have to conduct a brief analysis of the existing competitors. 

Moreover, you have to find out their weaknesses and strengths. Competition analysis will help you a lot to create a unique coffee shop with extraordinary features.

  1. Calculate Your Startup Cost

Once you have decided to start your coffee shop business and are determined to make your own decisions, it's time to fulfill your dream. Calculating all the startup costs of your coffee shop is crucial. Opening a coffee shop in a small town required less startup cost compared to a famous city.

Startup cost encompasses all the costs of opening a business. For example insurance, raw materials and equipment, utilities, shop renting, staff and other expenses. Startup costs should be monitored closely in any industry because today's expenses are your future investment. 

Calculating startup costs wisely will help you get an idea of how much money you need to start a coffee shop. Once you have calculated your startup cost, you have to look for the next step for your business. 

  1. Finding Funds for Your Coffee Shop Business

finding funds for your coffee shop business

After calculating your startup cost, you should consider how to start coffee shop with no money. This question will provide all the answers to how to get funds for your coffee shop business. So, look at some ways to get funds for a coffee shop. 

#Apply for a Business Loan for a Coffee Shop

One of the most important and common ways of starting a coffee shop with no money is getting a business loan. A business loan is specifically planned for the purposes of business. 

You can get business loans from different types of government banks, traditional private banks, credit unions, online lenders, etc. Business loans provide financial support to business owners, and the owners have to repay the borrowed money with interest over time. 

The time and the rate of interest depend on the type of business loan. It is a very secure way to finance your business. A business loan should be your priority when you are looking for a way to start a coffee shop with no money.

#Looking for an Investor

Business investors are another potential way of getting finance for your business. So you have to find the coffee shop investors for your coffee shop business. Business investors can be a person or any company or group. 

However, their main motive is to invest some money in different types of business. In return, they can take a business share, make a loan repayment, or make profits. Investors always look for people who have an amazing business plan and are very serious about the business. 

It could be difficult to find any appropriate investor for your coffee shop. You have to keep trying your best to find the investor. An investor only then will agree to invest in your coffee business when they find the potentiality of your business's success.

#Take money from Family or Friends

When you have no money but want to start a coffee shop, you can take money from your family members or friends as a loan. After making profits from your coffee shop business, you can easily return the money. As with your family members, you can also borrow money from your friends who are willing to invest in your business.

#Get Help From Crowdfunding

Another way of financing your coffee shop is to look for the different types of crowdfunding sectors like GoFundMe, AngelList, Kickstarter, etc. Crowdfunding is an excellent way of financing any business. It basically works through different types of loans, exchanging money, sharing business, donations, etc. To get crowdfunding, you have to make a web page for your coffee shop and invite people to invest in your business. 

#Credit Card Finance

Credit card funding is another spicy way to fund your coffee shop. You can get a certain amount of money as a coffee shop loan by using your credit card. It could be beneficial for your startup business. Consider it as an alternative to a traditional loan. 

  1. Create a Coffee Shop Menu That Saves Money

The coffee shop business is one of the most competitive businesses and the menu could be a great turn-on for any food or beverage business. So, while starting a coffee shop, you should be very careful about menu planning. 

Always try to do something different and new that the customers can appreciate. Before creating your menu, you should take a look at the other coffee shop menus, which are your competitors. It will provide a wide range of knowledge about your coffee shop menu. 

While making a coffee menu, you can experiment with some new types of coffee flavors in your selected region. One more important thing to keep in mind is that at the start, you should start with a limited menu so that you can keep the focus on quality. 

It helps to grow your audience very fast. Moreover, you can also add some extra items to your coffee shop menu that are easily affordable. You may also ask yourself what to sell in a coffee shop, and it will help you make a coffee shop menu. 

Here is a list of some items that could be your ideal coffee shop menu.

#Espresso Beverages

Some popular types of espresso items are cappuccino, mocha, lattle, americano, macchiato, etc. 

#Cold Beverages

Most popular types of cold beverages are iced  coffee, hibiscus mocktini, coconut water lemonade, iced lattes, etc.

#Hot Drinks

Some casual types of hot drinks are matcha lattes, hot toddy, hot chocolate, etc.

#Tea Items

Tea items are Green tea, black tea, traditional tea, herbal tea, etc.

#Fast Food Items

Popular fast food items are sandwiches, pastries, cookies, burgers, hot dogs, etc.

  1. Get All the Equipments

get all the equipments

Equipment purchase is an important task when starting a coffee shop. You have to invest a handsome amount of money to pursue equipment. Moreover, while you are going to start your coffee shop with money, you should be more careful about buying the equipment. 

As you are starting your coffee shop business with little to no money, you can purchase used equipment instead of new equipment. It can reduce your cost in a great way.

On the other hand, quality equipment is very crucial. When you have quality equipment, you can get better output. Investing in equipment for coffee shops is a long-term investment, and your business's success and growth depend on that.

#List of the Equipment for a coffee shop.

  • Espresso Machine
  • Espresso Grinder
  • Regular Coffee Grinder
  • Coffee Brewers
  • Coffee Roaster
  • Water Filtration System
  • Freezers and Refrigerators
  • Ice Machine
  • Dip Brewer
  • Ovens and Toaster
  • Blenders
  • Hot Water Dispenser
  • Shelving and Display Board
  • POS System
  • Washing Basin, etc.

#List of raw materials for coffee shops.

  • Coffee Beans
  • Water
  • Brown Sugar
  • Sugar
  • Milk
  • Whipped Cream
  • Syrups
  • Chocolate Bar
  • Sauce
  • Frappease Powder
  • Matcha Powder
  • Heavy Cream, etc.
  1. Get All the Necessary License and Permission

Before starting a coffee shop, it is essential to get all the necessary licenses, permissions and government grants for coffee shops. You can ask a coffee shop owner or a business expert about what licenses do you need to open a coffee shop.

This will help you run your coffee shop smoothly. Here, we will discuss those necessary licenses and permissions. 

#Business Registrations

The first and foremost responsibility of getting all the important licenses and permissions is to register your coffee shop as a legal business entity. There are three most common types of business registration: limited liability company(LLC), partnership, and proprietorship. 

Among the three, LLC is the most commonly used, offering the maximum protection for your personal assets. The cost of business registration varies depending on the state or region. 

#Zoning/Area Laws

Every area and zone has specific regulations and laws regarding starting a shop or business. So, you have to get the zone permission for the coffee shop, if any.  

#Health and Food Safety Permissions

A coffee shop is a food business. So, you have to follow some food and safety licenses before starting a coffee shop; according to the food safety regulations, you have to maintain proper food hygiene and a healthy environment.


To protect your coffee shop's business, you must get insurance coverage. General liability insurance is the most common type of insurance for a coffee shop. 

  1. Hire and Train Your Staff

It is not possible to run a coffee shop alone. You must have to hire employees to run and operate your coffee successfully. So, it is important to hire the right staff for your coffee shop, especially when you start your coffee shop with no money. Hiring a dedicated and talented employee within your budget is one of the major tasks of a coffee shop owner. 

The right employee can make a great impact on your coffee shop. Before jumping into employee hiring, you have to actually calculate how many employees you need. Hiring more and fewer employees could be a great turnover for your coffee shop. So, you definitely have to recruit the exact number of employees you need so that you can run your coffee shop smoothly. 

During the recruiting process, you can use different strategies. You can use different types of social media, newspapers, and job agencies to hire your staff. But you have to make sure you have written all the criteria on your job description according to your needs. It will help you find the right employee for your coffee shop. Moreover, you can also arrange for training sessions to make your staff much more effective.

  1. Do coffee Shop Marketing

do coffee shop marketing

Running a coffee shop is much harder than starting a coffee shop. You can open a coffee shop any time, but making it a successful coffee shop takes much hard work and planning. One of the most effective ways to gain brand recognition is marketing your coffee shop. You can use several types of marketing strategies for your coffee shop brand promotions. Social media marketing is one of the most useful and cost-effective marketing tools right now. So you can publish content, images, videos, and customer reviews to attract more customers.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Question)

How Much Does An Average Coffee Shop Make A Day?

It is quite difficult to calculate the exact revenue of a coffee shop per day. According to the National Coffee Association, a well-established coffee shop can sell around 200 to 300 cups of coffee per day independently, making revenue of approximately $800 to $1000. However, the range can vary due to location and many other factors.

Can I Run A Coffee Shop From Home?

Yes, you can definitely run a coffee shop from home. But it's a little bit harder than in a commercial location. If you can manage all the licenses and requirements that are mandatory for running a coffee shop, then you can easily run your coffee shop business from home. Home based coffee business is also getting popular day by day. 

How Many Employees Do I Need For My Coffee Shop?

The number of employees needed for a coffee shop depends on its menu and size. When you have a small to mid-level coffee shop with a simple menu, you can run it with 2 to 4 employees. On the other hand, when you have a large coffee shop with a complex menu, you may require 5 to 10 employees.  

Final Thought

Never let your dream go down due to any difficulties. Make yourself strong so that you can face any challenge, no matter how difficult the task is. The coffee shop business is a very demanding business that is increasing very rapidly. It could be a good time to start your coffee shop business. You may also open a mobile coffee shop or drive through coffee stand. In our article, we provided all the information on how to start coffee shop with no money. So save your time and grab the chance to become a coffee shop owner even if you don't have any money.