Turf Wars for Bakery & Coffee Cafes (Infographic)

Growth means capitalizing on the others' strengths, says Technomic

Technomic bakeries coffee cafes (CSP Daily News / Convenience Stores)

CHICAGO -- While bakery and coffee cafes have much in common, consumers have distinct preferences towards one over the other for certain types of visits, according to Technomic in its Bakery & Coffee Cafe Consumer Trend Report. For example, bakery cafes have a stronghold on midday occasions, whereas coffee cafes win with breakfast and beverage occasions.

As a result, bakery cafes are hoping to boost traffic by strengthening their breakfast and coffee programs, while coffee cafes are focusing on improvements to their lunch and evening offerings. Additionally, both are extending their reach with certain consumer segments: select coffee cafes will target low-income and Hispanic consumers, while bakery cafes will develop units in more rural areas.

Technomic's latest research points to growth opportunities via further innovation and differentiation in beverage and evening programs; the expansion and evolution of better-for-you and socially responsible fare; and forward-thinking technological advancements that serve to engage customers and improve their experience.

"Cafes must innovate and differentiate by delivering unique menus and experiences," said Darren Tristano, executive vice president of Technomic Inc. "For bakery cafes, that means strengthening their value and convenience at breakfast, while coffee cafes must prove themselves as a viable evening option. Savory bites, upgraded ambiance and buy-one-get-one beverage deals may help drive after-work social and snack occasions."

Other findings:

  • Cafes are expanding their evening programs, with 36% of bakery-cafe patrons and 25% of coffee-cafe customers visiting for dinner at least monthly.
  • Upscale beverages will strengthen loyalty: a majority of consumers visit bakery (63%) and coffee (84%) cafes at least monthly for beverage-only occasions, and many visit bakery (47%) and coffee (63%) cafes because they serve their preferred coffee.
  • Many consumers say healthy options are important for bakery (50%) and coffee (37%) cafe menus.
  • Socially responsible practices are also at the forefront; about a quarter of consumers are more likely to visit cafes for coffee if it is fair trade.

Chicago-based Technomic offers research and management consulting solutions to clients including food manufacturers and distributors, restaurants and retailers, other foodservice organizations and various institutions aligned with the food industry.