How 'brand fatigue' is shaping the coffee shops of the future

By Sophie Witts

- Last updated on GMT

How 'brand fatigue' is shaping the coffee shops of the future

Related tags Coffee Starbucks

Coffee chains such as Starbucks and Costa are at risk of ‘brand fatigue’ with customer loyalty beginning to waver, according to new research by Allegra and BRITA.

Sales at the UK’s coffee shops grew 10 per cent in the last year​ to £7.9bn, with 2.2bn cups sold.

But despite Costa, Starbucks and Café Nero holding 53 per cent of the outlet share, the chains could soon be facing a battle for customer loyalty as the number of coffee shops continues to grow.

Companies are already beginning to innovate to capture interest. Costa has launched the first of its artisan Costa Fresco concept in London with a range of hot food and desserts​ such as fish pie and sticky toffee pudding.

Starbucks has begun serving an evening menu​ and alcohol at selected stores in a bid to boost its late night trade.

The group will also be launching its Teavana brand in the UK​ this year, starting with a range of iced teas this summer and hot varieties including matcha and rooibos this autumn.

Victor Frankowski, barista consultant, said: “Consumer loyalty will continue to decline because there are so many options to choose from.

“Big brands are[already] innovating the coffee shop concepts. Around the world, they are creating stunning environments that push traditional design boundaries, and recognise the importance of the killer experience.”

How else could coffee shops change?

Coffee shops could look very different in the future as brands continue to adapt to customer needs.

According to Allegra and BRITA, one in five consumers would like to eventually see full table service in coffee shops.

Menu and cup sizes could also be set to shrink as diners begin to prioritise quality of coffee over quantity.

More stores could follow Starbucks to launch an evening menu, with two thirds of customers happy to enjoy hot drinks in the evening, with a third preferring to do so in coffee shops.

Finally, Allegra predicts that technology will continue to change customer engagement, with a rise in ordering apps allowing guests to pay for drinks before they walk through the door.

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