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      • It’s spooky how some coffee shops don’t do happy hour at Halloween

      • After a bizarrely balmy October, the forecasts show a definite dip in temperature over the weekend and into next week. And that, coffee shop owners, is good for business. Also good for business are two important UK calendar dates: Halloween and Bonfire Night. If you haven’t already planned how your café or mobile coffee van can cash in on these opportunities, it isn’t too late. Today, we’re looking at Halloween ideas for coffee shops.

        Decorating a coffee shop for Halloween

        There are few revolutionary ideas when it comes to Halloween decorations, so you don’t need to wrack your brains too hard. What does matter, though, in our opinion, is that you aim for good quality. Cheap and cheesy works fine at a kids’ venue, but since most coffee shop customers are adults, if you’re going spooky, do it well.

        Window decals are widely available – off the shelf or custom-printed – and, provided that you specify easy-peel, are an effective way to draw the attention of passers-by. If you’re on a high street, locals get used to their environment, so a splash of colour catches the eye as often as not. If you’ve got a chalk A-board, get in touch with a local artist and commission a bespoke Halloween decoration. Again, that focus on quality makes a difference. It’s also an opportunity to highlight Halloween-specific hot drinks and snacks.

        Inside, this is the one time of year when it’s ok to have creepy-crawlies seeming to wander across your coffee machine and over the food displays. Rubber spiders are the go-to choice, of course. Cotton-wool or white netting forms spiders’ webs, an old broomstick in the corner, a cauldron, a skull, a carved-out pumpkin…or mini pumpkins in an old-fashioned jar - you know the stuff as well as we do.  You could even order Halloween-themed stirrers to use instead of the usual teaspoons.

        Keep the kids sweet

        By offering trick or treat rewards with every coffee served to an accompanying adult. Cheap and most definitely cheerful. If you’re promoting visits in advance, consider offering goodie-bags to kids who come in costume.

        Offer a Halloween menu

        Pumpkin spiced latte, anyone? Winter is the time when all those different syrup flavours really come into their own – think apple, caramel, raspberry and pumpkin for starters. Go Googling for Halloween coffee recipes and you’ll find a host of easily prepared options. And start perfecting Halloween latte art. A ghoul cast in frothy foam is going to be Instagram heaven – and that’s free advertising for your coffee shop.

        Stay open late

        If your location still sees footfall after dark, your themed decoration and the enticing smell of coffee and treats on a cold autumn night are going to attract customers like moths to a flame. Announce your late opening in advance on all social media channels, accompanied by photos of what awaits – because images encourage click-through and are much more memorable.

        Enjoy – and look out for our Bonfire Night ideas for coffee shops, coming soon…