Cafes are the new millennial rage. From being a hub for Instagram check-ins to informal spaces for work-place meetings, a cafe serves it all. The interior design of a cafe is more than just choosing the right tables and chairs. The flow of your cafe will decide if it will be one where customers walk-in and walk-out or one where they can spend their time as they please. In today’s time, it is not enough to apply restaurant logic to a cafe interior design. A cafe is an experience by itself today. And we are listing the factors that will help you curate the right experience for your customers.
The first and foremost thing to consider before we dive into other factors is the cafe’s concept. This is basically what you envision your establishment to be and the kind of target audience you are looking at based on your location. Cafes generally have a fluid customer demographics. But there will always be an apparent difference between a university-campus cafe versus a high-end cafe. Differences in pricing tend to create varied customer expectations. It is important to know the kind of environment expected from your cafe and a basic sense of the vibe you wish to deliver. This is a good solid place to start building your concept. Rest assured, the choices you make while picking your cafe’s layout will impact the turnover time for each table, which will be crucial while finalizing your furniture.
Once you have locked down your concept, the next is setting the right ambience. This will essentially set the vibe of your cafe and possibly the mood for most customers. We will be looking into four significant factors that appeal to the senses- the colour scheme, lighting, acoustics, and your cafe’s signature aroma/scent. These factors should be taken into account to give your customers the best cafe experience. The effectiveness of each element should be weighed and balanced in a manner for them to coexist in the perfect proportion. Each of these will have a unique effect on the customer’s psychology.
(i) Colour Scheme
Visual cues are the first things that your customers will capture. The colours you choose will be vital to set the concept of your cafe as well as create a mood when they enter. Colours consisting of reds and yellows help stimulate diet, which creates the impulse for hunger in our minds. Which is why most fast food joints are known to use these colours in different degrees.
While these colours can help stir customers’ spontaneity in making decisions, it also makes them exit quickly. For increased table turnover time, it will be beneficial to stay away from brighter shades and choose relaxing pastel tones. Subtle shades will balance the environment and stop it from overpowering the customers’ eyes.
The wrong lighting can completely mess with the vibe of a cafe. With incorrect lighting, a cafe with the best possible interior design may seem dull and uninspiring. To create a cosy and comfortable environment, dim lights are a perfect choice. In addition to giving it a rustic experience, it will set an exclusive mood for your customers, separating it from the everyday world. While we dim lighting is ideal, dark is unacceptable. Do make sure that there is enough illumination present to see comfortably. If you are looking for an alternative to this setting, recreating natural-looking daylight would be equally favourable.
One absolute to keep in mind is absolutely no flashy bright lights. Not only will they seem unnatural but will also distract customers from their food, which will end up overpowering their senses and making them uncomfortable.
‘Sound’ is often associated with the way people feel emotions.
Hence, our mind automatically reacts to various sounds in various ways. This is why acoustics become an integral element of the interior design in a cafe. Since cafes have been a space for people to socialize or work independently, the music required is minimal.
In bars, loud music is preferred since it generates impulses that suit the type of bar and promote larger liquor intake in patrons. The same logic cannot be applied to cafes. The music playing in the background of the cafe needs to be regulated from time to time in a way that it kills the silence but also allows for ease of conversation.
(iv) Signature Scent
After dealing with visual and auditory cues, the final element to determine the ambience is the scent. The smell your cafe carries will help trigger different impulses within the customer. The dining area of most restaurants strongly smells of the food as it helps trigger hunger. Similarly, most cafes smell coffee, so the whiff being carried to the people outside will make them crave coffee, reminding them of its taste with the strong aroma. This is also a distinct smell that the customers will carry with themselves when they think of the coffee shop, inducing them to visit often and order more. You can also create a more luxurious relaxing experience by using the scent of Vanilla. This scent is a natural relaxant that will make people linger. Or using a subtle cucumber smell during peak hours to make the cafe seem bigger, airy, and refreshing.
Aesthetics is a vital part of the restaurant industry and applies to every type and format. The success of cafes, like most restaurants, is dependent on customer satisfaction and the way the customers are made to feel in your establishment is crucial to satisfy them. Thus, interior design binds these factors together to deliver that stellar ambience your guest deserve.