Surprising facts about the businesses behind the Australian coffee culture

In 2018, TR Consulting conducted a nation-wide survey of Australian cafe owners. Now in 2021, they have compared the results with how the industry is faring during Coronavirus.

To date, there are more than 20,000 cafes across Australia that employ over 127,000 workers.

Not only do they provide what many early morning risers would consider an essential service, they have the potential to be a much needed boost to the economic recovery of the country’s CBD’s and inner suburbs struggling to get back foot traffic post-lockdown.

The Coffee Shop Owners Report is the first of its kind in a series of industry investigations into the successes, challenges and failures involved in operating a small business.

Whilst the cafe & coffee culture in Australia is fast becoming an addiction, the individuals behind the industry often face an uphill battle to keep their businesses open, financially viable and competitive with the devastating and ongoing impacts of COVID-19.

Takeaways from TR Consulting‘s Coffee Shop Owners Report

Although we are self-proclaimed coffee connoisseurs, Australia didn’t even rank top 40 in the world for the highest annual coffee consumption per capita (we came in at 42!)

Despite repeated lockdowns and restrictions as a result of the pandemic, only 3.7% of cafe owners temporarily shut down their business operations, and only 7% had to take out a business loan for financial assistance

When reflecting on the mental health impact of COVID-19, 37% recorded a score of 10/10 (with 10 being a significantly negative impact). The average number out of 10 was 6.7

In 2018, finding and keeping good chefs was a challenge for cafe business owners, whereas in 2021, it is holding on to a top barista

Although there is a big focus on foot traffic when it comes to building up a good reputation in a brick-and-mortar store, cafe owners ranked Social Media as their most important marketing tool in both 2018 and 2021