Frequently Asked Questions
Our church would love to have a café but we have no idea how to set up and run one. Where do we start?
Contact us here at The Daily Java. We'll meet with you and ask you a few questions about the church and its purpose for a coffee area or café. Then we will walk you through the process and the costs step by step. We feel it is very important for the church to know all these details up front while still in the planning stages. That way there are no surprises down the road when it comes time to purchase and install equipment.
If you decide to work with us, we guarantee to help you succeed through proper equipment selection, products, layout and, most of all, TRAINING. We will support you in getting your café up and running with training sessions for staff and volunteers. Our goal is to make your café as successful as possible, because that makes US more successful.
What kind of revenue can we expect the café to produce? Will this be an asset or a liability for us?
First, the primary reason most churches set up a Third Place Café is to create fellowship. For that point, a café is a huge asset. Second, a properly set-up and run café should produce revenues between $500 - $1,500 per Sunday. The key for successfully building both fellowship and financial support for ministries or the bottom-line is proper planning, layout, equipment, product and training - something the Daily Java takes great pride in providing.
Our church has a café but it isn't doing too well. In fact, we're losing money on it. What are we doing wrong?
There are several things to consider if your café is not doing well. Placement of the register and drink pick-up counters can make a big difference in how fast the line goes as can the type of equipment you have. The location of your cafe can also factor in on your success, as well as your menu and pricing. We would need to consult with you on some of these things to determine why your café is not doing well. Give us a call; we'll be happy to give you a free consultation over the phone. Often just by changing one or two things, your café will see a difference.
How much does it cost to put a coffeehouse into the church?
That depends. If the café area is put in during construction with correct layout, design, plumbing and electricity, then all you have to do is install the equipment and counters. Equipment costs vary greatly depending on the size of the church and what the goal is for the café area. The two most expensive pieces of equipment are the espresso machine and the pastry case (optional); prices on these can go up to several thousand.
For good, quality café equipment that will set you up for success, the church should expect to spend around $15,000 - $25,000.
The Daily Java can do a free consultation with your church to determine your equipment needs and then send you an estimate of what the costs will be. We are also happy to provide equipment spec sheets to your GC to help determine any remodeling costs.
I'm not sure the church has the budget for all this right now. Is there a way to do it cheaper?
If the start-up costs look to be too high for the current budget, we often recommend that the church postpone putting in a café rather than trying to do it cheaply. Purchasing old or cheap equipment can set the café up for failure and the church will end up losing money. It's much better to wait and do it the right way. An alternative may be to just serve coffee; however, coffee is no longer the draw for the 20-40 year olds that it was back in the 80s and 90s. So know that this will limit the growth of fellowship, but it could be a start in the right direction.
Our church is putting up a new building and we would like to have a café in it eventually. Can we just leave a space for it and put it in later?
Yes, and this is actually a very good idea. Unfortunately, these areas are often created with no foresight on future spacing, plumbing or electric needs. Then, when it comes time to create the café, the equipment won't fit, the drain is in the wrong place and the counters are too short and there's no place for an ice machine. All this means extra remodeling costs. If your church is putting up a new building, we are happy to consult with your architect and/or general contractor to go over all these specs with them. That way, when you are ready, all you have to do is put in the equipment.
Do we have to buy equipment from The Daily Java in order to use your coffee and other products?
No, we have had many established cafes switch over to our coffees and products because of the quality, pricing and service that we provide. We also provide our churches with on-going support, recipes, information on new products and trends. Our goal is to make you successful in building fellowship and raising money for ministries, however that may look.
Could we just sell drip coffee?
Until the church is able to do a full cafe, a basic coffee service is the most popular 2nd choice, but be aware that this option does not appeal as much to the 20-40 age group, who are interested in lattes and smoothies over coffee. However, it is a start in building some fellowship. Just make sure that you are using good, quality, fresh-roasted coffee. If you serve the "cheap stuff", most people will not come back for more.
The Daily Java has helped many churches get successfully started with great coffee and a plan to build to a future Third Place Café. We will do a personal church house blend for you at no extra charge. This way you are promoting your church and not another coffee company.
Can the church use some of the equipment it already has?
Most of the time, yes. If the church already has a good coffee brewer, it can often be transferred to the café, or the brewer can be shared between the café and hospitality. If the church already has an ice machine, there is usually no need to purchase a second one. The café can use an ice caddy instead.
One of our biggest goals at The Daily Java is to save your church as much money as possible and part of that is preventing the purchase of unnecessary or duplicate equipment. Our job is not only to help you select what you need but also to let you know what you don't need.
How much do espresso machines cost?
Espresso machines are like cars. There are cheap ones, really expensive ones and mid-priced ones. The cheap ones can save money up front but often don't stand up under long term use and end up having to be serviced a lot or replaced. There are expensive, fancy ones with lots of bells and whistles but most of those are not necessary for a church café. We recommend a good mid-priced machine that will work well for you long term, be very easy to use and make drinks quickly and efficiently. You should expect to spend about $7,000 - $13,000 for a new machine that will fit your needs. Cheaper machines are not recommended for high volume or long term use.
Espresso machines purchased from The Daily Java include basic installation as well as training for your staff and volunteers on how to use and care for the machine. We will also provide you with drink recipes and instructions, and support on planning your menu. Plus, we are there for you if you have questions or maintenance issues. When properly maintained, most espresso machines will last for several years.
If your church is 1,500+ attendees per service and growing, we recommend you leave space for a second espresso machine. Once you reach about 2,000 per service, you will need it to keep up with the volume.
Our church has an old espresso machine that needs fixing. What is the cost of fixing an old one versus buying a new one?
If your church already owns an espresso machine that needs parts or maintenance, we are happy to help with that; just give us a call. Depending on how old the machine is, what is wrong with it and availability of parts, we can help you to determine what the best decision would be. Sometimes used machines can be fixed up to work for a few more years; other times it is better to go ahead and purchase a new one.
Should we run the café with staff, volunteers or both? Which is better?
We recommend that you have at least one or two staff members in charge of the café area to keep things organized and consistent. Some churches prefer to have the rest of the staff be volunteers while other churches that are open during the week may choose to use hired hourly staff instead.
How many people will be needed to run the café on a Sunday morning?
For most cafes, 3-6 people are adequate. You want to avoid having too many people behind the counter as it can get crowded and chaotic. If you have extra volunteers; use them to keep the condiment bar and seating area tidy, greet people waiting in line, or pass out samples.
What do we do if our espresso machine or coffee brewer breaks down?
You should contact the person or company that sold you the machine as they should be the ones to honor the warranty. If you bought it from The Daily Java, just give us a call. Many times, problems can be fixed over the phone. If not, we can schedule a technician to come out and take a look at it. Our service network covers the U.S.
If you did not buy the machine from us and are not sure where it came from, The Daily Java may still be able to help you in getting it serviced, just give us a call.
What kind of coffee does The Daily Java offer?
We offer over 100 different coffees and blends from all over the world, including select organic and Fair Trade varieties. We are happy to provide samples and assist you in selecting the one that works best for your church house blend. We can also email you a list of our most popular coffees upon request.
Is your coffee expensive?
No, we believe in providing quality products at a reasonable price. Our coffee is fresh roasted when you order it and delivered to you whole bean, ground, or in pre-measured packets. Our coffee is about a third to half the price of Starbucks.
Do you carry other stuff, like syrups and smoothies and teas?
Yes, The Daily Java carries a full line of award-winning café products. We provide syrups, blended ice, fruit smoothies, chai, hot tea and iced tea. We also carry supplies needed for espresso bars like steaming pitchers, spoons, thermometers etc. If you need something that we don't carry, we can direct you where to get it.
How do we order products from you?
Ordering is very easy. You can call our office anytime during the week at 888-347-5282 or email us at email@example.com. Most orders are shipped out the same day as you ordered.
Do you require your customers to sign contracts?
No. We want our customers to use our products and services because they want to not because they feel obligated. If The Daily Java is not fitting the needs of your café, you are free to look elsewhere with no consequences. We say this because we have never lost a customer. If you're ever not happy with anything we're doing please let us know and we will do what we can to fix it.
What about leasing equipment instead of buying it. Is that cheaper?
No, it can actually cost you more in the long run. Please be wary of companies who require a 2 year+ contract requiring you to buy their products while "leasing" their machines. Often the price of the product is much higher to "build in" the cost of the machine and by the time the contract is over you've actually paid for the machine, many times over! Worse of all, you will still not own it.
We strongly advise churches to buy equipment as opposed to long-term leasing. Do the math! You will save money this way. The Daily Java offers churches a 15-25% discount off list prices for equipment.