Ask any adult what they need upon waking up, and having their morning coffee is probably high on their list of priorities. That’s good if you’re planning on opening a coffee shop, for sure!

But where should you open a coffee shop? That’s not a question to take lightly, according to Toast:

Location choice is no small decision, the best way to go about finding the perfect location is to take your time and not to rush the process.”

Coffee Shop Location Analysis: What to Look For

In choosing a coffee shop location, looking at the big picture (i.e. what city it’s in) is important. That’s because certain places will naturally have more foot traffic, and also potentially a higher household income, leaving more disposable income for purchases like a daily specialty latte.

But getting granular may even be more important. After all, you could open a coffee shop building in a bad location within a great city, and nobody wants that.

According to Toast, these are essential things to consider when choosing a location:

  • Rent cost
  • Competitor locations
  • Neighborhood trends
  • Where your target market is located
  • Visibility
  • Size of the site
  • Previous tenants
  • And even your gut feeling

OpenTable recommends looking at both micro and macro level data to get a complete demographic understanding of the larger area as well as the specific neighborhood and even exact location, and doing this for every location you’re considering opening a coffee shop in.

5 Best Cities to Open a Coffee Shop in the U.S.

These 5 cities are some of the best locations for coffee shops in the U.S. in 2024.

1. Seattle, WA

Known widely for being the birthplace of big names in coffee such as Starbucks, Peet’s, and Seattle’s Best, Seattle, Washington has loved its coffee even before these chains were founded. Is there a market for coffee in Seattle? You bet. But it is fairly saturated.

2. Orlando, FL

Home to Walt Disney World and the University of Central Florida (UCF), there’s definitely a market for everyone’s favorite caffeinated beverage in “The City Beautiful”. Plus, the costs of living and real estate in this city are lower than many other major cities. If Orlando doesn’t seem like a good fit, maybe another Florida city is; Sarasota, Fort Myers, Lakeland, Jacksonville, Ocala, Tampa, Daytona Beach (and more), are all included in U.S. News and World Report’s list of “Fastest-Growing Places in the U.S. in 2023-2024”.

3. Atlanta, GA

A growing tech sector, a huge arts and culture scene (coffee culture is, after all, rooted in counterculture), a bustling airport that brings in plenty of business travelers, and more make Atlanta a fantastic spot to open a coffee chain.

4. Portland, OR

Coffee culture in Portland is strong, as is appreciation for artisanal brews. Portland also is home to a unique sense of community, making coffee shops that are looking to be involved in local happenings especially welcome.

5. Austin, TX

Easily one of the fastest-growing cities in the U.S. within the past decade, Austin, TX is home to the University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin). Like Atlanta, the tech and corporate sector is growing here, too, making it a great place to open a coffee shop.

Considering a Coffee Franchise? Choose Ellianos

If you’re thinking about opening a coffee shop and have considered a franchise, choose Ellianos. We’re one of the fastest-growing coffee franchises in the United States, and we’re also honored to have been included in Entrepreneur Magazine’s highly competitive “Franchise 500®” list.

Curious if opening an Ellianos is right for you? Learn more about our franchising opportunities now.

Chad Stewart

About Chad Stewart

Chad Stewart has long enjoyed the value of hard work, starting his first job at age fifteen and currently serving as Ellianos’ Vice President of Franchise Development. In this role, he drives company growth, franchise development, and site selection, and of course, consumes a large number of iced lattes. Chad is striving toward the goal to open 100 Ellianos store locations by the end of 2024. While he is highly determined to put in the hard work to do so, he is equally energetic to have fun throughout every step of the process. Chad genuinely looks forward to work on Mondays but also enjoys spending time with his wife and children traveling, attending baseball games, and frequenting unique local donut shops. Though he admits to being more of a mountaineer than a beachgoer, Chad currently resides in Northern Florida with his family.

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