Dinning “al fresco” is a trend that’s been around us for a few years; it is just that we didn’t know what its name was. “Alfresco” means “On the cooler” and refers to the option offered by some restaurants and other food establishments of having your meal outside the local. It is trendy in the U.S, especially in cities that have beautiful weather all year round. In the U.K, we usually do that on warmer seasons to enjoy the beautiful weather, but many restaurants are getting on-trend and offering “al fresco” even on colder months.
A café barrier kit consists of different graphics or printed canvas attached to cross arms and held together by heavy-duty posts. They are placed forming lines, and they help cafes, coffee shops, restaurants, and other businesses dividing their outdoor spaces. They are often seen as tools used in warmer months, but today we’re going to talk about how you can use them for your business and how practical they are as advertising and marketing tools.
The first thing you need to know about café barriers is that they are not only used on food-related businesses. As they are a solution to mark and divide spaces, they can be used in almost any kind of environment. Also, they offer the possibility of showcasing almost anything you want, from your company’s name to a special sale, and they are highly visible, you can spot them from a few meters of distance. If you find an eye-catching café barrier, you’re most likely to attract some people to your place.
Sometimes, you need to look at your place not as the owner, but as a customer. Do you find it attractive? Do you think it is well-organized? Is it comfortable to sit on there? Would you feel comfortable in a place like that? If one of your answers is “no,” then you need to rethink a little bit about what you’re doing. It is common for many business owners to forget that they need to see their businesses from the client’s point of view, it could be the placement of things or that some spaces are not clearly defined, but those are the smallest details that keep customers away from places.
When this happens, all you need is to think about what you can do to change the customer’s experience. What would make you feel comfortable? Maybe, it could be dividing the space, so the people waiting Inline don’t interfere with the people that already bought something. Perhaps it can be adding something to the outside of your place to call people’s attention, or maybe you can rearrange the space by making some changes. You can add up space without having to perform massive renovations. All you need is a bit of creativity and some printable tools. Keep reading, and we’ll give you some excellent ideas.
So, how can you use printed café barriers? There are mainly two ways, and they involve a lot of ideas for almost any kind of business.
Printed café barriers for outdoor use
Define your area: an example of this can be stalls and markets; they usually struggle to differentiate their space from the surrounding ones so that a café barrier system can help with that. Just by delimitating where their area begins and ends, the customer experience changes tremendously, as people can identify the place. Also, the printed image can showcase the business logo, a picture of their products, or be a decorative item that adds up to the visibility; the possibilities are almost endless.
Queue management: Let’s say you have a food truck, and you always have trouble managing the number of people that are waiting in line to make their orders. You can make things more accessible, and your space look more put together by merely arranging some café barriers to delimitate where people can start and follow the line. You can still play the advertising card on this, as you will be able to showcase a special offer, your menu, and pictures of the plates or everything you want. Café barriers always mix functionality and advertising.
Use for sporting events: Some sporting events use café barriers to delimitate specific areas. For example, they’re used to separate the athletes’ rest area from the public, or used on pop up tents for drinking/eating. On sports events, café barriers shine as marketing tools, as you’ll probably get to see how they showcase the event’s sponsors.
Cafes and bars: Their name comes from here, cafes and bars use them all the time to delimitate where their outdoor area is and set them apart from the nearby competition. If you plan on using them for this, we tell you, if the design looks impressive, many people will come just because of that.
Printed café barriers for indoors use:
Here’s one thing about café barriers that make us love them; they are incredibly versatile. Sometimes the outdoor use seems a bit too obvious, but when you use them for indoor spaces, you realize how versatile they indeed are.
Some ideas to use café barriers on indoors spaces:
Gyms, health spas, and sports centres: Sometimes, these kinds of areas have an “open” design that needs some delimitation to differentiate the sections and services. Café barriers work for that and also are a subtle way to advertise exclusive products offered by the gym/spa, like protein shakes, snacks, and aftercare treatments.
Airports: airports need to delimitate some spaces for passengers and also need some queue management. Instead of using regular rope barriers, they are now using café barriers. That way, they separate lines and also advertise some stores and food places inside the airport. They even use café barriers as a tool to guide people from one side of the airport to another.
Museums and libraries: There is a considerable need for delimitating spaces inside a library and a museum. You can bother other people while making your line if the place it’s too crowded, and also you can collide against some fragile items. Café barriers let these kinds of situations organize the crowd and make viewers flow more comfortably. Also, it protects the items but lets people continue admiring the exhibitions.
Canteens and cafeterias: building walls and division is expensive, so café barriers are great solutions for those places that need to separate areas (like smoking and non-smoking spaces, tables, and chilling spaces) in an inexpensive way. Also, the fact that they can customize the printing makes it a fantastic opportunity to match the aesthetic or give the place more visual interest.
Showrooms: similar to museums, showrooms often have too many people crowded in one place and around items that can be easily damaged. By placing a few café barriers, you get to delimitate the space and also protect your products.
It is a bit complicated for some people to see the functionality of café barriers in indoor spaces. It is important to remember that customer experience is very different from your owner/manager’s point of view. Café barriers help you create divisions and square spaces; that way, the client flow will be more organized and comfortable. Even when the word “barrier” sounds too restrictive, customers like organized spaces because they can find the spots where they want to be and don’t bother other customers/
Even though you can make all of this with natural barriers, café barriers have the advantage of graphics. The graphics will let you display anything you want, from making your space and your logo more visible even to make the barriers look like décor pieces. The possibilities are again, endless.
If you aren’t entirely convinced yet on trying some café barriers for your business, let us keep explaining why they are so awesome. Let’s see what the advantages of using and ordering café barriers are:
They are multi-functional: as we said before, café barriers can be used indoors and outdoors and can fulfil many purposes. Also, they give you the opportunity of promoting your business, services, sales, events, or sponsors. They give you the chance to choose what you want to showcase while you also get to organize and mark out your space.
They are affordable: This is an important one, if you want to make divisions inside your business, chances are a full renovation will cost you a couple of zeros. The same applies to outdoor spaces. When you order café barriers, you’ll be paying for the structure and the canvas, which are much more inexpensive than having to build up walls. The best thing is that the vast majority of café barriers are interchangeable, so if you want to change the graphics that will be the only thing you’ll have to pay for, you can keep reusing the poles and arms for as long as you want
They are portable: especially for markets, stalls, and pop up stores; they need furniture that is easy to set up and arrange. Luckily, café barriers are light weighted, portable, and very sturdy; you can store them easily and have them up the next day in just minutes. This is also perfect for exhibitions, sporting events, or to clean up indoor spaces quickly.
It is a straightforward advertising method: we have mentioned this before, many times, but when you have a business, it is vital for it that you focus on advertising as much as you can. People have to know you exist to buy your products. It is effortless to get lost from the public eye when competitors and other shops surround you, so café barriers give you a chance to stand out and attract people.
Now you can see that café barriers have many advantages and that you can use them for many things. That is great, but before you go to the first printing company and start spending money on some barrier kits, we also want to give you some guidelines on what to look for on café barriers, because there is more on them than just a set of poles and a printed canvas.
Things you must consider when ordering café barriers:
Where you’re going to use them: yes, you can use café barriers for indoors and outdoors spaces, but there is a small difference regarding the sturdiness of the poles and arms that depends on where you’re using the barriers kit. Make sure to specify where you’re using the café barriers; that way, you can order the ones that suit you better.
Cafe barriers for outdoor spaces have a more substantial holding mechanism, as they need to stay up against gusting winds and external elements.
The graphics: Design-wise, the best thing you can do is talking to a professional designer that knows how to make exciting and eye-catching graphics. The advertising part of café barriers depends entirely on how well balanced it is, from colours to the fonts, so it is best to work with someone who knows what they are doing. If you don’t have a specialized team for graphic design, don’t worry! Most printing companies offer you designing services that can help you create fantastic looking graphics.
Quality: this may sound similar to the first point, but you also want to make sure your barriers not only feel secure and sturdy but also to look professionally done and clean. Any kind of bad printing, weak colours showing up, a lousy quality canvas, or flimsy poles will make you look less professional.
Café barriers are useful tools that are getting trendier as we approach the warmer months. They can help you turn your business space onto something completely new without having to perform expensive, time-consuming renovations. Also, they will give you the opportunity of advertising your business, and people will get to see it more because it will stand out from the establishment. The greatest thing about the café barriers kit is how practical and flexible they are. They fulfil more than one purpose and can be done using different methods; for example, you can order them and ask for carbon-neutral materials or even recycle old ones by merely ordering new graphics. Reliable printing companies can help you customize the café barrier kits the way you want and adjust to your budget, so what are you waiting for? Give them a try, and you’ll see what an excellent investment they are.