In years gone by it was fair to say that comfy cafe seating wasn’t really a priority for most cafe owners. Instead the emphasis was on how quickly they could turn customers around and make a profit. In fact no so long ago, café’s were full of what were commonly known as ’15 minute chairs’; so called because customers could only sit on them for around 15 minutes before they became numb from the waist down. This meant that they didn’t hang around therefore creating seating for the next poor soul to walk in off the street.
While this worked at a time when a cafe was a noisy place where you grabbed a quick coffee and sandwich, something happened around the end of 20th century. The whole dynamic of the cafe changed.
By the end of the 1990’s internet access became easily accessible to all and as sales of home PC’s and laptops took off, being able to work from home became a real possibility. This resulted in a sizeable shift in the working pattern Suddenly, more and more people began working from home. The large coffee chains were quick to pick up on this and due to some clever marketing, certain establishments began to be seen as the ‘third place‘ – A different place between home and work where friends could meet, people could relax – and by offering free Wi-Fi – a place where the work at home community could carry out their work.
Ultimately this meant that bum-numbing cafe seating would no longer suffice. Instead the emphasis was on comfortable cafe furniture. Ultimately café’s were now being seen as places where people could relax, unwind, or be productive if they wanted and this entailed having the right ambience and most importantly, the right cafe furniture. Out went the rows of ‘same old, same old‘ tables and chairs and in came sofa’s, tub chairs, and even work stations in order that café’s could accommodate the needs of 21st century people.
Nowadays the emphasis on comfy cafe furniture is highly important to such an extent that there’s a certain level of expectation amongst new customs visiting a cafe for the first time. You only have to look on places such as Trip Advisor and Yell to find sorry reviews against cafe owners who decided to ignore the comfort of their seating at their peril. Comments such as “Great coffee but awful seating, so it’s a take-out from now on” are all too commonplace.
So how do you avoid these pitfalls?
Quite simply; try before you buy! Sit on the furniture for a good while and see whether it remains comfortable. Generally speaking, if it’s comfortable enough for you, it’s sufficient enough for your customers.
At Cafe Chairs Sydney we offer a wide range of comfy commercial-grade cafe seating, but don’t take our word for it! Instead why not stop by our Wetherill Park showroom and take a look first hand before you place an order. Remember when comfort is so important, you really can’t afford to take short cuts when it comes to your cafe furniture.