By Max Jenvey of Oxxygen Marketing Partnership, a strategic management agency that delivers business acceleration processes and brand development within the foodservice, bakery and convenience retail sectors.

One of the greatest challenges facing the fresh bakery world is production versus waste. So how do you strike the right balance between quality, speed of service and a minimal credible display; not forgetting busy customers who mostly want to grab and go? This is also your greatest opportunity as over 50% of these food-to-go customers are visiting in-store bakeries within convenience stores or high street bakers at least twice a week (him!).

Our colleagues at him! also found out that 60% of these customers are female and19% of them are at-home mums who are looking for eat-in zones in cafés, bakeries and convenience stores. This is your golden ticket to increase their dwell time and average spend so what’s next?

First things first the seating area: the most important consideration is table size and layout, as customers might have buggies with them, but at the same time you need to make best use of the space. You need to measure the size of the area dedicated to seating and arrange an efficient number of seats (him! CTP shopper insights).

At-home mums or retired greys might only intend to sit down with a cup of coffee, but don’t have any budget in mind. You need to take full advantage of their mind-state and drive impulse to increase spend. Arrange your sweet pastries next to the coffee machine, as 30% of coffee customers are attracted by meal deals such as muffins, cakes and pastries (him! CTP shopper insights). Furthermore this is reflected across all sectors; from high street bakers to forecourt and café to convenience.

Ensure your point of sale is visually stimulating and appealing. Great product shots of sausage rolls, Cornish pasties and mouth-watering Danish strategically located around the seating area will influence future purchase decisions.

One cautionary note: make sure you send a member of staff out to tidy the seating area at least every 15 minutes as cleanliness ranks number two in terms of customer satisfaction