Increase Sales Through Retail Coffee and Seasonal Drink Trends

Is your New Year’s Resolution to increase sales and profitability in 2015? We’re here to help.

Offer Retail Coffee

money-bean-guy2As we have said before, a majority of the coffee business remains in the home, where most people are brewing up their first coffee of the day. Providing customers with high-quality specialty coffee that they can take home with them for their first cup of the day will not only increase the profitability of your store, but it will increase customer loyalty as well. A bag of coffee bought from your store will remind customers of the type of product you provide and will keep them coming back to their favorite local spot again and again. Coffee is a popular gift item and an appealing retail bag will increase recognition of your store.

Stockton Graham & Co. has all of the materials necessary to help you bring a thriving retail coffee program to your store. All of our coffees can come prepackaged in six count, 12 oz. or 16 oz. retail bags, so you don’t have to do a thing! We can even help you create your own private label to promote your store on your custom bags. Another option is to set up bins that put your freshly roasted beans on display. This affordable option allows your staff to have a personal moment with customers as they fill the bag and hand it off.

Stay On Trend

Another great way to meet your sales goals for 2015 is with seasonal options that cater to consumer trends. Stockton Graham & Co. monitors the specialty beverage industry to inform our customers of what seasonal products to offer, and we can help you set up a limited time offer program to keep your menu fresh and exciting.

For example, as we all ring in the New Year with health centered resolutions, having sugar-free syrups, smoothies and snack options like KIND Bars and oatmeal are a great way to stay on trend and give sales a little boost. Sugar-free alternatives to the popular flavors like vanilla, caramel and hazelnut give those health conscious customers an indulgent treat without the calories or guilt. Smoothies like, Dr. Smoothie purees, are packed full of nutrients to power through the day and stick to health goals. KIND Bars and oatmeal are great options for a coffee shop to bring in because they are shelf-stable, healthy and a customer favorite.

For more information about seasonal trends or to talk to our team about retail coffee, give us a call at 800 835 5943.

New Year’s Promotions for your Coffee Shop

New Year’s can be an easily overlooked holiday with all of the excitement of Christmas ending. As a coffee shop owner, it is very important to stay on top of promotions this time of year, so you don’t see post holiday sales drop. Drops in sales can be related to the annual influx of dieting or personal financial budgets brought on by New Year’s resolutions. This year, most holiday sales may also be impacted by the expiration of the payroll tax credit, which may put further pressure on customer spending. By having New Year’s events and promotions, you can keep your sales level up until the time when resolutions take affect.

Offering more health conscious menu items is a profitable idea to help your customers keep their resolutions. Read our blog on adding these products to your store. It can be as easy as supplementing your normal syrups for sugar-free and offering soy or almond milk choices. If you do make these little changes, always let your customers know about them by having signage promoting your new options, and don’t forget social media. Stockton Graham & Co’s Thom Swain says, “Keeping your barista in the know can go even further than signage, discounts or coupons. They know the customers and can suggest sugar-options to save upwards of 200 calories, to those wishing to “cut back” this time of year.”  You will be helping your customer keep their resolution and drawing in new customers interested in your healthier options. It’s also a great idea to plan an open house night where you showcase your new menu items and let customers sample them.

Try targeting local gyms with your new healthier items. Gym-goers love smoothies after their workouts to replenish their electrolytes, so let your shop be the place they refuel. Talk to the manager about hanging signs or flyers where their customers can see or having special discounts for their members. They will enjoy being able to give their members something special, and you will enjoy their members becoming patrons of your shop! If they have an open house or special event, see if you can set up a sampling table for your coffee or smoothies. You could do a raffle for 4 months free gym membership from your shop, every time they purchase a specialty beverage their name goes into the pot. Also, consider adding supplements to your smoothies or Frappes. Whey protein and energy boosts are just a few of the options you can include for an extra price to help the healthy conscious get their energy back.

Another idea is to have a special “happy hour” on December 31st with promotions on coffee to help people make it to midnight for the ball drop. For example buy one latte get an extra espresso shot for free, doubling the caffeine so they can celebrate the New Year right!

It’s another year to sell and promote specialty coffee and beverages, so have fun with your ideas, and we at Stockton Graham & Co. will keep offering more tips! We wish you and your business the best in the New Year!

ENERGIZE Your Sales with Torani Infused Red Bull

Your customers are looking beyond coffee to meet their energy needs.

-Energy drink sales are up 9% and are projected to almost double in size over the next 5 years
-Adults 18-34 are the biggest consumers of energy drinks and they are looking for a refreshing, non-coffee energy pick-me-up change of pace
-These young adults most often visit convenience stores to get energy drinks

Offer the infused Torani and Red Bull Energy Drink program to drive increased visits and profits.

-It’s an innovative drink option that commands a premium menu price
-Offers something truly different to the consumer that they can’t get anywhere else
-Appeals to non-coffee drinkers and younger consumers

Torani and Red Bull Energy Drink Infusions are easy to make and profitable to serve.

-Two innovative ways to serve, over ice or frozen.

-Strawberry, Raspberry, Cherry, Watermelon
-Get creative with: Green Apple, Cherry Lime and Pomegranate
-For consumers looking for a lighter option, use Torani Sugar Free syrup and Red Bull Sugarfree

-Something new and delicious they can’t find anywhere else
-Lets them customize their Red Bull Energy Drink a new way every day
-Gives non-coffee drinkers a reason to come back later in the day

-Highly profitable
-Easy to execute
-Builds your afternoon business

-Order the Torani flavors you need from Stockton Graham & Co.
-Contact your customer care associate at (800) 835-5943 to find out how you can receive your FREE merchandising kit from Red Bull

We’ll be posting recipes next week!


Tips to combat diet resolutions

One of the most popular New Year’s Resolutions is to lose weight. Visit a gym during January – it’s always packed during peak hours. Come back in February and some of the crowd is gone. Come back in March and it’s back to business as usual – the crowds and waits for equipment are gone.

Because some of the higher-margin beverages your business offers are indulgences, you will see people steering away from treating themselves. This temporary switch from a flavored latte with whipped cream to a regular drip coffee will negatively impact your bottom line, if you let it. Instead of seeing margins shrink for two months, market your business as the place to get a guilt-free reward!

Keep these concepts in mind and look to do more during what is considered a slower time for business:

-Sugar-free syrups & sauces. Many of the basic syrup flavors are available in sugar-free varieties. Pair that with no added whipped cream and skim milk, and you cut out much of the caloric content, along with the fat.

-Nutrient supplements. We carry workout-boosting nutrient supplements that are high margin and require very little overhead.

-“Lite” & “skinny” base mixes. Frappe options are available without added sugar, containing a lower calorie count, etc. Call (800) 835-5943 to see all your options!

Put up signage and point-of-sale material now. Make sure your customers know they can have other options, too.

Mike Adams
Stockton Graham & Co.

Dear Joe,

Dear Joe,
Creating holiday oriented drinks was a breeze, but I always have a large ebb in sales following the holidays. What can I do to make sure I begin the year with a bang?

Stuart Artois

Dear Stuart,

The holidays always help to boost coffee sales at the end of the year, but many cafe owners get bogged down with the volume of customers, and fail to look beyond the end of the year. To compound this effect, many folks begin the new year with smaller wallets and the dreaded New Years Resolutions. Not to worry, these resolutions will quickly fade away, but for the first few weeks of the year sales will go down.

The best way to combat this effect is to begin promoting sugar free syrups early. Make a point to inform customers when their beverage is sugar free. This will keep your customers focused on the holidays but aware of the healthy aspects of your cafe. Simple reminders that your coffee and smoothies are healthy will keep your cafe off of the “bad habits” list. The trick is to make sure that you aren’t part of someone’s resolution before they even consider their plans for the new year. There isn’t much you can do about post-holiday debt, but pushing sugar-free and healthy options will attract resolution oriented customers.

Yours in coffee,

Josephius A. Graham
Stockton Graham & Co.

Sugar-Free Almond Joy Italian Soda


  • 1/2 oz DaVinci Gourmet Coconut Sugar-Free Syrup
  • 1 oz DaVinci Gourmet Chocolate Sugar-Free Syrup
  • 1/2 oz DaVinci Gourmet Almond Sugar-Free Syrup
  • ice
  • sparkling water or club soda
  • 1 oz Half and Half (optional)


Fill a 16 oz glass 3/4 full of ice. Cover ice with sparkling water and add other ingredients. Mix well.


One 16-ounce serving.

Recipe provided by DaVinci Gourmet.

Mike Adams
Stockton Graham & Co.

Recipes that will make for a Happy New Year

Here’s a little help for your customers’ New Years Resolutions from Stockton Graham & Co. We hope these recipes for seasonal specialty beverages will be a great reference to help make the season special for you and your customers.  Order the DaVinci Gourmet, Monin and Torani products mentioned in the recipes below by calling 800-835-5943. Look for upcoming posts with more recipes for St. Patty’s Day!

Skinny Snowman Latte
1 oz Monin White Chocolate Sugar-Free syrup
¾ oz Monin Almond Sugar-Free syrup
2 shots espresso
Steamed milk

Directions: combine Monin White Chocolate Sugar-Free syrup, Monin Almond Sugar-Free syrup and espresso in cup.  Stir while filling with steamed milk.  Garnish with milk froth and slivered almonds

Sugar-Free Raspberry Mocha
1/2 oz. DaVinci Gourmet Raspberry Sugar-Free Syrup
1/2 oz DaVinci Gourmet Chocolate Sugar-Free Syrup
1 shot SGC Espresso Milano
steamed milk

Directions: Combine ingredients in cup.  Mix well.

Torani Skinny Divinity Latte
1 Tbsp. Torani Sugar-Free Caramel syrup
1 Tbsp. Torani Sugar-Free Hazelnut syrup
1/4 cup SGC Midnight Lotus Espresso
1 cup nonfat milk

Directions: Steam milk and syrup together. Pour heated, flavored milk into a tall glass and add  espresso. Spoon a thin layer of foamed milk over top of beverage.