Creating Money-Making Cafeterias

If there’s one thing that’s certain for students in K-12, it’s that they love hanging out together. No matter where they are, if given a comfortable place to be together, they’ll stick around. More and more schools are creating more attractive, updated and comfortable areas on campus, and while the students might enjoy these spaces, the school doesn’t consider that there could be ways to generate additional dollars.

It’s true to say that not all renovated spaces on a school campus can generate revenue. A school cafeteria, however, is actually a place that can. Not only can a renovated school cafeteria reflect the school’s spirit and enhance the aesthetics of the campus, but it can increase a school’s revenue by encouraging students to stay and purchase more items throughout that time.

When schools go through a cafeteria renovation, it’s often because they want an updated, attractive and more accommodating space. That’s a rational reason to update a cafeteria, but how many of the schools understand that additional planning and design will make students want to linger, and, therefore, generate income?

Think of a coffee shop… a place that looks outdated, doesn’t have varied and comfortable seating or is lacking an aesthetically pleasing design and décor might function, but would you want to stay?

Modern coffee shops understand it’s necessary to have an updated space where customers want to work, chat with friends and experience a little get-away within their four walls. They understand that the more attractive and pleasant their shop is, customers will not only stay longer but they will also purchase more than their original order.

School cafeterias function the same way. When there is an inviting, student-focused and creatively designed room, they want to stay… and then they purchase more items from the cafeteria.

It all starts with a well-thought-out plan. When beginning the process of a cafeteria renovation, it’s Imperative that the renovation partner learns more about the school’s student body and is respectful of the feeling the school wants reflected in that space. An experienced and trusted business partner will discover the dynamics and interactions the students have, how often and where students currently linger and what’s lacking in their current cafeteria design and flow.

By analyzing what works and doesn’t work, what’s missing the mark and what’s on a school’s wish list, cafeteria design experts can start creating the ideal setting for the entire student body.

Palmer Hamilton’s expertise creates a complete environment for the school, not just updated seating. With Palmer Hamilton’s internal design company, PH Design, custom art will add personalization to the walls, the tables and the seating arrangements, reflecting the school’s spirit.

The cafeteria boasts the name of the school and mascot, inspiring school pride and unity. When students and faculty can come into a large space like a cafeteria but experience a sense that they are part of something bigger, that cafeteria renovation is doing more than just changing a space.

A welcoming cafeteria with cozy areas, comfortable seating and an environment that reflects school spirit, encourages students to stay on campus and spend money on-site. As schools plan for cafeteria renovations, they need to consider if they simply want to change the look of their space or if they want to change what it offers to the students and its potential for increased revenue.