Consumer taste preferences vary based on mood and time of day, but have you considered the larger forces influencing what people crave? The changing seasons have a direct effect on what individual consumers seek, with nearly 40 percent of consumers claiming their flavor preferences shift depending on the time of year. It's time to think fall!
It’s not so crazy when you think about it. Department stores and restaurants regularly rotate their offerings as the seasons change, and consumers have grown to anticipate, even expect this seasonal changeover. So, why not apply the same philosophy to your coffee counter?
Coffee Flavor Preference Changes with the Seasons
Though it may sound intuitive, adjusting hot beverage offerings to reflect seasonal preferences is something that can easily fall to the wayside as other priorities arise. But the value of offering seasonal coffee flavors cannot be undersold.
Consider the most anticipated seasonal offering in the coffee world – pumpkin spice. As cooler air and changing leaves settle in, you can literally hear the digital world anticipating this flavor. Consumers have made their preference for seasonal options well-known, and providing these options is a great opportunity to satisfy consumer needs while realizing profits. It’s a literal win-win.
The Best Coffee Flavors
The best coffee flavors and cappuccino flavors change throughout the year, and offering the right variety at the right time is the key to signaling consumer cravings and increasing convenience store sales.
Fall & Winter Coffee Flavors
As summer comes to its end, consumer tastes move to comfort and sweet treats. It’s no wonder the most popular cappuccino at this time is pumpkin spice, with apple strudel and cinnamon sticky bun as the other top coffee flavors. Peppermint and gingerbread flavors pick up speed right after Halloween and stay strong through the New Year. When New Year’s resolutions start, lighter flavors with cinnamon notes become more popular.
Spring & Summer Coffee Flavors
Just before St. Patrick’s Day, coffee drinkers get into the spirit of the season with Irish crème flavored coffees, and, by mid-April, expect fruit flavors to make their way back to your coffee counter. Blueberry cobbler is a welcoming flavor combination that puts consumers back in the mood for sunshine and the upcoming summer. Mid-summer is a perfect time to drink s’mores-flavored cappuccinos and reminisce about bonfires and the beach.
Adding Flavors to Coffee
These flavors are successful when they’re served in their corresponding season because consumers associate with the changing seasons even more than they may be aware of. Just imagine a s’mores cappuccino in the dead of winter or a pumpkin spice coffee in May to see the contrast. It just doesn't make sense.
Offering flavored coffees and cappuccino isn’t the only way to provide seasonal flavors to consumers. There are multiple ways you can offer flavor options to your patrons. By including creamers, syrups, and toppings, consumers can more closely craft the hot beverage of their choosing. It's all about offering variety.
Consumers are accustomed to the seasonal rotation of goods and services, even if they’re not totally aware of it. When something is offered on a limited time basis, it can create a sense of urgency or desire within consumers as well as helping business owners maintain a fresh, relevant image. Including seasonal offerings along with your assortment of coffee flavors is a winning strategy for any convenience store.