Items in a giftware / coffee shop
I need to research the retail section's slow moving performance in a trendy cafe on a funky shopping strip. So far, I believe it is due to both the prevalence of giftware shops in the neighbourhood, and the unfocused selection of item for sale.
What kind of items would YOU buy from an upmarket cafe?
Reusable coffee mugs/cups.
Impulse buy snacks in single serving packages.
If the area is over saturated, then unique goods may be best, possibly jewelry/paintings/crafts by local artists.
I've purchased three BeeHouse teapots from a local cafe. I've also seen some gorgeous Japanese cast iron teapots in cafes, and those jewel colored glass teacups with metal bases. Basically anything a bit eclectic will catch my eye. However, if there are other shops in the area that sell similar things, a cafe is probably better off selling comestibles, like nicely boxed teas or upscale jams, cookies, honey, etc.
I would be unlikely to buy anything non-food related from a cafe, simply because I would likely enter the cafe only if I had food on the brain. Therefore, unique glass or tableware, kitchen gadgets, high-end coffee and tea, etc., might do well. I would also think jars/bags of the cafe's most popular items would sell well - if they make their own condiments or cookies in house, for instance.
"Limit 2 per Customer" Has to be specific to the cafe'. Syrups in 8 to 12 OZ. bottles. Jams and jellies locally sourced as used. Prices that undercut competition.
Offering perishable goods such as flowers as usually a money pit.
Absolutely unique to the area food-related gifts. I'd say artisan made candy, jams, honey, salts and peppers. Printed paper napkins and candles, but unique. Handmade aprons and napkin sets. I like the idea of teapots, teas, locally roasted coffees, special vanilla. If there is a local potter, honey pots, handleless teacups, teapots, coasters, spoon rests, bowls. If there is a local woodworker, then small cutting and bread boards.
I wouldn't carry anything too functional. Gift stores usually have fancier and less utilitarian ware.