Factorial structure for independent coffee shops and cafes’ success factors: a UK study

Jacqueline Douglas*, Alexander Douglas, Michele Cano, David Moyes

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

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The main purposes of this paper were to identify the business success factors as perceived by independent cafes/coffee shop owners who have been in business for longer than two years and to identify the latent constructs of the various success factors affecting them.

A literature review identified 24 (manifest) variables frequently reported as success factors for SMEs Then an empirical survey of 81 independent coffee shop owners was conducted using a questionnaire structured around these variables. The responses were analysed using SPSS v25 to determine descriptive statistics and to conduct Exploratory Factor Analysis in order to structure the factors.

Results indicated that the top 3 critical success factors were: friendly staff, high standards of hygiene and good quality food. The Exploratory Factor Analysis resulted in a framework of 8 success factor constructs. The study therefore proposes 8 constructs for success, namely; “Support aspects”, “Staff aspects”, “Product/service aspects”, “Operations aspects”, “Business skills aspects”, “Financial aspects”, “Image aspects” and “Location aspects”. These constructs account for nearly 73% of the total variance in the data.

Practical implications

The factorial structure of the success factors presents themes for classifying success factors and can provide guidance to owners of coffee shops and researchers in that field who need to recognise and control them. Furthermore, the conceptual model developed from the exploratory factor analysis in this study can be further tested in order to validate the framework of construct and manifest variables.

The main limitation is the small sample size. A larger sample may provide more valid and reliable results.

This is the first paper to investigate the success factors for independent coffee shops and cafes and to develop a model of their factorial structure.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 22nd Excellence in Service International Conference
Subtitle of host publicationPerotis College, Thessaloniki (Greece), 29 and 30 August 2019
Place of PublicationItaly
Number of pages17
Publication statusPublished - 30 Sept 2019
EventThe 22nd Excellence in Services International Conference - Perrotis College, Thessaloniki, Greece
Duration: 29 Aug 201930 Aug 2019


ConferenceThe 22nd Excellence in Services International Conference
Internet address


  • Critical success factors
  • SMEs
  • Principle component analysis


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