Battle of the boroughs: south west London coffee shops outselling competitors

Independent coffee shops in south west London are outselling competitors in almost all other areas across the capital.

Data from Paymentsense, a fintech company specialising in small business card payments, revealed that between 6 January and 17 February, coffee drinkers spent £11.03 on average in small businesses in Croydon, Kingston upon Thames, Lambeth, Merton, Richmond upon Thames, Sutton, and Wandsworth.

This was the second highest overall, but 73p less than in the east of London, where the boroughs of Newham, Barking and Dagenham, Waltham Forest, Tower Hamlets, Hackney, Havering, and Redbridge averaged 11.76.

Central areas fared the worst, with west-central London coming bottom of the list at an average of £8.70 per sale.

These figures suggest that consumers are supporting more small businesses on the outskirts of central London. 

Jon Knott, Head of Customer Insights at Paymentsense, advised small businesses to seize this moment and pivot toward takeaway offerings while most of the hospitality sector still remains shut. 

He said: “Many people are now opting for walks, which provides cafes and coffee shops an opportunity to cater for their local residents and those new visitors who have walked to a new borough to explore a new setting. 

“With people spending less on commuting and eating out, there’s a chance that Londoners are spending even more on their coffee purchases, as a small luxury to keep spirits high.”

Frank, a barista at Louie Louie cafe in south London, has noticed a recent uptake in sales.

“We’ve been persistently busy throughout this whole lockdown and definitely had an increase in sales with coffee,” he said. 

“Before technically the sales were higher, because we were selling hot food and other things, but on just coffee alone we’ve been able to stay afloat, which is quite telling.

“We’ve got a sister venue in Burgess Park too and everyone’s been going on walks to the park, so the cafe is the one exciting thing or the most exciting thing about a park visit.”

Related Articles