How Square Helped CuppaPug Increase its Transactions By 40%

Square products used by CuppaPug

What could be better than a cuppa in a charming, cosy cafe? How about that same cuppa in that same cafe with the company of some friendly, loving pugs? The combination of furry friends and tasty beverages makes for a unique customer experience. One that CuppaPug founders Aaron Carty and Matthew Pieterse are extremely passionate about.

With a thriving pug cafe in London and a new location set to open soon in Manchester, Aaron and Matthew have come a long way since starting out in May 2022. They have, however, been using Square since day one. We chatted to these personable pug dads to find out how Square helped them on their journey.

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Key challenges and how Square offered solutions

  • Complex booking system: CuppaPug needed a tool that could facilitate the kind of by-the-hour reservation system the duo needed. Square’s seamless integration allowed them to build their digital operations around their unique booking style. “Square was literally the only solution,” Aaron admitted to us, “we spent so much time and money trying to figure out other solutions. But Square was the only one that fit”.

  • Limited time and customer attention: Because customers pay for their time as well as their drinks, this creates a much more limited window in which to make sales. And with adorable pugs commanding much of the customers’ attention, the team needs to be proactive in facilitating drinks and food orders. As Aaron told us, “Our customers are only with us for 60 minutes and they are vastly distracted by the dogs for that time. So we want to be able to make sales. We’ve got to be really quick in getting in there, being able to get them to place orders and get that through to the bar to make and serve really quickly”.

  • New business: Aaron and Matthew have always been ambitious self-starters, working as performers and media producers long before CuppaPug opened its doors. However, the duo had not run a business of this kind previously and really valued the support and guidance that Square offered in their crucial early days and beyond.

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CuppaPug’s implementation and training journey

Square has been with CuppaPug since the start of its journey, and its easy integrations mean that the platform fits seamlessly with its atypical booking system. Moreover, the intuitive UI means that CuppaPug’s young team of digital natives was able to “pick up and play” instantly without the need for disruptive training.

“We do not have the time, resources or money to sit people down and do training sessions on how to use the software” Aaron told us, “So to be able to just give someone a terminal is so easy and so valuable to a business”.

The team estimated that Square POS’ simple and user-friendly interface saved between two and four hours per staff member in training and over £1,000 in lost revenue. Time and money that, like many small businesses, CuppaPug could not afford to lose.

Square’s impact on business operations

“Square is such a big part of our business. Everything runs through it”. With the support of the Square team, Aaron and Matthew used Square’s capabilities with tremendous success, resulting in some fantastic benefits for its business operations.

Customer experience

CuppaPug’s business model is based on its unique customer experience. Having paid for their time slot, no customer wants to experience bad service, no matter how adorable the pugs may be. Fortunately, the team used Square POS to create a seamless customer experience that ensures clients spend quality time enjoying delicious coffees, smoothies and cakes – all in the company of pugs.

The simplicity and portability of Square Terminal enable staff to quickly take customer orders and deliver them to the table swiftly and easily. That way, customers don’t waste time queuing at the bar when they could be fussing over all the adorable pugs.

What’s more, the team handles bookings and refunds directly through Square, offering greater flexibility for customers.

Using reporting to diversify the product offering

As well as food and drinks, CuppaPug sells an extremely popular selection of merchandise. Using Square’s advanced reporting tools, Aaron and Matthew were able to identify trends in customer preferences and expand their lines of merchandise accordingly. For instance, upon noticing their smaller t-shirt sizes were selling well, the duo launched a new line of kids-sized garments.

As more and more customers requested merchandise featuring the different resident pugs’ faces, the duo were able to deduce which pugs were the most popular. Although they did hasten to add that they would never tell the pugs.

Improved cash flow and liquidity

Square’s robust reporting features ensure that CuppaPug invests its capital in popular product lines that sell quickly and readily, ensuring consistent revenues while providing a strong foundation for healthy cash flow.

“Knowing that we don’t have to put so much money into a stock that won’t necessarily sell or will take a long time to sell, being able to look at the trends or what’s more popular, what’s not, and then only buy what we need to buy is invaluable”, Aaron told us. “That keeps our money in the bank, rather than sitting in stock where it might not sell for months at a time”.

And because Square allows access to funds received within 24 hours, the duo never have to worry about getting access to their money.

40% increase in transactions

By delivering an outstanding customer experience and diversifying their offering of drinks, snacks and merchandise, CuppaPug has enjoyed a substantial increase in revenue, with transactions increasing by 40% in the past 6 months. Plus, the business takes in consistent revenues, even during traditionally quiet times for the service industry.

This income boost combined with strong cash flow provides a strong basis for Aaron and Matthew to enact their ambitious plans for business growth, with a new CuppaPug location coming soon to Manchester.

We’re excited to stand alongside CuppaPug as their business journey continues. But what could we do for you? Get in touch today to see how Square’s suite of business solutions could help your business revolutionise its operations.

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