Starbucks: A home away from home

starbucsksks.jpgStarbucks Coffee is everywhere. In Los Angeles alone, there are 137 locations, according to Statista. This makes it no surprise at all that Starbucks has been in the top three restaurants preferred by teens in all 14 of Piper Jaffray’s teen spending studies, which surveys teens in America. Additionally, in 12 out of these 14 studies, Starbucks has maintained the number one position. 

The immense popularity of this restaurant chain can be seen clearly in these statistics, but how has Starbucks been able to amass this success? The answer is simple, Starbucks reminds us of home. It is odd to wrap one’s brain around how a fast food chain could ever resemble anything close to a home, but Starbucks has done it. Its cozy atmosphere and rewarding qualities bring us back for more. 

“Within a whole week there are times when I spend up to 50 dollars on Starbucks depending on how many family members or friends come with me,” junior Karina Valencia said. 

Like Valencia, many tend to prefer the convenience of Starbucks to alternatives such as making coffee at home. According to “Business 2 Community,” the consumer psychology behind the appeal of Starbucks deals with three concepts: familiarity, experience, and personal reward. 

Many of us are comfortable with routines. Rather than deciding from the vast array of coffee shops that we might want to go to before work or school, we tend to choose one shop that we enjoy in order to save us the time of choosing a new one. Since Starbucks is the most popular coffee chain, it is the first that comes to mind when deciding on where to go. 

The overall experience of purchasing an item also plays a large role in why so many people choose Starbucks over other options. 

“Howard Shultz (Starbucks Founder) spent a lot of effort not only in the beverage itself but in the entire coffee buying experience. This is why Starbucks locations around the world consistently have a good atmosphere, indirect lighting, relaxing music in the background, great aromas, and friendly baristas,” Gerardo Dada said on “Business 2 Community.” 

The atmosphere that Starbucks provides allows many to feel at home. It is a space in which many can be found doing school work, studying for exams, or reading books. Making customers feel welcome and secure is key in marketing.

There is also the fact that many customers just need something to look forward to after a long day of working. When leaving work or school, many feel drained and in need of something to lift their spirits. Therefore, the appeal of ready-made coffee from Starbucks helps us feel instantly rewarded after a hard day. 

“Whenever I get out of school, I’m completely exhausted but I have so many AP classes that I have homework for and need caffeine to stay awake in order to finish it. That’s why I go to Starbucks so often, because it’s just convenient and is a nice thing to look forward to after school,” senior Aylin Sidon said.   

Another concept that is often overlooked is that Starbucks is extremely customizable. There is a menu from which customers can choose their coffee and tea, but the blend, amount of syrup, and other ingredients is something that customers can change depending on how they enjoy their coffee. 

“At other [coffee] places they go ‘Oh we can’t do that blended because it’s supposed to be like this’, but at Starbucks they say, ‘Okay if you want it like that, then we’ll make it like that,’” Valencia said. 

Despite costs, many loyal Starbucks customers remain satisfied, finding that spending money weekly on coffee is worth what they are getting in return.

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