You have been thinking about the ideal business to start and you have decided that you want to Start your own Cyber cafe business with a maximum budget of $1000. Well, in this article I will be elaborating more on what you need to get your cyber cafe running, what each of the requirements will cost and finally how to setup the cyber cafe (Internet cafe) itself, both the hardware and software configurations. If this sounds like what you were looking for, then read on.
What are the Success Factors in a Cyber Cafe business
Here are a few things you should take keen note of before diving into this business venture. Every successful cyber business out there has to take note of this;
- Location: The key to the success of a cyber business is based on where it is located. You may want to consider locating it along a busy street to attract walk-in customers or close to a learning institution such as colleges and universities.
- Internet Speed: I recommend you hook your cyber cafe up with a good reliable internet connection that can support video streaming without buffering. Speeds of between 2mbps and 5mbps are recommended. Although an unmetered connection is preferred, you can still manage a cyber with a metered internet plan.
- Offer a wide range of services: Do not only rely on the revenue from surfing the net as it has been the tradition in many cyber cafes. You can offer other services such as generating and filing online application forms, making cards, printing, Photo printing, binding, scanning documents, photocopying, lamination, and typesetting. You can as well add some soft drinks and snacks at a later date.
What are the Requirements to start your own cyber cafe business?
Let’s now get a little further into what you will be needing to get your cyber cafe on its feet. Remember that our aim is to get your cyber cafe started with a maximum budget $1000 or even less. The list below only entails the main components of a cyber cafe;
- Desktop Computers
- Binding Machine
- Lamination Machine
- Network Switch (TP link)
- CyberCafePro software.(free download)
How much will it cost to start the cyber cafe business?
As I mentioned earlier, the above are the main requirements to start a cyber and of cause there are other ones which I will mention later. Let me just clarify that we will be setting up a cyber cafe of just 4 client computers and one server computer.
- Desktop Computers: We recommend you get HP computers (known to last longer) with at least 2GB RAM each. You can easily get a full complete HP desktop computer for $100 a piece making it $500 for five of them.
- Printer: You nee an all in one printer that can print (color printing), photocopy and scan too. We recommend the Epson Px660 printer as it can do all this. It is a little expensive but it is worth it. You can also print photos for customers. You can get this printer for about $200.
- Binding machine: This is not as expensive as the above two. There is no preference for this and you can acquire a binding machine for about $35.
- Lamination machine: Like the binding machine, the lamination machine is not as expensive. It can be acquired at about $45
- A network switch(TP Link): Network switch is what will help you connect the client computers to the main computer and the printer too. We will explain the connection later on. You need to have the TP link with at least 8-pots. This type can be bought at about $10.
We are now at $790 and everything is pretty much set up. Except for a few more details such as the housing, electric and internet (LAN) cables, furniture, rent, license among others. The costs for these items differ from country to country. With the $210 left in our budget, we can slide these things in. I would recommend you start slow, do not go for the fanciest furniture as this may take so much of your little budget. Let’s now get into the nitty gritty’s of setting up the cyber cafe, connecting these appliances above and later configuring cyber pro client software.
How to set up Cyber Cafe:
You now have the requirements mentioned above. I assume that you have found the right spot and that the furniture, including the client booths and server desk, are all set. You have the four client computers set up on the desks and the main server computer too. Now with your internet cables or popularly known as LAN cables, let’s get the computers and the Printer talking to each other and to the internet too. The connection will follow the schematic below although not in totality.
Connecting computers and Printer in a Cyber Cafe
I will make it as simple as it can be. Connect all the four client computers and the Main server computer to the Network switch or the TP link using the network cables or the LAN cables. You also need to connect the Epson px660 printer to the same network on the TP-link so that it can communicate to all the computers in the network. You will then have to install the printer to every computer in the network so that you are able to print from every client station and the main server too. In the schematic above, there is a firewall to protect clients from online havoc, we all know there is. In case you are confused about this, you can simply make sure that your computers have antivirus installed, up to date and always on.
Let’s talk the internet connection now. You have the computers on the same network and if you have the internet on the main server, make it shareable, then the rest of the client computers will have internet access. From the simplest of devices, one can choose to simply plug in a 3G or 4G modem into the main server computer and it will serve the other clients. Alternatively, some d-link or TP-link devices have internet support. You just have to plug the network cable into the network switch and you are done.
Security is key for any internet base services. We have mentioned it above and the need for a firewall and antivirus. The security can be tightened further in the security settings of your network router. You can contact your network provider for further explanation.
Configuring CyberCafePro Free Internet Cafe Software
CyberCafe Pro is a very powerful user time management base application/server for internet cafe base business. It’s a server/client base system. Download and install the two major components of this application which are;
- Cybercafe pro Server – (Main Control Station.): Install this module to the computer which will be used as the front-desk or Main Control Station. IT can be Windows 7/Vista/XP/2003.
- Cybercafe pro Client: Install this module to ALL the computers which will be used by customers. Upon installation, it will automatically detect CCP Server running on the LAN. Otherwise, you can manually set it using CCP Client application.
Note: Please install the CyberCafe Pro Server before the CyberCafe Pro Client — and install Client software on computers other than the Server
The configuration process is not as hectic. Only focuses on the server computer. Check out the installation and configuration procedures here.
Other services you can offer in the internet cafe
Let me just mention a few of the things you can run smoothly in your internet cafe. This is ideas for expansion in case you have more space and resources;
- Add video gaming.
- Add movie shop.
- Windows OS installation
- Phone flashing
- Logo Design
- Web design.
You can hire the right personnel for the additional services if you personally don’t have the expertise. The opportunities are limitless in this field and they are as many as your imaginations can think of.
Once set up, you are good to go. Test to make sure everything is working fine then get to the business side of this venture, advertise, create awareness and get people to your internet cafe. Do not sit back and watch your dreams of owning an internet cafe go down the drain. Stand strong and get it started now. Start slow and make it bigger with time. Good luck.