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How often do you all have no shows for cake tastings?

post #1 of 29
Thread Starter 
I had a wedding cake tasting set up today but they never showed up and were not answering their phone. I charge for my tastings but have always collected at the tasting. I did not have any batter frozen for the flavors they wanted to try so I actually had to make them up which took time and money. I even made up two sugar orchids on a branch because they were wanting them on their cake so I wanted to give them a display of my work. So, in other words, I wasted about four hours of time and some money on a no show. It was to have been a pretty large wedding, too.

How do you all handle this? Keep calling the number? Write them a letter (I do have their address), or just wait to see if they call me back? Meanwhile, I put the cake samples in the freezer just in case it gets set up again.

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Creating works of art every chance I get! And yes, I am licensed, permitted, inspected and insured! Check out my website!

 

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post #2 of 29
It's pretty rare for me, but it happens from time to time. At one point I tried to collect the consult fee when they booked it but that did NOT go over well! As far as the wasted samples, that's part of the cost of doing business. For the flowers, you can still use them for a future order hopefully.

Wen someone doesn't shop up for me I leave a "sweet" message or two saying hey let me know if you're having trouble finding the place and let me know if you'd like to reschedule. If they legitimately forgot, I don't want them so embarrassed that they don't rebook. If they deliberately stood me up, well I can't make them come in.
post #3 of 29
The freezer is your best solution right now. I have an assortment of cupcakes in an airtight cake box since May and they are still fresh. Every week or two I take them out and sample to see how long cupcakes can last in the freezer with the same great quality.

Unfortunately, there will always be no shows in this business. You can try following up with them tomorrow and see if they would like to re-schedule. If they have a good reason for not showing or calling you, then you can understand. I have done this before but if on the 2nd schedule date they don't show and I can't reach them via phone, my assistance with their cake ends.

I have to admit, on one occasion a bride never showed till over an hour later and I did tell her I wasn't able to help her with her wedding cake. Her wedding was 3 weeks away and she wasn't taking my calls to say she was running late and pretty much lied and said all calls to me weren't going through. Bear in mind I called her several times after she said she was on her way and she never answered or called back till over an hour later. I nearly missed a delivery.
post #4 of 29
I haven't had any no-shows yet, but then again we've only been in business for three months and haven't done a wedding cake yet (several large party cakes though). I read that Pink Cake Box requires a credit card to reserve the booking appointment and that if someone misses an appointment or cancels less than a week before, they won't refund the booking fee. It may sound "harsh" but it can prevent losing time and money.

I actually worked for a plastic surgeon in high school, and we took so much information when a patient booked a consultation, that we were able to charge them cancellation fees. If they miss an appointment, that could have been another patient (or in our business, customer) that would have kept their appointment.
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post #5 of 29
I would require a tasting fee prior to the tasting date and I would charge a fee for no show.
post #6 of 29
I don't do private tastings. The first time I had a no show, I'd blow a gasket. I had a tasting last weekend where 9 couples were scheduled to attend. It was a mix of people who were already booked with me for their upcoming event and people still shopping. One couple did not show. Meh, didn't even notice it.
"I can do that, because this is my sandbox and I've got the bullsh*% shovel." ~Dianne Sylvan, Author and Lunatic
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"I can do that, because this is my sandbox and I've got the bullsh*% shovel." ~Dianne Sylvan, Author and Lunatic
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Birthday Cakes
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post #7 of 29
None since I started requiring a credit card # to secure their appointment! Seriously, I have found that when people have a financial stake in something they are much more committed to it. Odd are your doctor or dentist does the same thing. Miss your appt? That'll be $40 please.
post #8 of 29
Maaaan I just had a no show yesterday! I do my cake tastings free of charge, since I book a very high percentage of cakes consulted on, but lately a few of these no shows is making me reconsider a tasting fee... One woman scheduled a tasting, didnt show. We called her just before we closed that day, and she said "Oh, Ive been in the hospital since last night because I was dehydrated." Hate to sound insincere, but if you were there since last night you should've called! BUT, feeling bad for her we rescheduled to the next week. SHE MISSED IT AGAIN!!!! We didnt call her this time, but she called us a few days later to reschedule, and we told her since we wasted 2 tasting appts., she needed to pay a tasting fee. The story goes on from there, but in summation she tried to manipulate us by giving my wife and I different stories... Im thinking the consult fee might help these situations....
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Wiley Saccheri
Sublime Cake Design

Ultimate Cake Off Assistant Episodes 108 and 209!
Go Winbeckler Team!
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post #9 of 29
I do all my tastings on one day, and I usually schedule between 6-10 couples. I generally have one or two not show up. I don't charge for tastings, and I don't bother to contact people if they don't show.
post #10 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by cupadeecakes

None since I started requiring a credit card # to secure their appointment! Seriously, I have found that when people have a financial stake in something they are much more committed to it. Odd are your doctor or dentist does the same thing. Miss your appt? That'll be $40 please.



Interesting. I never thought about asking someone for their credit card number but this is smart business-sense. Great info here. Do you use some online site to make the charge to the credit card to secure the appointment before they come? Not familiar with this.
post #11 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by cupadeecakes

None since I started requiring a credit card # to secure their appointment! Seriously, I have found that when people have a financial stake in something they are much more committed to it. Odd are your doctor or dentist does the same thing. Miss your appt? That'll be $40 please.



cupadeecakes how does this work? Do you go ahead and process the transaction on the day of the tasting whether they come or not?
post #12 of 29
In my area it is uncommon to charge for a tasting; so my tastings are free too. I have had 3 no shows in 4 years - so I am too worried about.

If the bride schedules her appointment more than 3 days I always call her the day before the tasting to confirm the appointment and go over requirements again (no more than 3 people, bring color samples, pictures of cakes she likes...).

I don't allow a bride to pick the flavors/fillings for the tasting. She gets what I have. If the bride asks I explain that to keep cost down I use what I have here, but if there is something specific to let me know and between now and her appointment if I have an order to that, I will save some for her tasting.
"who says you can't have your cake and eat it too?"
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"who says you can't have your cake and eat it too?"
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post #13 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by vgcea

Quote:
Originally Posted by cupadeecakes

None since I started requiring a credit card # to secure their appointment! Seriously, I have found that when people have a financial stake in something they are much more committed to it. Odd are your doctor or dentist does the same thing. Miss your appt? That'll be $40 please.



cupadeecakes how does this work? Do you go ahead and process the transaction on the day of the tasting whether they come or not?



Sorry to drop the thread, but I have been SUPER busy this week. My tastings are free, but I inform the client that there is a "no-show" free that is secured with a credit card. I get the credit card # and only charge it if they don't show up. I do have a merchant account setup through QuickBooks that allows me to take CC payments.
post #14 of 29
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post #15 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by cupadeecakes

Quote:
Originally Posted by vgcea

Quote:
Originally Posted by cupadeecakes

None since I started requiring a credit card # to secure their appointment! Seriously, I have found that when people have a financial stake in something they are much more committed to it. Odd are your doctor or dentist does the same thing. Miss your appt? That'll be $40 please.



cupadeecakes how does this work? Do you go ahead and process the transaction on the day of the tasting whether they come or not?



Sorry to drop the thread, but I have been SUPER busy this week. My tastings are free, but I inform the client that there is a "no-show" free that is secured with a credit card. I get the credit card # and only charge it if they don't show up. I do have a merchant account setup through QuickBooks that allows me to take CC payments.



Thank you!
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