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How much to charge?!

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
This is history, but I had a client who wanted a Minnie Mouse cake for her twin girl's first birthday. She also wanted smash cakes to go along with his! The cake she sent me was two tiered; two 3" high 10" round cakes and two 3" high 8" round cakes. They are covered in buttercream but all fondant decorations including the whole bottom zebra print, Minnie ears, bows, polka dots, etc. I priced it out to be $135? She never messaged me again after I sent two questioning her. Today, a lady was asking where to get a particular look of a cake made and many recommended me, she replies to that person to go to another local lady in town because that is where she got her zebra cake from and she was "reasonably priced." It makes me upset because I have not had this problem before. What to y'all think?! The link to the cake is :http://yummytreatsbyyane.blogspot.com/2011/04/minni-zebra.html?m=1
Please take a look! Keep in mind the bottom has zebra print!
Thanks,
shelby icon_wink.gif
post #2 of 17

I think that you were definitely reasonably priced.  For all of that work, you were charging less than two dollars a serving.  I think you could have even gone higher because of the 3 inch cake layers.  People have budgets of what they want to spend in their head, which is fine, but things cost what they cost.  So if they want to stick to their budget, they just can't get your cake.  It's not fair for them to think that you are overpriced and not that you just don't fit into their budget.

post #3 of 17

Please also read other recent posts about pricing. If you are being undercut, then somebody else is charging less than minimum wage and that is as much a violation as unsanitary food.

 

NEVER NEVER let yourself be paid less than you are worth.

post #4 of 17

"reasonably priced" translates to "Super cheap and so am I."

post #5 of 17
Putting aside the copyright issue, I don't think $135 was a reasonable price, something closer to the $300 range would have been more reasonable.
post #6 of 17
I use a serving chart that is a cross between Wilton and Earlene, and a 10" and 8" cakes,4" high serve at least 52 people, so the $135 price tag is very cheap. Perhaps she just needed to serve 20 or so, and ordered a huge cake, having no idea of the servings? And then, the other lady sold her a much smaller cake?

I bring this up because I sell a lot of birthday cakes, and most of them are between 20-40 .servings, with only a very few serving as much
Beginners, be sure to parrot advice and get your post count up as fast as you can. After all, it's not what you know, it's what people THINK you know.
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Beginners, be sure to parrot advice and get your post count up as fast as you can. After all, it's not what you know, it's what people THINK you know.
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post #7 of 17

I think your price was too low for all that work.   I would have charged about  $240 give or take.    Don't worry about that customer she isn't worth you time.   Like BakingIrene said "Never let yourself be paid less than your worth!"

 

I get inquires and when I price out their cake I never hear back from them.  I don't worry about it.

 

Take Care 

 

MsGF

Quinte West, Ontario, Canada   www.TeriLovesCake.ca   Strictly Wheat & Gluten-Free         

 

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Quinte West, Ontario, Canada   www.TeriLovesCake.ca   Strictly Wheat & Gluten-Free         

 

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post #8 of 17

In my experience, people see a cake they want but do not understand the actual number of servings the cake provides.  So when a bakery gives a price serving price x the number of servings the picture they sent you provides = sticker shock from the customer.

 

It is important to ask the customer how many servings they need.  Then give suggestions:

1. you can have the exact cake in the picture for $309 (what I would have charged for a cake that size with fondant decorations) but you will have a lot of cake left over since you only need 20 servings (or whatever the actual serving amount she needs).

 

2. I can make you a 1 tier cake that feeds X (number of servings she really needs for $X.  (depending on how many servings she needs, her only option from me may be a single tier cake because I hate icing and stacking tiny tiers)

 

3. You can tell me your budget and I will let you know what I can do for you within that price range.  (now, if she says her budget is $20 then direct her to walmart, giant eagle, publix, sam's club....)

 

 

Pick a price and stick with it.  Put that price on your website, FB and anywhere else you can.  That will help weed out people that either can't afford you or don't want to spend that much on cake.

"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 #9 of 17

I thought you were actually cheap for all the work and detail that goes into the cake. There are many kinds of people and sometimes they appreciate the work and sometimes they just want a cake for the price they want. Trust me one prospect will think its too high but two more will come and appreciate the work. It's ok though we just have to brush your shoulders off and keep baking...lol...

 

Quote:
"The good things in life will always make me smile...I <3 Cake"

 

 

"HAPPY HOLIDAYS TO ALL!!!"

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Quote:
"The good things in life will always make me smile...I <3 Cake"

 

 

"HAPPY HOLIDAYS TO ALL!!!"

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post #10 of 17
Help i Need Quick Response cake going out today! I think I'm underpricing my work but afraid I will loose business if I raise my prices. I'm doing a two tier cake with fondant decorations! Bottom layer is 10" w/buttercream icing and a pacman scene in fondant, top tier is a 4" rubrics cube iced in buttercream wfondant decorations then for the topper I made a cassette tape out73962231 of fondant and added small fondant pacman and 4 little goblins on wires What would be a fair price for this cake?? The cake is similar to these two cakes put together

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post #11 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetangeljake View Post

Help i Need Quick Response cake going out today! I think I'm underpricing my work but afraid I will loose business if I raise my prices. I'm doing a two tier cake with fondant decorations! Bottom layer is 10" w/buttercream icing and a pacman scene in fondant, top tier is a 4" rubrics cube iced in buttercream wfondant decorations then for the topper I made a cassette tape out73962231 of fondant and added small fondant pacman and 4 little goblins on wires What would be a fair price for this cake?? The cake is similar to these two cakes put together

[IMG]

 

Personally, I would charge $214 for a tiered cake those sizes iced in buttercream with fondant decorations.

 

Bumping your price will affect your clients. Some won't be able to now afford you, but if your skills are good (I didn't look to see if you have posted any pictures) then you will draw in new clients with a higher budget.

 

In October I bumped my prices up $1/serving.  I am now $4/serving for buttercream and $4.50/serving for fondant.  I am booking wedding cakes (what I mostly do) at the same pace as before.  Only now I am getting more money for the same amount of work.

"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 #12 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetangeljake View Post

Help i Need Quick Response cake going out today! I think I'm underpricing my work but afraid I will loose business if I raise my prices. ... What would be a fair price for this cake??
The cake is going out today and you haven't set a price for it yet?
post #13 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by jason_kraft View Post


The cake is going out today and you haven't set a price for it yet?


That's what I thought, too, when I read this!

IF this is the case then, frankly you need to make a lot of changes to the way you do business.

 

What are you going to do when the customer comes to get the cake or you deliver it?  Let them name their own price?  Or if you are just now giving them the price when they get the cake - what are you going to do when they say "Oh I wasn't expecting it to be so much money!  I only have $x." 

 

The customer should have been given a price as soon as you found out how many servings the cake was going to be and the details for the cake. 

Tact is telling someone where to go so nicely they can't wait to take the trip!
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Tact is telling someone where to go so nicely they can't wait to take the trip!
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post #14 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by cakesbycathy View Post


That's what I thought, too, when I read this!

IF this is the case then, frankly you need to make a lot of changes to the way you do business.

 

What are you going to do when the customer comes to get the cake or you deliver it?  Let them name their own price?  Or if you are just now giving them the price when they get the cake - what are you going to do when they say "Oh I wasn't expecting it to be so much money!  I only have $x." 

 

The customer should have been given a price as soon as you found out how many servings the cake was going to be and the details for the cake. 

Oh my God, yes...

post #15 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetangeljake View Post

What would be a fair price for this cake?? 

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Fair price? Probably the $20 the customer will be handing you. :(

"I can do that, because this is my sandbox and I've got the bullsh*% shovel." ~Dianne Sylvan, Author and Lunatic
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
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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
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
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