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Opinions on my new business plan please!

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

Hey all,

So I think I've decided to change some stuff around with my bakery. As of now, I have a little store front in a very small town. I'll break it down..

 

Currently:

I'm open Tuesday thru Saturday from 730-2:00. closed sun and mon, I sell pastries, cinnamon rolls, cookies, etc..things like that on a daily basis. since there isn't a ton of traffic town, once its all gone, its gone. if I get to close a little early bc I sold out, then cool. Cakes and cupcakes are all special order. Wedding cakes are my passion and have been slowly picking up. Weekends when I have a lots of special orders plus the regular load of stuff to make for the walkin customer, I get a little stressed out and overwhelmed. I always get it done, but I'm tired of being worn thin.

 

The dilemma:

I have two little girls 3 and 1, and i'd love to spend more time with them without being stressed or always thinking about work. They go to daycare during the week and I often get a little sad because I feel like i'm missing out on lots of time with them. I haven't even really began to pay myself yet even though the bakery is 1 1/2 years old because agai, small town traffic isn't heavy so basically i'm paying for daycare but not briging home a paycheck...its just not worth it to me anymore to basically pay to not see my children and run myself ragged...

 

the new plan:

I had thought for a while about closing the bakery all together and moving my kitchen to our new house that we are building and I would just do special orders out of the house.  this makes me a little sad though because I really do love my little bakery. its so cute and people really love it. So I thought long and hard and thought i'd keep the bakery open, and only be open to walk in customers on Fridays and Saturdays. however, I could accept special order cakes and cupckaes then rest of the week. I could even work on them at home if I needed to do a little prep work. I'll still have my storefront, but my babies will be home with me during the week expect they can go to daycare on Fridays which they would like because they do have some friends there. I'm sure they'llneed a little break from mommy anyways :)

 

So...what do you think?  Could a bakery that is mainly special order only, but open to the public on Friday and Saturday work ok? again its small town, so I wouldn't think it would be that weird....

 

let me know what you think.. Im the only employee here so all the work resting on my shoulders has started to wear on me... but days when i'm not that busy and I have a cake to do, I love that! I can enjoy it so much more. 

 

any opinions on my new plan are welcome! thanks!

post #2 of 4
It looks like NE has a cottage food law but it's restricted to sales at farmer's markets only, so baking from home may not be an option unless you build a separate kitchen that can pass inspection.

How much revenue are you bringing in from walk-ins vs. special orders? Which days see the most walk-in business, and does it vary by season? Excluding fixed overhead, what is your net income (revenue - ingredients - labor) for walk-in orders by day, also taking into account day care costs? Do you have competition?

Have you thought about renting your commercial kitchen space to other businesses? You are close enough to Omaha to tap that market, depending on how seriously the health dept enforces the laws.
post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jason_kraft View Post

It looks like NE has a cottage food law but it's restricted to sales at farmer's markets only, so baking from home may not be an option unless you build a separate kitchen that can pass inspection.

How much revenue are you bringing in from walk-ins vs. special orders? Which days see the most walk-in business, and does it vary by season? Excluding fixed overhead, what is your net income (revenue - ingredients - labor) for walk-in orders by day, also taking into account day care costs? Do you have competition?

Have you thought about renting your commercial kitchen space to other businesses? You are close enough to Omaha to tap that market, depending on how seriously the health dept enforces the laws.

yes it would be a separate kitchen. already got that cleared with the HI. no competition in my town. the busiest days are Fridays and Saturdays, so that's why i'd only be open those days. I thought about renting my space, but I don't know if that's stress I want to deal with.  honestly its been hard for me to figure the income from walkins. its not a lot, but its enough to cover the monthly bills. if I was only open two days a week though, it would drastically cut down on ingredient costs and we would save $550 a month in daycare...

post #4 of 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by bittersweety View Post

no competition in my town.

Considering you're so close to a huge market in the Omaha suburbs, if you aren't already targeting there for special orders you should definitely look into it after doing a competitive analysis.
Quote:
honestly its been hard for me to figure the income from walkins. its not a lot, but its enough to cover the monthly bills.

Unfortunately, without this information you won't be able to make an informed decision. Look in your accounting system and build a report for the orders you've filled since you've opened, even if you haven't been posting walk-in orders to separate accounts in the past you should be able to manually sort them.

How much are you currently paying in rent for your shop? Once you have all the numbers you may find it's better to just close the shop completely after you've built your commercial kitchen at home and rely on special orders only, especially if you branch out beyond your town.
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