fourangelsmommie Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 3:54pm
post #1 of

How many of you are unlicensed (not legal) and have a website up?

I was on a local yahoo group of cheapcycle and found a posting of a woman that had taken all 3 Wilton classes and said she wanted to bake cakes and sell for extra $. She also admitted to not being legal, so all $ had to be in cash.

I would be absolutely terrified someone would turn me in if I attempted to do that....though I would love to have my own website or even try it.

Is this normal? I just rely on word of mouth for my 'business', but wondered if anyone else 'knows of someone else doing this'?

Do you advertise any other way?

33 replies
chaptlps Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 3:59pm
post #2 of

I'm not a licenced home decorator, but I do have a website (I also work at a licenced bakery) I have not posted any prices on the site. But did give a phone number and my email addy. So that i could be contacted if necessary.

saj_stuff Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 4:01pm
post #3 of

Well, I have a website and I'm not legal. I'm not really doing it for a big booming business or anything though. I was just doing it for neighbors and friends and people would ask about me. The only place I could easily post my cake pics were on my photos pages, which is where my pictures of my kids are too....which I didn't care for in case it was passed around. Long story short, I love being able to send someone to an easy to remember website just to check out my work. And my husband is LOVING getting to learn how to do all that computer stuff. icon_smile.gif Works out well for us.

Good luck!

mbalis Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 4:03pm
post #4 of

I have a website that shows pictures of my work. No prices, phone number or location ~ just my email. I use word of mouth, then direct them to the site to see photos.

Think of it this way - you're just posting photos of your creations to share with family and friends far away icon_smile.gif ...nothing wrong with that!

jmt1714 Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 4:03pm
post #5 of

anyone who in print states her business isn't legal and wants payment all in cash is nuts. She is advetising to the world that she is sheltering income from the IRS,

ccwkg Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 4:04pm
post #6 of

One way to have a web site and stay out of trouble is to go head make it and leave out prices. This way you could get your portfolio out there for people to look at and you could be contacted. Good luck

Sugarflowers Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 4:07pm
post #7 of

I have a web site and it at one time included my pricing and policies. I no longer do cakes for sale, so it has been removed.

However, I would never advertise in the manner that woman has. That's just asking for trouble.

Having links from other decorators or supply shops is one way to get good traffic without "advertising". It is still considered advertising, but at least it's not quite as overt as hers. Doteasy.com is a great web host, it's only $25/year (unless they have changed since I last paid, of course).

Word of mouth works the best in any business anyway. Entering in contests seen by the public has gotten my name out there. Since there is no indicator of a bakery name, no one knows for sure. I have gotten a lot of orders by entering the state fair, chocolate festivals, and the Oklahoma State Sugar Art Show. I don't like to pay for advertising, so this has worked well for me.

HTH

Michele

sassijen Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 4:07pm
post #8 of

I was wondering the same thing, I'm not legal yet but would also like to get a site. And didn't know if it was ok or not. Thanks for asking the question.

fourangelsmommie Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 4:09pm
post #9 of

Ok, so say I wanted to start my own website just showing my pictures and my email address... how do I do that? Is there a website to create my website?

mbalis Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 4:11pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by fourangelsmommie

Ok, so say I wanted to start my own website just showing my pictures and my email address... how do I do that? Is there a website to create my website?




www.freewebs.com

I'm sure there are others too, but I like this one. You can change the entire look very easily. I do pay the $2 per month so there are no annoying ads at the top, and to upload more than one photo at a time. I really like freewebs.

lionladydi Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 4:16pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmt1714

anyone who in print states her business isn't legal and wants payment all in cash is nuts. She is advetising to the world that she is sheltering income from the IRS,




EXACTLY!! This has been cussed and discussed on CC many many times and usually ends up with someone getting riled.

Diane

ccwkg Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 4:17pm

I use www.freewebs.com they have a lot of templates to choose from and if you don't mind having google adds on your site, they don't charge. You also have the option to pay for your site and not have the adds (this is the one I chose). It was pretty easy to make also. If you decide to go with them and need any help, I would be more than happy to help out in any way icon_smile.gif

ccwkg Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 4:19pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by lionladydi

Quote:
Originally Posted by jmt1714

anyone who in print states her business isn't legal and wants payment all in cash is nuts. She is advetising to the world that she is sheltering income from the IRS,



EXACTLY!! This has been cussed and discussed on CC many many times and usually ends up with someone getting riled.

Diane





Or the post completely disappearing icon_lol.gif

tobycat Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 4:20pm

I have a blog at blogspot.com, but it's for family pics right now. Don't know if this would work for anyone (you're kinda limited on format), but it's totally free, and so far it's been great for the family pics. I might start posting my cakes up there to send to family, etc.

Sarah

Granpam Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 4:54pm

We have a family website with Zoomshare .com. where I put cake pictures. If someone has been refered to me that has not seen my work I givethem the address. As a hobbyist in SC you can sell a few cakes but you can not advertise. I don't do enough outside of family and friends to even consider getting a seperate website. I am afraid that would be considered advertising and therefore illegal.

moydear77 Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 5:00pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by mbalis

I have a website that shows pictures of my work. No prices, phone number or location ~ just my email. I use word of mouth, then direct them to the site to see photos.

Think of it this way - you're just posting photos of your creations to share with family and friends far away icon_smile.gif ...nothing wrong with that!




DITTO!

mbalis Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 5:00pm

Any reference to price would definately be advertising...with photos only, you're just sharing your work - same as if they were your family reunion photos, or anything else.

cocorum21 Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 5:15pm

I'm not legal yet but I have a website. I just have my photos no contact # or email address and absolutely no prices. I made some calling cards with just my name cell # and email address. The email address give away my website address so I didn't include that on the card so it doesn't look like I am advertising the website. I'm not really looking for customers yet but if someone sees my cake and want to contact me i can just hand then a contact card and show them the email address.

I think it would be really hard to explain to an inspector if you got caught advertising on your website that you aren't legal and want cash. You couldn't play the "Oh I didn't know" act. icon_rolleyes.gif

fourangelsmommie Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 5:49pm

Anyone else? Great Ideas!

Bump...

customcaker Posted 24 Feb 2007 , 11:27pm

I have a website and I'm not fully legal yet. I like to post my prices, because it saves time with phone inquiries. If they see the price and know approximately the cost and call me, then I know they won't try to "haggle". I always had a hard time charging for my skills. I always thought, anyone can buy a cake mix and bake and frost a cake, so in the beginning I practically gave away my products. I've since realized that my time and "skill" are worth something! But it helps me to have it in writing icon_rolleyes.gif !

mrsb37 Posted 25 Feb 2007 , 10:25pm

For those of ou who use freeweb.com or other free web building pages, how easy is it for your customers to find your webpage? I'm almost legal, and I want people to be able to Google something like "cake decoraters" & my city & state & be able to come up with my website.

Also, the html I want on freeweb.com is unavailable. Can anyone recommend other sites like this?

Thanks!

saleann Posted 26 Feb 2007 , 4:38pm

You might try myspace! Just post it as a personal page but you can add tons of pictures and myspace is a huge thing right now.

bobwonderbuns Posted 26 Feb 2007 , 4:41pm

I have a website and I'm not legal. I also don't have a storefront on the website. It's more of a gallery for people who want to see my work. If they need to contact me they can. Much of my work is word of mouth anyway, so this works out better than me running around town with my portfolio.

mycakesandmore Posted 26 Feb 2007 , 4:43pm

I agree with a lot of the others and before I was "legal" I set up my site as a "hobby" site to display my photos for people to be able to see my work. I'm slowing working my site into something more "businesslike".... you can check it out if you want to see it: http://www.mycakesandmore.com

Oh, the reason for the post... I use bravenet.com I use the free site but you can pay a fee and get the site "ad free" if you'd rather. It's VERY easy to use and I've been very happy with it so far. I did purchase my own domain name because I wanted something that was easy to tell people and easy to remember.

In the last year I've been finding out that people are finding my website through various searches so I know it's getting out there (google, yahoo, msn, etc.) ... to make sure it gets picked up by search engines be sure to include key words on your home page... "wedding cakes" ~ "decorated cakes" ~ whatever you want people to be able to find... Hope this helps?

Janette Posted 26 Feb 2007 , 4:49pm

Do this a person e-mail her and tell her this isn't a very wise thing to do.

irelandshs Posted 26 Feb 2007 , 4:50pm

I have a myspace set up just for my portfolio and I don't sell cakes, so I put up a disclaimer saying so just as a precaution. Myspace is nice to go through for a site if you're just looking for word of mouth because you can set yourself up in groups to meet local people, or better yet, get into a cake group or two!

mrsright41401 Posted 27 Feb 2007 , 5:09am

I have a website with prices and my cell #. I don't advertise it though, except in my website button link on here.

It's more for me to have ready for when I DO get licensed and for me to build a portfolio.

Rachel

slingmama Posted 27 Feb 2007 , 9:11pm

I have a website and I am not "legal". Although, I do have a disclaimer on the front page stating that I am not a licensed business and that the site is for friends and family. I think I actually stole the saying from a CCers site. I also, don't include prices. But I did set up an email addy that is listed on the site for ppl to email me.

Mostly I just do cakes for friends/family.

mom23girlstoo Posted 27 Feb 2007 , 9:47pm

For those of you who have websites and/or for those of you who do "sell" cakes that are UNLICENSED.... do you have product liability insurance?

I'm a newbie to the cake decorating world, and I do all the cakes for my office (about 40/year) that they do pay me for, and thought about getting my name out there for more expereince but afraid of all the liability issues.

Can you get liab insurance if your not licensed? Its impossible to be licensed in Colorado out of your home so I'm stuck for now....

Just curious - thanks ladies! icon_biggrin.gif

mrsright41401 Posted 27 Feb 2007 , 10:05pm

Nope.

Which is why I'm looking for alternatives to being licensed out of my home right now.

Rachel

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