I'm so confused by pricing. How do you determine your price per slice? Some charge $1.50 and some charge over $3.00. How do you choose YOUR price point?
I keep getting stuck on the same thing. I had so many people asking me how much I'd charge for my latest cake and I was at a loss. There's such a difference in serving sizes from one chart to another and such a difference in price per slice.
I've been told I need to print business cards and think seriously about going into business but right now, I can't seem to get past this very confusing but essential detail.
A lot depends on the market in your area and your costs. I think KoryAK gets in the $7.00/serving range but being up in Alaska, I know the costs of her ingredients are higher than what I pay. (Her work is also incredible and I really think she could get $7+/serving in MY area, too!)
Charts: My recommendation is to pick one chart and go by it exclusively TO DETERMINE YOUR PRICING. If I hopped around with 2 or 3 different charts, then I'd have to have 2 or 3 different prices and that's just too confusing to the customer. I use the Wilton wedding chart because (1) 95% of my biz is weddings (2) i get more money per cake (3) most venues seem to cut this size anyway.
Pricing is the worst part of getting up and running .... all of us suffer thru it, whether we are making our first pricing chart or updating our 29th pricing chart.
i'm a hobby decorator but recently evaluated my pricign because I was getting requests from coworkers about cakes.
I sat down and priced out the ingredient cost of some of my top recipes and figured out how many servings they would make. then I did an approximate of my limited overhead - fuel, natural gas, etc. plus any supplies that I would need (dowels, cake boards etc.)
I decided that under most circumstances $1/per serving would cover all my costs. Then I decided how much I needed to make per hour vs. spending time with my husband or doing something for myself. Once I decided that I ran through a couple of cakes I had made and how long it took me to make them - then calculated the number of servings for those cakes and came with a cost per serving that I needed to get to make it worth my time. After this weekend I am also considering instituting a minimum number of servings - I spent a long time on a small cake to make very little money. I also charge a little extra for fondant, ganache and marzipan or cakes that contain nuts due to the extra cost of those ingredients.
I will not fluctuate on my pricing EVER unless I want to do a cake for just the cost of ingredients. My time is valuable to me - I will not just GIVE it to someone without good cause, like volunteering for a charity. Weddings and birthdays are not charity events!
Oh and I go by the wilton serving chart. I have some diagrams made up that I send out with almost every cake that shows exactly how to cut the cake to achieve the right number of servings. A 1x2x4" slice is the right amount of cake in almost all circumstances. People do not need anymore cake than that. Our society expects everything to be supersized and want it for nothing. Sure I can eat a bigger slice of cake - but I shouldnt and dont. If you put a big slice of cake on my plate I will eat until I'm stuffed. But if you put a decent sized slice I will enjoy it more.. its the first few bites that are always the best... then your taste buds are overloaded and you're just shoveling cake in.
I do have some exceptions - like for the bachelor party cake I did last weekend - it was a surprise from the bride who asked for about 10 servings but knowing that this guy can eat A LOT of cake and would eat anything leftover as a midnight snack I made a slightly larger cake and charged her for the 18 servings. Turned out that he cut about the right sizes without being told. 4" + tall with my 3 layers of filling and buttercream is a good chunk of cake.
Also, I would rather cut smaller pieces and have someone take seconds than assume everyone wants a huge piece and throw out good cake when they can't eat it all.