Trying To Figure Out How To Make A Pricing List

Decorating By cylstrial Updated 2 Jan 2009 , 2:13am by Moniquea

cylstrial Posted 1 Jan 2009 , 2:24pm
post #1 of 13

Hello all!

First -- I want to wish each of you a Happy New Year!! May it be a great one!!

Now down to business.. I'm in the process of writing a business plan. I want to open a cake shop this year.. and so I'm now on the pricing part of all of this. Don't worry, I HAVE priced all of the ingredients out, and I know how the cake companies price their cakes..

My main question is.. after you have included all of the ingredients.. your time, electricity, etc.. and you have the base price. Do you then add more money per slice for a more difficult cake?

And what do you with the color paste. If they choose 2 colors for their wedding cake.. do you add the price of that in the ingredient part or do you add that into that person's cake.. because some people just want a white cake. I hope this is making since. =o)

Any suggestions on how you do your pricing for the level of difficulty would be helpful.

Thank you so much!!
Celeste

12 replies
CarriM Posted 1 Jan 2009 , 2:56pm
post #2 of 13

Good luck with your new venture this year! I swear pricing is the hardest part of the business! icon_biggrin.gif I've always just had a base price per serving (simple cake flavor with buttercream frosting) then upped the price for labor intensive designs/fondant instead of buttercream/premium flavors... I've never charged more based on the color choices, the cake is going to use the same amount of frosting if it has one or 10 colors on it.. just takes a little extra time to mix a new color.

HTH,
Carri

Kiddiekakes Posted 1 Jan 2009 , 3:22pm
post #3 of 13

I too would obviously charge more for fondant covered cakes.My Mom basis her fondant prices on $10.00 a square inch.So if the cake is 8 inches..that would be $80.00....I charge per serving.I charge $3.00 for Buttercream......$5.00 for fondant..base prcie just to cover the cake.Any extra embellishments like cake toppers...fondant figures more labour intensive designs I add from there.HTH!

cylstrial Posted 1 Jan 2009 , 3:34pm
post #4 of 13

Thanks for your replies, I appreciate the good info!

indydebi Posted 1 Jan 2009 , 4:33pm
post #5 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by cylstrial

My main question is.. after you have included all of the ingredients.. your time, electricity, etc.. and you have the base price. Do you then add more money per slice for a more difficult cake?




You can. I have less than a handful of cakes that take so much more time that it justifies an add'l fee. But I just add a flat "design fee" to the overall cake. And it becomes semantics. If I add $200 for a complex cake for 100, then what I'm doing is adding $2/person to the cost. I've just gone ahead and "done the math" for them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cylstrial

And what do you with the color paste. If they choose 2 colors for their wedding cake.. do you add the price of that in the ingredient part or do you add that into that person's cake.. because some people just want a white cake.




I'm not sure how to figure the cost of "two toothpicks worth of color" that I add to icing. It's so miniscule, it's not measurable.

Many businesses have a flat charge for misc supplies. Example: At the dealership where my hubby works, they have a Shop Charge added to the invoice for every car repair. This covers non-measurable expenses, such as paper towels, floor and seat covers, topping off various fluids (but they dont' use the whole container). Lots of caterers call it a Service Charge, and I've read it covers misc expenses such as driving to the facility for pre-meetings and walk-thru's, extra tablecloths and napkins for decoration on the tables, food prep time in the kitchen prior to the actual event, etc.

So one way to cover the 2-colors-in-a-cake is just to figure a percentage or a flat fee into your pricing structure for misc supplies that may or may not be really measurable.

ladybug76 Posted 1 Jan 2009 , 4:54pm
post #6 of 13

All the info on this forum is so helpful.... I swear pricing is the most difficult part. I am in the process of zoning my home to bake out of, but I stumble on pricing. If I could throw something else into the mix for advise...... I basically have my pricing down for a 'typical' cake; however, most of my orders have requests for personalized fondant 'critters' (as I call them), which basically is sculpted to the customer's request to resemble the birthday girl, a favorite toy, etc. How do you even begin to price these? I am thinking by hour (to sculpt) would be best... but then how much is my time worth? I've even seen where bows and other accents carry an additional charge.
I love decorating and designing cakes.... I just wish I could blink my eyes and all the 'business mombo-jumbo' would take care of itself!!! icon_rolleyes.gif
Thanks to all!! ... and Happy bakin' in 2009!
~Jaime

indydebi Posted 1 Jan 2009 , 5:13pm
post #7 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by ladybug76

... but then how much is my time worth?




Think of it as if you were running (pardon the phrase) a "real" business .... and that you have employees coming in and punching time clock. How much are you going to pay this employee to create that figure? Don't forget to add in payroll taxes and cost of payroll processing. How long would it take them to do it? What is their skill level? I pay me more per hour than I do my girls who just make cookie dough balls.

How much is my time worth? You can't pay me enough for what my time is worth! icon_lol.gificon_lol.gif But start from there...... thumbs_up.gif

classiccake Posted 1 Jan 2009 , 5:18pm
post #8 of 13

Pricing is difficult and challenging. I am a very conservative spender, so it is a struggle for me to price things. One of my employees will come to me and say They want so and so on this cake. What should I charge ?" I will say, "Charge $20.00" and they will say "$30.00?"

I tell them "Sure, " and the customer pays it....it is a standing joke.

I would try to establish a price for custom things you do often. Say, one of your fondant figures is $20.00. Have it all on a price list. When you price things out, refer to your list and people accept "the established" price. If things are more difficult, then add that at the end as a "custom charge."

If you are like me, you will not charge for some things, but as time goes by, you realize the time or expense involved and you tweak your charges.

Moniquea Posted 1 Jan 2009 , 8:44pm
post #9 of 13

I'm sooo with you...

Colors irritate me,
1)extra mixing means I might add air bubbles
2)'will I have enough of that color?' (you don't want to have to make more)
3)then there's the different tips needed with different colors (so I have to stop, clean the tip for however many accents it might be needed for (I don't own multiples)
4)not to mention all the additional bags (I try to minimize when I can - time and environment are my motivators)

...so my basic charge includes 3 colors however it limits creativity but I don't know how to charge for more colors. If they give me 'free reign' I do it all for free - I lose money but get experience thumbs_up.gif

Per serving always gets me so I researched that today and found how to get more than 12 out of an 8". My clients, so far, are kids b-day parties and if they are like me don't know how to properly cut cake, do I...

1) include a printout of how to do it?
2) charge to do it myself?

At my wedding this summer the waitstaff didn't know how to cut cake and my cakes came out as crumbled messes... my good friend (who's been to many weddings and has a friend who's bakery is renowned in my area) meakly got out the compliment 'it was the best TASTING' cake I've ever had at a wedding'... I was embarrassed - it was supposed to be my pinnacle! Both looks and taste!

Any more tips out there? icon_smile.gif

cylstrial Posted 2 Jan 2009 , 12:13am
post #10 of 13

Thanks again to everyone out there! I love Cake Central because I always get the answers I need from people like each of you!

cylstrial Posted 2 Jan 2009 , 12:16am
post #11 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moniquea

I'm sooo with you...



Per serving always gets me so I researched that today and found how to get more than 12 out of an 8". My clients, so far, are kids b-day parties and if they are like me don't know how to properly cut cake, do I...

1) include a printout of how to do it?
2) charge to do it myself?




Yes -- lots of cake decorators provide a cutting guide to go with the cake. Because if dad cuts the pieces of cake too big.. then it looks like you didn't make enough cake.

When I get to that point, I definitely plan on handing out a little cutting guide for everyone who buys a cake from me.

Goodluck!!

indydebi Posted 2 Jan 2009 , 12:22am
post #12 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moniquea

Per serving always gets me so I researched that today and found how to get more than 12 out of an 8". My clients, so far, are kids b-day parties and if they are like me don't know how to properly cut cake, ....




I get 24 from an 8" cake. Wilton Wedding Chart.

When they order a cake and they are a little iffy on the serving size, I tell them "An 8" cake serves 20-24. A standard serving size is about the size of a folded over peanut butter sandwich. If you plan to cut them larger than that, you might want to go up to a 10" cake."

They have been warned. I also direct them to my website page on How to Cut a Cake.

Moniquea Posted 2 Jan 2009 , 2:13am
post #13 of 13

Well, that settles it icon_wink.gif

Indydebi it's no wonder your a Superstar!!! icon_biggrin.gif

Gratefully yours, Moniquea icon_redface.gif

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