What Do You Charge Per Serving?

Decorating By mom2my3girlz Updated 11 Jul 2014 , 10:11pm by morganchampagne

mom2my3girlz Posted 7 Jan 2009 , 1:17am
post #1 of 22

Someone wanted me to make a cake for them. It was fondont two layers with buttercream filling. It was going to be a Yankee jersey shirt cake. I told her 3.25 per serving and I never heard from her again. Was this too much?

21 replies
sweet_teeth Posted 7 Jan 2009 , 1:37am
post #2 of 22

I think it matters on how experienced you are, your skill level, your local market.. There are few things to think about before deciding your pricing.

W/O even seeing your pictures I would assume if they thought that 3.25 for a FONDANT covered cake.. with a lot of detail i'm assuming because you want it to be a jersey.. was too much, they are insane. They are not going to find that type of price for a detailed fondant cake anywhere.

I was told last week that 4$ a serving for an extremely detailed fondant covered cake was "way too expensive" for her and that she found a local bakery to do the cake instead. The bakery is charging 4.25 for buttercream (they don't do fondant..) and now she is regretting booking with them. She thought that since they were a "real bakery" they would give better results.. but after viewing their pictures online.. she noticed that their buttercream cakes look like a beginner did them, and that they don't even work w/ fondant. Tough luck for her..

Some people are clueless.. so don't feel like you are charing too much when one person doesn't book with you. icon_smile.gif

morgnscakes Posted 7 Jan 2009 , 2:37am
post #3 of 22

I used to think I charged too much ($2.50 for buttercream; 3.50 for fondant) because I live in a pretty small town, but I figured out that if someone wants something bad enough, they will pay for it. We're giving them a service that they cannot get from a local grocery.

look at this, then ask yourself that question again:
http://thepartyworks.com/article.php/articles_id/949
http://cakeboss.com/PricingGuideline.aspx

don't ever feel bad about someone not booking with you...it just wasn't meant to be. The right person will.

indydebi Posted 7 Jan 2009 , 2:52am
post #4 of 22

I like what ClassicCake says: If no one complains that you're too expensive, then you're not charging enough! thumbs_up.gif

KoryAK Posted 7 Jan 2009 , 3:06am
post #5 of 22

im with you on that one indydebi! i start at $7.25 for tiered cakes (yes, AK is moe expensive but i am still pretty high end for here) and every once in a while someone says oh thats IT? or doesnt even hesitate to book and it always makes me want to raise the minimum!

one thing i have found is that ppl have a pre-conceived notion about what a certain cake should cost. a lot of ppl around here think a wedding cake is "about $500". so when the girl with 200 guests comes in she is shocked and the girl with 20 is "so relieved" with the same design cake in 2 different sizes. Im sure the customer in the OP was just expecting $50 "for just a jersey cake".

indydebi Posted 7 Jan 2009 , 3:11am
post #6 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by KoryAK

one thing i have found is that ppl have a pre-conceived notion about what a certain cake should cost. a lot of ppl around here think a wedding cake is "about $500". so when the girl with 200 guests comes in she is shocked and the girl with 20 is "so relieved" with the same design cake in 2 different sizes.




icon_lol.gif Yeah, hubby was one of those! When we got married, he "just thought" a 3-tier wedding cake should cost about thirty bucks! Even tho this was 20 years ago, I still smacked him upside the head for being so dumb! (and yeah .... married him anyway!) icon_biggrin.gif

I always like the ones who ask "How much for a 3-tiered cake?" to which I respond, "3-tiers to serve 30 or 3-tiers to serve 300?" icon_razz.gif

Sweetcakes23 Posted 7 Jan 2009 , 3:21am
post #7 of 22

Love that comeback Indedebi! I'm gonna have to steal it... icon_twisted.gif
To answer the original question: I typically get $4.00 per serving for fondant covered and 3.00 for butter cream. Design sometimes will cause that to vary a bit. And then, of course so will "friends and family".... icon_rolleyes.gif

dabear Posted 7 Jan 2009 , 3:34am
post #8 of 22

psalms1 those are some cool links! Thank-you!

Tray2 Posted 7 Jan 2009 , 3:53am
post #9 of 22

in reading this.. i fear i do not charge enough... 2.50 per slice for fondant... i dont really do butter cream only cause i suck at it... I am sure with more practice I would do better but everyone always wants the fondant..... i wonder if i should charge more..... I have to say though, I have lost about 4 sales in the past year with people saying that I charge to much which makes me think that my area might be on the low end... o well once i open a shop only time will tell...

I can tell you though that I just exchanged services for a 35 serving cake with my dentist... 87.00 bill gone and all i need to do is a cake... I was funny to do that with a dentist of all people, I guess they like to eat cake too (and then run to brush) icon_biggrin.gif

morgnscakes Posted 7 Jan 2009 , 5:52am
post #10 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by dabear

psalms1 those are some cool links! Thank-you!




you are so welcome!!!

morgnscakes Posted 7 Jan 2009 , 6:02am
post #11 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tray2

in reading this.. i fear i do not charge enough... 2.50 per slice for fondant... i dont really do butter cream only cause i suck at it... I am sure with more practice I would do better but everyone always wants the fondant..... i wonder if i should charge more..... I have to say though, I have lost about 4 sales in the past year with people saying that I charge to much which makes me think that my area might be on the low end... o well once i open a shop only time will tell...




Tray 2, I can't believe you are only charging 2.50 per serving and for fondant at that! Like I said, I live in a town of about 32,000 and there's nothing here. Used to be a railroad and high industry city, but maytag's gone, our steel plant is gone...high unemployment, but I still get 2.50 for buttercream and 3.50 for fondant at a basic price. I looked at your photos and you are so worth more than 2.50 per serving just on design alone. and if your cakes taste as good as your designs...even in a small town you should probably be at 3.50 to 4 per serving easy. Don't undercut yourself! Look at the links in my above post. I think you will reconsider.

Lil_Belle Posted 7 Jan 2009 , 6:21am
post #12 of 22

I just started so I charge 3.00 for just buttercream and 4.00 for fondant. I just recently went wedding cake shopping with a good friend from work and for her cake to serve 200 it cost about 1,200.00 so around here I know my prices aren't bad icon_smile.gif

so far I've not had anyone shrink back due to prices, but I do live in a populated part of CA.

dandelion56602 Posted 7 Jan 2009 , 7:49pm
post #13 of 22

Tray2, please do yourself a huge favor & raise your prices. Your pics are gorgeous & you can't be making money. Now (being the 1st of the year) is a good time to do it! Remember you have to pay yourself an hourly rate as well b/c you are your employee!

As for me I start at $2.75/serving for buttercream & $3.75 for fondant. For shaped cakes $6/serv b/c I hate them & someone is going to have to pay me big to do them

Tray2 Posted 8 Jan 2009 , 1:33am
post #14 of 22

I just might.. lol I have had a lot of response back on this... you all are very nice.... Thanks for the encouragement. 1st of the year is a good time!!!

Tray2 Posted 8 Jan 2009 , 1:35am
post #15 of 22

I just might.. lol I have had a lot of response back on this... you all are very nice.... Thanks for the encouragement. 1st of the year is a good time!!!

Briniga Posted 8 Jan 2009 , 6:42am
post #16 of 22

Well I just started my business & so im not experienced enough, so I charge $1.50. I got 4 cake jobs!! icon_smile.gif

Sweet Decor Cak Posted 11 Jul 2014 , 7:34pm
post #17 of 22

AWow I live in a very small town. I have just started out and charger 1.50 for butter cream and 2.00 for fondant. I may be way under charging people.

Sweet Decor Cak Posted 11 Jul 2014 , 8:20pm
post #18 of 22

AI charge 1.50 for buttercream and 2.00 for fondant. I have just started out so I do not have a lot of experience. I also live in a small town with a high unemployment rate. I hope to be able to raise my prices after I have been around for awhile. I am also only doing this on the side from my home.

AZCouture Posted 11 Jul 2014 , 8:45pm
post #19 of 22

I charge $10 a serving for smaller cakes, and larger projects, sometimes as little as $5.00. I'm not just starting out, because I didn't want to be a cheapy decorator that all the Facebook mommies ran to for cheap cake. I was $5.00 a serving from day one, after I did a lot of practicing and planning strategy, who to cater to, sharpened skills, figured out a business plan, all that stuff. I'm in a town with the highest rate of unemployment in the entire country (really, it's true). But I'm not here to cater to people who should probably not be spending money on luxury items while they're unemployed, which cake is. I'm not doing this as a side job, it is my income, but I probably lose plenty of jobs to people who are doing it on the side, that just started out, because they have no real knowledge of how to price correctly, nor do they really depend on the money. :D

morganchampagne Posted 11 Jul 2014 , 8:46pm
post #20 of 22

A^ the problem I see with your plan is that when you raise your prices, you'll be back to no customer base. Because people will be trained that you are the cheap cake lady. At $1 a serving...for 50. Ppl that's only $50. I really want to encourage you to do the math on that. I bet you'll find after materials you hardly make any money as a wage. And definitely no profit

-K8memphis Posted 11 Jul 2014 , 8:54pm
post #21 of 22

not that i'm trying to set any prices -- i would in general recommend to someone starting out to double those prices and then raise them asap by fifty cents a pop after that --

 

but nobody can set your prices for you and i'm not trying to do that all i'm saying is $3.50 for buttercream and $4.50 for fondant is where you might be able to see some real profit for your hard work -- there's a lot more expense besides the immediate out of pocket expenses --

 

you run the genuine risk of burning out before you can burn bright with that low of pricing --

 

best to you

morganchampagne Posted 11 Jul 2014 , 10:11pm
post #22 of 22

A

Original message sent by -K8memphis

not that i'm trying to set any prices -- i would in general recommend to someone starting out to double those prices and then raise them asap by fifty cents a pop after that --

but nobody can set your prices for you and i'm not trying to do that all i'm saying is $3.50 for buttercream and $4.50 for fondant is where you might be able to see some real profit for your hard work -- there's a lot more expense besides the immediate out of pocket expenses --

you run the genuine risk of burning out before you can burn bright with that low of pricing --

best to you

I think this is EXCELLENT advice!

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