What Would You Charge For This Cake?

Decorating By mrswendel Updated 4 Feb 2009 , 7:59pm by MrsMissey

__Jamie__ Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 4:54pm
post #31 of 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by divaricks

The problem with those of you who think $7 a serving is too much are forgetting that we are not just selling cake - we are making a work of art - if you just want cake go to a grocry store, if you want art that can be eaten, you pay for it. The grocery stores do not make cakes like a custom baker does - not even close.

The time I spend on just an 8 inch round to get it smooth and decorated nicely is a lot more time than a grocery store will spend on icing and decorating 5 sheet cakes. And mine are torted and filled.

The point is that people who can and will pay for more quality will and those who won't - won't. Don't under-charge to go for the market of people who don't know and couldn't care less as to how much better it is just because they can afford it.




thumbs_up.gifthumbs_up.gifthumbs_up.gif Perfectly said..couldn't agree more. It is art...and I have no intention of giving away my art and wish that other decorators understood this well. If everyone was on board with this, everyone could make more. And people WILL pay it, don't assume everyone won't because a few refuse.

cor39 Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 4:58pm
post #32 of 58

I agree dont underprice your product to make it affordable. Those who can afford will pay and those who cant should look for something within their budget. I can't afford a Mercedes Benz and you dont see the makers cutting their prices to suit my needs - that's not how it works. Best of luck.

mandysue Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 4:58pm
post #33 of 58

I hate it when people ask how much to charge for a cake. Can we just not do that anymore? There are too many variables to consider. What do I care what someone else charges for a cake? I know how much money I need to make off a sale to make it worthwhile, but it might be more or less for the next guy. I figure there are enough cake buyers to go around.

jlynnw Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 5:20pm
post #34 of 58

the whole how much to charge is hard to work out. The location does have a bearing on it as does the fact if you own the bakery or work from your house. What are the ingredients? The basics of pricing a cake need to come first. Then enter the skill. Figure out the price of the the actual cake ingredients down to the water. Figure how long you "plan" to spend on your cake. How much in $ do you value your time and add it up. The cost per serving is too big of an issue, how big is the slice a celebration cut or wedding cut - whatever! a 10 inch cake is the same cost however it gets cut. Pay attention to your market but remember your time and talent should be a major factor in pricing.

mandysue Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 5:23pm
post #35 of 58

I'm sorry for my previous comment...of course we should be able to ask for advice on anything cake-related. That's what we're here for. But, pricing questions always get to me. I think there's a lot of legwork involved with figuring out how much to charge and by asking the wonderful world of CC, you're going to get an array of responses, and even spark a controversy, because there isn't a right or wrong answer. If you're going to sell cakes as a business, you should do the legwork of figuring out how much you should charge in your market.

-K8memphis Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 5:33pm
post #36 of 58

I disagree. icon_biggrin.gif

There is so too a wrong answer in pricing

And no it does not matter where you live.

It matters what you are creating.

I cannot buy a Paris designer dress at a Memphis price.

Nobody should be selling designer cakes for piss ant prices.

Ask me what I really think.

Shoot me. icon_biggrin.gif

amy2197 Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 5:35pm
post #37 of 58

Where I live, in nowhere Mississippi you will get prices from the best bakeries in the area at around $4-$5 dollars a serving. Not saying it's right, but that's what you'll get.

-K8memphis Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 5:45pm
post #38 of 58

Amy, are they doing sculptures and whimsical cakes for that price point?

alvarezmom Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 5:54pm
post #39 of 58

The cake is wonderful! You did a great job on it! I understand that pricing is VERY difficult for some of us. It is for me. I recently did cake (Baylee in gallery) and I charged her $40 because I had never done some of the flowers before and the MMF plaque, and I wasnt sure how long it would take me...well the lady is a very good friend of my sisters and she took the picture of the cake to a bakery here (Austin, TX) and they quoted her $200 for the cake! I couldnt believe it! I still cant! The lady felt bad because she only paid me $40. I'm amazed that some one quoted one my cakes $200! PPl will pay if they want the cake!

__Jamie__ Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 6:07pm
post #40 of 58

Wow Alvarezmom....holy moly. $40....oh man oh man. Well, next time charge much more, huh? icon_smile.gif

CookiezNCupcakez Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 6:07pm
post #41 of 58

icon_rolleyes.gif if you can't afford it don't buy it!

It's not a box of twinkies ...its ART!

jessi01 Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 6:30pm
post #42 of 58

Oh wow! I just read this whole thread and now think I may be underpricing.. I've been charging $1.50 for BC and $2.00 for fondant.. no matter what the cake design.. (topsy turvy included.. working on one this week infact) But one question... I have a lot of repeat customers that are used to those prices.. how can I say "Oh no now you need to pay me double what you did last time" icon_confused.gif I think I may have dug myself into a hole icon_cry.gif

__Jamie__ Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 6:33pm
post #43 of 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by jessi01

how can I say "Oh no now you need to pay me double what you did last time" icon_confused.gif I think I may have dug myself into a hole icon_cry.gif




That is tricky. I think people need to do much more research and get advice before they start selling cakes. Find a base price, be firm, and don't try to categorize everything into one one price bracket. Custom cakes are custom cakes, and I think topsy turvies fit that category!

__Jamie__ Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 6:34pm
post #44 of 58

And my comment wasn't directed at you jessi, just a general statement.

alvarezmom Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 6:41pm
post #45 of 58

Jamie85364-I am, I am! Next time I know how long it will take me. What would you charge for a cake like that?

mrswendel Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 6:53pm
post #46 of 58

I am truly sorry if I have offended anyone by asking my question. I have a standard price for my bc and fondant cakes, but because this was something completely new for me, I was just asking what everyone would charge in their area. I realize that pricing changes depending on where you are located, etc. I am in a very small rural community, with no other bakeries around less than an hour's drive away so there is no one local to compare too (other than the grocery store and you can't really compare since they only do sheet/rounds). For those of you who have responded, thank you so much for sharing your info.

__Jamie__ Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 6:56pm
post #47 of 58

The cake was 8 and 10", correct? So that serves about 48, give or take a few, by party serving standards. At your cost of $40 for the cake (which we acknowledge now was bad...lol), came out to about 83 cents per serving. I geneally price per serving regardless of the design, and adjust accordingly. Basically, it would have been about $200 to $215. Maybe a wee bit lower depending on time for accent work, but probably not more. $4.50 for a custom made, scratch, high quality ingredients, head turning cake....perfectly reasonable in my opinion. A fancy restaurant may charge more for a piece of their signature, most likely mass produced, frozen and shipped to 80 locations, piece of cake.

__Jamie__ Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 6:57pm
post #48 of 58

Actually, probably more! I'd say $5.00 per serving, and adjust from there. Hmmm.....maybe even more. I don't know, but that's a start.

__Jamie__ Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 7:04pm
post #49 of 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrswendel

I am truly sorry if I have offended anyone by asking my question. I have a standard price for my bc and fondant cakes, but because this was something completely new for me, I was just asking what everyone would charge in their area. I realize that pricing changes depending on where you are located, etc. I am in a very small rural community, with no other bakeries around less than an hour's drive away so there is no one local to compare too (other than the grocery store and you can't really compare since they only do sheet/rounds). For those of you who have responded, thank you so much for sharing your info.




I don't think you offended anybody. This is a place to ask questions. This is in it's very nature, a topic that can become quite heated. Lots of opinions, lots of advice. Don't refrain from asking questions! icon_smile.gif

amy2197 Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 7:09pm
post #50 of 58

k8memphis yes, it is sad, but that is what they start around. you can check out our most talented decorator at www.tarascakes.com she was voted best cake in mississippi. she has also been on MTV's My Super Sweet Sixteen. I happen to call Tara one of my best friends, and I am the reason she upped her prices two years ago. It's just a hard market. We all love being creative and not doing cookie cutter crap, but sometimes in order to have fun we take a little cut. Once again, not saying it's right!

mandysue Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 7:12pm
post #51 of 58

Oh, man! Here we go again. If the local bakery is saying $200, charge that, unless you are wanting to get some of their business by charging less, or unless you aren't eligible to be selling cakes (i.e. meeting state requirements, in which case you shouldn't sell at all). This illustrates my point...you should know what your competition is charging before you start selling, so do your research! But, it's never too late to charge more if you find out later. You might lose some of your existing customers, but most will still want your product because they know how great it is. I've been gradually raising my prices as I learn and perfect new techniques and I just tell people that ingredients have gone up, and basically, my work is worth more now that I've taken classes and improved my skills. I think that's only fair. It would have been easier to start out charging $5 a serving, but when I look back on cakes from a few years ago, they weren't worth that kind of money. For some of us, it's hard to charge a lot of money, esp. to our friends, but, like someone else said, if you aren't making enough $ at it, you soon lose your motivation to stay up all night making a great cake!

newmansmom2004 Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 7:14pm
post #52 of 58

I just started doing sculpted cakes (and that would include topsy turvy cakes) and rather than go by a "per slice" cost, I've established a "per hour" cost. That is much more in line with the actual value of the cake.
This may not be what everyone else would do, but for me it works and I find that in the end I'm not underpricing like I used to!

amy2197 Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 7:17pm
post #53 of 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by mandysue

Oh, man! Here we go again. If the local bakery is saying $200, charge that, unless you are wanting to get some of their business by charging less, or unless you aren't eligible to be selling cakes (i.e. meeting state requirements, in which case you shouldn't sell at all). This illustrates my point...you should know what your competition is charging before you start selling, so do your research! But, it's never too late to charge more if you find out later. You might lose some of your existing customers, but most will still want your product because they know how great it is. I've been gradually raising my prices as I learn and perfect new techniques and I just tell people that ingredients have gone up, and basically, my work is worth more now that I've taken classes and improved my skills. I think that's only fair. It would have been easier to start out charging $5 a serving, but when I look back on cakes from a few years ago, they weren't worth that kind of money. For some of us, it's hard to charge a lot of money, esp. to our friends, but, like someone else said, if you aren't making enough $ at it, you soon lose your motivation to stay up all night making a great cake!


I completely agree! I am a graduate of pastry school, but I really didn't get into cake decorating until I had my two year old. And when I found this site boy did I fall in love! Just looking at cakes I did a year ago makes me blush, but we all start somewhere. It is really tough not to kill yourself in the beginning by throwing in lots of freebies that you know will make the cake look "finished" and please the customer. You've got to find a middle ground or you will work yourself to death with nothing to show for it but an upset family. God Bless and good luck!

alvarezmom Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 7:39pm
post #54 of 58

I'm not looking to take business from any of the local bakeries. Just something I wanted to do for my family and maybe make some money here and there. Therefore, no reason to do research because I'm not at a point where I want to make a business of taking business from the local baker's business. What I really wanted to do and MAKE money was/is wedding cakes! But after reading all the mess other CC'ers go through with there brides/mom's/grandmother's I'm reconsidering. I have turned down certain cakes because some ppl dont want to pay more than $20 for a nice cake. For that amount it probably wont even cover the cost of ingredients.

Now I'm not one or should I say I have NEVER taken offense to any comments that any one has ever posted but I must say your opinion Mandysue of "If you dont meet state requirments then you shouldn't be selling at all" is totally off base. Now that is just MY opinion. There are HUNDREDS of other CC'ers that arent liscensed and they make cakes and just because they dont go through the state doesnt mean they dont met some kind of standards. And that's just my HO.

alvarezmom Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 7:44pm
post #55 of 58

Jamie85364-Oh yes bad pricing on my part. Yikes .83 cents for a slice of cake..yeah that was a bonehead move on my part. I loved this cake! I was/am really proud of it. I'll have to keep making cakes in order to feel like I can price like most of the CC'ers on here.

mandysue Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 7:53pm
post #56 of 58
Quote:
Quote:

Now I'm not one or should I say I have NEVER taken offense to any comments that any one has ever posted but I must say your opinion Mandysue of "If you dont meet state requirments then you shouldn't be selling at all" is totally off base. Now that is just MY opinion. There are HUNDREDS of other CC'ers that arent liscensed and they make cakes and just because they dont go through the state doesnt mean they dont met some kind of standards. And that's just my HO.




Well, that is an interesting stance.

alvarezmom Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 7:55pm
post #57 of 58

As your's....

MrsMissey Posted 4 Feb 2009 , 7:59pm
post #58 of 58

..time to call it a day! Thanks everyone..this topic is now closed!

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