Deposit For All Orders?

Business By pinkpiggie78 Updated 16 Feb 2009 , 3:08pm by pinkpiggie78

pinkpiggie78 Posted 12 Feb 2009 , 2:35pm
post #1 of 15

While I am waiting for my inspection to be scheduled, I am trying to work on the other things I need to have ready for my business. I assume I am going to be doing a lot of birthday cakes and baby shower cakes because I have been asked to do several already, and well I am a stay-at-home mom, so everyone is always having a birthday or a baby. Anyhoo, do you ask for deposits on these kinds of cakes or only wedding cakes? I don't have any problems reserving dates for friends, but I assume I will get business from friends of friends, and I don't know how they should be handled... along those same lines, I am also planning on selling cheesecakes, cookies, candies, etc., should I require a deposit for these items as well?

14 replies
cakesdivine Posted 12 Feb 2009 , 4:02pm
post #2 of 15

I have a rule that any order (cakes, cookies whatever) under $300 must be paid in full at time of order. Anything over that is generally a wedding cake and then the balance over the $300 booking fee is due 2 weeks prior to event. I personally don't accept checks (too much of a hassle when they bounce), it is cash or credit cards only.

I use Paypal virtual terminal for my credit card processing, and I have a Paypal business debit card so the second I hit the submit button on the credit card, the money is in my account available for use, I don't have to wait 24 to 72 hours to have my money as with typical credit card processing. However if I want to transfer funds from my paypal account into my checking account that can take up to 72 hours but generally it is only 1 business day.

Good Luck on your new venture! Wishing you tons of orders and success!

pinkpiggie78 Posted 12 Feb 2009 , 5:50pm
post #3 of 15

Thanks Cakesdivine.... but hold off on those tons of orders... I am only one woman with a toddler and a part-time job!!

classiccake Posted 12 Feb 2009 , 7:17pm
post #4 of 15

If you do what I did.... icon_confused.gif will be nice and not take deposits. THEN, when you get stuck with several cakes (Oh, I was not placing the order, I was just inquiring), you will start taking deposits on everything. These are custom orders, and you are not going to sell them to anyone else if they are not picked up.

We now ask for full payment on all custom orders, except for a few familiar customers. We have a sign posted, no questions, you want a cake, be serious!

divaricks Posted 12 Feb 2009 , 7:26pm
post #5 of 15

where in VA are you located? I am NoVa and would love to know of others like me out there - We are getting ready to open our storefront in the next few months!

divaricks Posted 12 Feb 2009 , 7:27pm
post #6 of 15

where in VA are you located? I am NoVa and would love to know of others like me out there - We are getting ready to open our storefront in the next few months!

pinkpiggie78 Posted 15 Feb 2009 , 1:44am
post #7 of 15

I'm in Fredericksburg... no storefront here... just doing it out of my home. I have a toddler and a part-time job, plus I just started decorating, so I am not expecting a huge influx of business..

Bethkay Posted 15 Feb 2009 , 2:11am
post #8 of 15

I require full payment in advance via PayPal on all orders from new customers (friends excluded, of course). I accept payment at the time of delivery from returning customers. I do not do wedding cakes, so most of my orders are birthday cakes, shower cakes, etc., which tend to be smaller, just like you are expecting to have.

I tell first-time customers that the advance payment holds the date for them. If payment is not received within a few days, I have no qualms about taking another order for that day. This has worked out very well for me and has saved me a lot of headaches that I had previously dealt with.

Before I instituted this policy, there were instances when I had to chase down payment, or when customers changed their minds on an order after I had started it, and I got stuck with product that my family had to eat. Of course, they didn't mind that! icon_lol.gificon_lol.gif

iamlis Posted 15 Feb 2009 , 3:48am
post #9 of 15

Yes, sweet little pink piggie 78...get that money up front! For a multitude of scheduling for that week, supplies and your own general sanity icon_smile.gif

You don't want to end up sitting on a cake that you took your time and money (AND TIME AWAY FROM THE BABY!) to create for some dummy to just never come and get.

When any customers place an order, I say (in my SWEETEST voice) Visa, MC, AMEX or Discover? If you train them now they will ALWAYS know the policy.

And if you let them know they are not considered booked or even penciled in unless you got that dough!

I am so jealous, you got some AWESOME gals up there in VA! I went to MACS last year (and it is coming up again) and got tomeet some REALLY great people!


pinkpiggie78 Posted 15 Feb 2009 , 12:54pm
post #10 of 15

Thanks again everyone! I guess I will let family, friends, and returning customers order w/o payment, and all new customers require full payment up front. I did look into PayPal's virtual terminal, and the monthly fee seems like a lot for 3-6 orders a month. I think, at least for the time being, I will send them an invoice to their email and if they don't pay within the designated window, then they don't get a cake! Of course they could pay by cash too!

iamlis Posted 15 Feb 2009 , 4:38pm
post #11 of 15

Cash??? What is that?

pinkpiggie78 Posted 16 Feb 2009 , 2:09am
post #12 of 15

Believe me... I RARELY use it... I need my cash back!

pinklesley1 Posted 16 Feb 2009 , 2:29am
post #13 of 15

we do 50% to secure the date, and the remainder due 1 month before date... we used to have it 2 weeks before, but checks (for people who have had bounced checks) can take upto 21 days to bounce... and once it happened to me twice i made it one month... we had three peoples deposit checks bounce in a month causing us to have $105.00 in fees charged to our account... ( which i then added to their balances).. and they paid becuase they knew that it was their fault...

if they come in (which happens ALOT) within the month, and they have a local bank, i take it directly to their bank and cash it there and deposit the cash into my account... i know it is alot of running around, but sometimes the peace of mind is worth it..

i have to look into paypals virtual terminal... bc we dont take cc ... i used to have a terminal but it used to cost me $6 a month plus 10% of each order... so i returned it...

oh.. i also do this for everyone.. bc i have had family order cakes from me and never pay for them... and these are my cousins... like my dads niece... it has been almost a month, she knew how much the cake was, and told me ... "if you dont charge me i will go somewhere else to get the cake... how much is it..." and then i went to her house with the cake, and a bunch of food, and she was like ... "oh dont worry i will send you the money"... im still waiting... my dad is more upset than i am.. so now my family pays in advance too or they do not get a cake... simple as that.. unless you want it as a gift and then i wont charge you...

cakesdivine Posted 16 Feb 2009 , 2:46pm
post #14 of 15

If you are only doing 3 or 4 cakes a month you can still insist they pay with paypal, you don't have to have virtual terminal. Just sign up with paypal if you don't already have an account (the account is free) and put a pay now button on your website or request the customer's email and you can send them an email invoice and they pay from the invoice, It is like 3%-4% fee that pay pal charges, no monthly fee. and you just ask paypal to deposit the funds into our bank account (takes between 24 to 72 hours to arrive in your account). But cash is always great! If you want to trust a check these days that up to you, but in my experience it is more of a headache to deal with if they bounce.

pinkpiggie78 Posted 16 Feb 2009 , 3:08pm
post #15 of 15

I really liked the Virtual Terminal, and hope one day that it may be in my "budget" to use it. I already have a PayPal account, so I will just send invoices or have them go through the website (I am a bit of an ebay junkie as well, so I am fairly familiar with it). I am not planning on accepting checks, unless they are from close friends or family... I hate them.

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