When you have a customer that has a vague idea on what they want for a cake...but its one of those things you have to sit down and talk with them and sketch something out....
Do you sketch and plan the entire cake first and then price quote? (Especially involving 3D/sculptured/custom work).
If so...what if you spend an hour talking and tasting and sketching only to find that the customer was not prepared to pay for what you just sketched out?
Or do you prepare them with some sort of price range first?
Usually I'll give a starting point. You can give a ball park based on the #of servings they need and then once it's all down on paper you can ge specific. Personally, I want to be sure they understand the price before I invest hours into helping them realize their cake dreams.
I talk with them enough and take some notes until I'm sure I have an idea what they have in mind, so I can give them a basic quote per serving for the design, then I sketch, and I don't give them the sketch until I get the deposit. I try to have them aware of my pricing before we meet so we're not wasting time if they're not even remotely shopping in their budget. I don't put them in the computer until they book either.