jdelectables Posted 30 Apr 2009 , 12:00pm
post #1 of

I just have to vent. I had a customer want to order 20 onesie cookies. The cutter is about 3" maybe 3 1/2". Anyway, they were to be favors for a baby shower. I was going to package them and everything...all for $2.50 each which is about about $1.50 cheaper than what they should be. Well, they decided not to order. I get sooooo irritated with people. Do they not realize the amount of time it takes to do sugar cookies???? And is $2.50 too much to spend on a favor??? Also, these cookies are adorable. I've done them before and have them on my website and they are done beautifully, if I say so myself! Do you all have this problem with sellling sugar cookies????

31 replies
indydebi Posted 30 Apr 2009 , 12:04pm
post #2 of

When I get a shocked and surprised reaction to the cost, I always tell them, "And I'm about 20% cheaper than (the nat'l cookie bouquet company). So find the closest one and keep their pricing handy.

I have also told them "If you want three colors, it will take 2-3 days because I have to let each color sit for 24 hours before adding the next one." (whether it does or not, that's what I tell them! icon_rolleyes.gif )

The price of the nat'l chain plus the explanation of how long it takes usually takes the wind out of their sails.

GeminiRJ Posted 30 Apr 2009 , 12:05pm
post #3 of

Unfortunately, the general public has no clue the amount of work and skill that goes into decorating a cookie. And your quote of $2.50 sounds extremely reasonable. People are just cheap, plain and simple. Don't undersell yourself, or you'll start to hate receiving orders. Smile, and tell them they should check the prices that Cookies By Design charges. Better yet, have a copy of similar cookies. Show them when they want to discuss price. Say something like, "Well, my competitor would charge you $6 for each cookie. I'm willing to make them for $3.50." Watch their eyes open wide and their jaws drop when they get educated on cookie prices.

Deb_ Posted 1 May 2009 , 3:04am
post #4 of

It is frustrating because we all know and appreciate what it takes to put out our creations but unless someone has ever done it they'll just never get it.

I guess we have places like WalMart and Sam's club to thank for the mass produced cookies and cakes........that's the *price* that people get used to seeing.

Elise87 Posted 1 May 2009 , 3:25am
post #5 of

I think that is fair price. Yesterday i made a batch of 20 cookies in the shape of a scroll and hat together which were like 4" with rolled fondant to take to my graduation ceremony for my class mates and it took me hours and hours to do all of them!

So yeh i can see what you are saying about they have no idea how much work goes into making cookies. Plus home made cookies are much better quality then store ones i think.

P.S I had a fear that people would say no thanks to my cookies when i gave them out but thankfully my classmates thought the cookies were great and very appreciative of them so that made me feel really happy about doing all that work icon_biggrin.gif

Cathy741 Posted 1 May 2009 , 11:30am
post #6 of

Wow, I am way undercharging. My price is $1.50/cookie, $1.75 bagged. If it's for a wedding, more detailed, etc., I'll charge a little more. But then I've been doing this for under a year, so my client base is not what it needs to be (people with lots of disposable income). I do want to have a full-fledged legal cookie business one day and quit my day job. Is anyone doing that and are they really making a living at it after expenses? I have so many ideas, but with working fulltime I don't have enough time to work everything out and make any real progress towards that goal. I'd appreciate any info you care to share.

ZlatkaT Posted 1 May 2009 , 11:33pm
post #7 of

WOW, how I wish to get $2.50 per cookie. I am really cheap - $14.00 per dozen. But my "customers" are comming back for more. I don't do sugar cookies, so maybe my cost is smaller. I would be worry that I could't sell for over $2.00 per cookie. I would like to know how is thouse peoples bussiness going, they prices are up to $4 per cookie??

varika Posted 1 May 2009 , 11:41pm
post #8 of
Quote:
Originally Posted by jdelectables

I just have to vent. I had a customer want to order 20 onesie cookies. The cutter is about 3" maybe 3 1/2". Anyway, they were to be favors for a baby shower. I was going to package them and everything...all for $2.50 each which is about about $1.50 cheaper than what they should be. Well, they decided not to order. I get sooooo irritated with people. Do they not realize the amount of time it takes to do sugar cookies???? And is $2.50 too much to spend on a favor??? Also, these cookies are adorable. I've done them before and have them on my website and they are done beautifully, if I say so myself! Do you all have this problem with sellling sugar cookies????




While I tend to go, "Yes, $2.50 is too much to spend on a party favor!" ....I also go, "$2.50 is dirt cheap for cookies like that!" But then, I look at beautiful cookies as something to go on the buffet, not to be party favors, and I'd totally pay $50 for FOOD!

...which is probably why every party I've ever thrown has about three-quarters of the budget being food costs, and skimping on the decorations...

craftyone65 Posted 2 May 2009 , 12:24am
post #9 of

I know exactly how you feel....I had a woman ask me how much I would charge for 2 dozen frog cookies for a frog day (don't know what this was for) at the elementary school. They are decorated sugar cookies not individually wrapped. I gave her a price of $1.00 each since it was for the school. She said she would get back with me and never did so I guess she thought that was too much. Funny how when I first started I was really upset when someone decided I was too high but now it doesn't matter to me at all!!! I have better things to do with my time and energy (even though I love it) but between the cost of ingredients and time away from my grandbaby I'm not gonna do it for nothing.

emccle Posted 2 May 2009 , 12:51am

I had the same thing happen to me where I work. Someone asked for 3 dozen multicolored iced shaped sugar cookies for a baby shower. I gave her a price and at the last minute, she told me they decided to get a cake instead and only need 12 cookies icon_mad.gif . I still needed to make as many different colors and clean up as many tips, bags, bowls, etc. as if I was making 36 cookies. Boy, was I mad! I should have just told her that was below my minimum, but I have to work with these people, so I have to keep the peace. And of course I had quoted a low price. Now when someone at work asks me to make something (and they are always expecting cheap), I don't think twice about it, I just say that I'm too busy.

cylstrial Posted 2 May 2009 , 1:10pm

People will pay for them. I know that when I'm in the mall...I go to the cookie shop. I get a sugar cookie with buttercream icing on top and it's usually around $2.00 for 1 cookie. There is no time or skill involved in that cookie. Just a swirl of icing on top. But yet, it's delicious and I want it, so I get it.

Kiddiekakes Posted 2 May 2009 , 1:37pm

That is the key...Cylstrial is right..If they want them..they will buy them.I charge $5.00 per cookie and have a minimum of 24.It takes almost as much time to bake and decorate 10 cookies as 24 so if I am going to take the time and do them then I am going to be paid handsomely for them!! Especially Wedding cookie favors..An average favor for a wedding is about $5.00-$10.00 for something small and much more for larger.My girlfriend spent $15.00 on these cheezy white picture frames for her wedding favors and honestly...I wouldn't have given you $2.00 for them but she wanted them.Now I could have made her a pretty fancy cookie for about $6.00 and people remember a good cookie more than a silly picture frame...JMO ..I will never understand!

michellesArt Posted 4 May 2009 , 1:31pm

plus what do you do with those cheesy wedding favours anyway? they collect dust until one day you come across this box and wonder are they still married? while with a pretty cookie favour at least they go wow-how unique, take some pics and EAT IT! money well spent i say. and i don't get frustrated at the price-i don't have the time to pimp myself out for anyone time is money!!of course i didn't always feel that way-i just wanted to do cakes and cookies no matter what. i would rather take the time to explain that it's atleast a 3 day process and they're gorgeous and delicious so take it or leave it (besides, when your throwing a party-kids anyway, i spend $5-7 on junk and trinkets for the grabbag anyway!!)and wedding favours!! even if you DIY it's going to be more then a cookie i would think.

hopi Posted 1 Jun 2009 , 3:57am

I've been asked by people for over 1 year when will I start selling my cookies. I thought I was finally ready till I started getting reactions to my prices (and this is by friends!!!). I have been quoting people .75 cents an inch instead of $1 and they are still sticker shocked! I have 3 little ones at home so it is extremely hard for me to find the time to do this but as you all know.... its done because we love it. These reactions have me so discouraged that I no longer want to try to get into the business. I will just stick to giving them out as gifts! At least I feel appreciated that way icon_sad.gif

Kitagrl Posted 1 Jun 2009 , 4:09am

People just don't realize the time it takes to do cake or cookies. They also don't stop to think about how much money really goes into them. Cutters, wrapping, sticks, ribbon, ingredients, boxes, and etc.

I personally think $2.50 for a favor is very reasonable. On the other hand, I'm a "DIY" type person who would figure out a way to make the cookie myself. (Thus I have a cake business LOL).

I don't make cookies often but if I do, I start around $3/each. Kinda discourages too many cookie orders, as that's one thing I don't have alot of patience for! I admire you that do! I keep cookies down to maybe once or twice a year, and that fulfills pretty much any cookie decorating desire I might have.

RosieC Posted 1 Jun 2009 , 10:34am

I have only dabbled in the cookie decorating but I know it wears me out to make even a few..it's an all day thing. This past week my daughter-in-law came over and we baked and decorated cookies for my grandaughter's birthday. As we were working away she says she now sees why they are so pricey online...I had to laugh. Everyone at the party was in awe at the outcome though so it was worth it all..

TracyLH Posted 1 Jun 2009 , 3:06pm

Bear in mind, it depends largely on where you live. Cookies in metropolitan areas or near large cities (especially 'hip' ones) will generally sell higher than in other, more rural in comparison areas. So that is a factor as well.

luv2bake6 Posted 1 Jun 2009 , 3:45pm

About a year ago when i started doing edible images on cookies for friends and family, i got a call from someone who saw them who wanted to know how much i'd charge for 50 photo cookies for something she was planning. I quoted her $2 a cookie, which didn't even include the time it takes to crop and fix up the pic she wanted. She said she'd get back to me.

Then she calls and says she only needs 10. Like that's going to make a difference in the work involved or the price? You guys all know what i mean. I just told her that there is a min. of 2 dozen per order plus $5 for customizing the photo cuz i wanted her to go away. Which she did.

I just uploaded a picture of a flower bouquet i gave to a friend for helping me out with something. She told me that it was soooo nice and i just had to sell them. I asked her how much she would pay for something like that (there were 4 of those cookies in the vase, each wrapped with stick in cello and ribboned) and she said $30. Do you guys think that is a fair price for those?

indydebi Posted 1 Jun 2009 , 5:30pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by luv2bake6

Then she calls and says she only needs 10. Like that's going to make a difference .....




Oh yeah, I always love the ones that think smaller is easier/cheaper.

Had a bride make a catering inquiry and asked if she got a discount because it was "only" for 50 people. I replied that she would be paying a surcharge because it was "only" 50 people. Same amount of gas to get there, no matter if there is food for 50 or food for 150 in my van; a 6 hour set-up/reception/tear-down/cleanup costs me the same in payroll whether there's food for 50 or food for 150 on the table; table linens cost the same to rent no matter if there is food for 50 or food for 150 sitting on top of them.

(big sigh!)

luv2bake6 Posted 1 Jun 2009 , 7:00pm

I never thought of that with regards to catering but that is so true.

Whether i'm doing 5 cookies or 100, i still need to make the cookie dough (i'm not gonna split it), make the icing, take out all the bags, tips, colors, etc. They really don't realize that. And, i'm not going to work on a photo and run my printer for only a few cookies!! (there are test runs and screw ups with the colors and stuff)

Elise87 Posted 15 Jun 2009 , 3:06am

Just thought i'd come back to this topic and say

1. i checked for a plain normal baked cookie at a shop called cookieman and they sell them for $2.20 AUD ($1.80 USD) and that is mass produced without all that effort of decorating so therefore it is fair what we charge.

2. I asked my friends how much they would buy my dress cookies i made for each and they both said about $4 AUD ($3.20 USD) cose of all the work and i was shocked and said i would prob go to just $3 AUD ($2.5 USD)....good to have friends who appreciate the work that goes into cookies icon_smile.gif

Elise87 Posted 15 Jun 2009 , 7:22am

*shocked that they didn't say a really low price that is...

Bonnie42 Posted 15 Jun 2009 , 12:02pm

They will never get what they want at WalMart. You get what you pay for. Even Cookies By Design cookies are often made in different shapes than the design, and I find that "cheap" looking. However, if folks want to go there and pay $7.98 for a cookie on a stick, they're welcome to get that sticker shock when they go to order. After that, $4.60 sounds cheap, and they come back to gladly pay that. Friends always expect "a deal." Of all people who should be willing to pay for all of your work, it should be your friends. Sometimes I tell them if they're willing to come to my place and spend two days there getting their two dozen cookies made, then I will give them a discount for their time and effort. No one ever comes.

luv2bake6 Posted 15 Jun 2009 , 1:56pm

That's funny bonnie42

sweet-treats1975 Posted 15 Jun 2009 , 2:27pm

I am just starting out and was wondering what to charge for decorated sugar cookies. This does help me out, but like many others I am also afraid that people will think "Gosh I can go to my local grocery store and get them so much cheaper".
I can make them just not sure what to charge.

Have a wonderful day!! thumbs_up.gif

indydebi Posted 15 Jun 2009 , 3:10pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by sweet-treats1975

.... but like many others I am also afraid that people will think "Gosh I can go to my local grocery store and get them so much cheaper".




Why are you "afraid" they will think that? This is not a "I want them to LIKE me" contest. You're out to make money, not friends.

If someone tells me "I can get it at walmart cheaper", I tell them "yes, you can. It's three minutes down the road that way."

They need to decide if they want a grocery store cookie or YOUR cookie. They are not the same thing.

Not everyone can afford me and that's ok.

hopi Posted 15 Jun 2009 , 9:23pm

LOL!! Good comeback Bonnie 42! A lot of my friends find my prices too high.... Now I vent to them how insulting I find it that people expect my time to come cheap (or free!). I'm noticing now how my friends that still come to me for cookies are now willing to pay for them. It just boils down to the sad fact that people don't realize (or sometimes turn a blind eye) to the time we put into it. If they are rude enough to insult us in such a manner.... there are subtle ways to throw it right back at them icon_rolleyes.gif

GeminiRJ Posted 16 Jun 2009 , 12:05pm

As mentioned, you get what you pay for. Unfortunately, some people seriously cannot tell the difference. My MIL is one of them. We were at a function this weekend where someone had brought star shape sugar cookies.They were quickly iced and covered in sprinkles (LOTS of sprinkles). My MIL asked if I had brought them, because they looked like my star cutter. I'm no cake/cookie snob, but it was obvious these cookies were done by the gaggle of girls who were sitting at a table with their Brownie uniforms on. Sigh. I just smiled and told my MIL that no, I had not brought them.

Bonnie42 Posted 16 Jun 2009 , 6:20pm

You know, before I began cutting and decorating cookies, I didn't have a clue either. But I do know that I used to steer away from all the designs for decorated cakes in the Wilton mags that had decorated cookies included because they just looked way too hard to do. I was right. Cakes are just so much faster to do. The best thing about cookies is that there is no shortening in the icing. I remember how I hated cleaning up after doing cakes -- there was all that "lard" to deal with. Stand your ground with your cookie prices. If one is going to "give them away," they can just be given as gifts to whomever you please, and you'll never worry about fussy or complaining customers. Everyone will love to see you coming. The ONLY gifts I ever give to family and friends are cookies (I give 12" cutout cookies to grandchildren and others) -- even as wedding gifts. Does that sound cheap??? My gifts are never duplicated, and no one ever doesn't use them. You get pleasure while you're making that very special cookie, and you get pleasure when the receivers are dlighted with them. You're lucky to have such a unique ability. And that is my soapbox for the day.

indydebi Posted 16 Jun 2009 , 6:34pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bonnie42

(I give 12" cutout cookies to grandchildren and others) -- even as wedding gifts. Does that sound cheap???




Nope! And when I've given wedding cakes as gifts to my family, I've managed to work into the conversation ".....bet you no one ELSE gave you a $700 wedding gift!" icon_rolleyes.gif

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