Deja Vu...duff Cakes For Pennies!

Business By Swede-cakes Updated 17 May 2009 , 10:47pm by all4cake

Swede-cakes Posted 17 May 2009 , 7:01pm
post #1 of 19

Checking out Craigslist just now, and found another example of why customers call me to create carved specialty cakes then burst an artery when I give them the price for their CUSTOM cake.

http://nh.craigslist.org/crs/1175309279.html

Do these bakers think it's ok to undervalue their work to get customers? Do they not have the confidence or knowledge to charge what it's worth? Do they not have to pay for licenses, inspections, water tests, advertising, marketing material?

I had a young woman talk to me about a 2 tier Quince cake to feed 75 for her cousin recently. She had all the ideas, colors, etc. decided on
per the mother of the Guest of Honor who watches the Ace of Cakes show regularly. I worked out a price, and you think I'd told her to sell her worldly possessions to pay for it. She told me that she emailed someone on Craigslist who could make it for her for $40. I said to go ahead and pursue it if she felt she'd get exactly what she was hoping for. $40??? My 8" party cakes are $40!

We've beat this dead horse before, but apparently it's not a horse...it's a Phoenix b/c it keeps coming back! Lol!

Thanks for letting me vent.

18 replies
mommicakes Posted 17 May 2009 , 7:19pm
post #2 of 19

Sorry, but, "where do these people come from"?????
I wouldn't post an ad like that. I am most certainly not the best in the world, but I do pride myself in my work enough to charge what it is worth.

cylstrial Posted 17 May 2009 , 7:25pm
post #3 of 19

Weird ad! She didn't even say how much she would charge. Just "an all time low price" for duff style cakes. Crazy lady!

PattyT Posted 17 May 2009 , 8:10pm
post #4 of 19

Well!! If you want your cake with Lots!! of exclamation points, you know where to go!!!!!

Swede-cakes Posted 17 May 2009 , 8:28pm
post #5 of 19

Funny how that much punctuation can sell cakes better, huh?

Patty, I love those figures in your avatar! Are they fondant? I haven't yet had the opportunity to make some for a cake. When the time comes I hope they end up as nice as yours.

PattyT Posted 17 May 2009 , 8:51pm
post #6 of 19

Why thank you !exclamation point! I thought that ad was too funny overloaded with all those.

Yes - he is fondant and gumpaste. I don't do many so have yet to get a good "system" for them....just dumb luck and extra body parts. In fact I did a little graduate for a friend's daughters cake this week, and as I was putting the graduation gown on her she started falling apart. Everything I did made it worse...till it finally looked like a crime scene. I ended up shaping a paper cup, stuffing her torso (including her footless leg stumps) into the cup up to the arms. Covered it all up with fondant and she was able to attend graduation despite her horrible disfigurement.

I'd love to take aine2 tutorials to see how they go together - right now mine are pretty hit and miss..

But thanks very much!!!

indydebi Posted 17 May 2009 , 8:58pm
post #7 of 19

If i had the nerve to compare myself to Duff Goldman and his crew, I'm sure people would at least expect to see some pics to be able to see if I was going to back it up. That's a pretty big claim for someone who advertises on CL!

Cakenicing4u Posted 17 May 2009 , 9:28pm
post #8 of 19

Keep your eyes on Cake Wrecks, I'm sure it will end up there!

all4cake Posted 17 May 2009 , 9:45pm
post #9 of 19

Ignorance abounds! This one was sold by a local BAKERY. Ordered 4 days in advance...customer unknown by owner/employees(no friends/family discount to consider). The owner has no clue is the only reason for this sale! It costed $40. PLUS TAX(it is to laugh)

ETA it was approx 9,7,5, fondant covered.
LL

Swede-cakes Posted 17 May 2009 , 9:52pm
post #10 of 19

Wow, all4cake! That is a pretty cake, and it IS a great deal. Their parking lot must be so jampacked, you'd think they were GIVING stuff away! Oh wait. They almost are. icon_wink.gif

all4cake Posted 17 May 2009 , 10:02pm
post #11 of 19

She's the sole owner now...she was the silent partner(the 1/2 that supplied the money and not much else). She's been asking for help and a few area decorators have been trying to help her out. Although I do own my own business (licensed home-based), I felt bad for her and when she contacted me for help, decided to extend my help temporarily. I didn't want to know her recipes, her clients, her costs, charges...her business. I got curious with this one as she was looking really depressed and I asked her what she charged for it...she is truly ashamed/embarassed/annoyed with herself...she told me...I freaked out. Then, I said, "Dayum, you keep charging this price, I won't have you to worry about much longer. You'll put yourself out of business!" She's a very nice person with no clue. I would do it for anyone pretty much. We all need help from time to time, eh?

all4cake Posted 17 May 2009 , 10:06pm
post #12 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by DebBTX

Quote:
Originally Posted by all4cake

The owner has no clue is the only reason for this sale! It costed $40. PLUS TAX(it is to laugh)



Did you order the cake just to see what you would get for 40.00, or was it ordered by someone you know?

I think the cake itself is wonderful. I love the bright colors. The bows are great.

-Debbie B.




Haha...noooooooooooo...I ain't got that kind of money to be ordering cakes from another baker! lol

I made the cake FOR the bakery that the cake decorator/1/2 partner walked out on.

weirkd Posted 17 May 2009 , 10:12pm
post #13 of 19

I have one of those near me! I saw her listing on Wedding Wire. She basically copied everything I do word for word but then added the fact that she will beat "any" competitors pricing. She didnt have a website just looks like something on Facebook. But I think she has actually got some of the leads I got because Ive had people come back and say that they were booking with someone that was much cheaper. Well hell! If I do it any cheaper then I might as well not bother to do it at all! Besides, it makes me wonder if someone is doing something that cheap where their buying their ingredients from and the quality of the cake itself? I mean do these people really want to sacrifice quality for price?? Its just mind boggling!

DebBTX Posted 17 May 2009 , 10:12pm
post #14 of 19

All4Cake, I saw that you had explained things while I was posting. I tried to go back to delete the post, and thought that I had. Somehow it posted later anyway.

This poor lady needs to order Cake Boss to help her with her pricing. I hope she gets the help she needs.

-Debbie B.

Swede-cakes Posted 17 May 2009 , 10:16pm
post #15 of 19

all4cake, I wish someone would give me that cake for my birthday!

It's too bad that she's in a pickle. And you're right, sometimes we find ourselves needing a hand. I'm wondering if those were the prices all along, though. Besides getting help from local talented decorators, is she also learning how and why to change her pricing strategy?

all4cake Posted 17 May 2009 , 10:20pm
post #16 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by DebBTX

All4Cake, I saw that you had explained things while I was posting. I tried to go back to delete the post, and thought that I had. Somehow it posted later anyway.

This poor lady needs to order to help her with her pricing. I hope she gets the help she needs.

-Debbie B.




She would definitely benefit from CakeBoss! I should clarify that I only decorated the cake. Several decorators have been going in on different Friday evenings to help her out 'cause we all know she doesn't know. She's been told by many that she needs to find out what the business is doing...especially now....she should've known before but now she needs to know.

all4cake Posted 17 May 2009 , 10:33pm
post #17 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Swede-cakes

all4cake, I wish someone would give me that cake for my birthday!

It's too bad that she's in a pickle. And you're right, sometimes we find ourselves needing a hand. I'm wondering if those were the prices all along, though. Besides getting help from local talented decorators, is she also learning how and why to change her pricing strategy?




No, she just blurted it out on the phone...."Hi. how much would a 3 tiered cake that looks like presents be?"(notice the lack of the question about how many servings required too).

"hmmmm...were you thinking maybe a 12" for the bottom?" icon_eek.gificon_surprised.gif

"I guess that's okay. I just want it to look like a stack of presents. bright pink and green. use your imagination."

"That'll be $40 plus tax."

I told her I didn't want to create cakes for her but if she could sketch them out, I would help her bring it to fruition...she's yet to sketch one for me!

She's had almost 3 months of Fridays. and she stays as long as the decorator stays too. I share with her what I know. I show her things (fbct...)that she and her employees could do in their slow time and be able to actually do well.

she does need her OWN decorator though.

I didn't mean to sideswipe this thread...just wanted to say underpricing comes from all over and sometimes purely innocent/lack of knowledge/ignorance(sounds harsh but it is what it is) reasons.

DebBTX Posted 17 May 2009 , 10:37pm
post #18 of 19

All4cake,
You did a fantastic job for her. That cake looked great.

-Debbie B.

all4cake Posted 17 May 2009 , 10:47pm
post #19 of 19

Thank you!

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