Pricing First Cake

Business By jjandhope Updated 19 Jun 2009 , 7:13pm by tiggy2

jjandhope Posted 18 Jun 2009 , 7:19pm
post #1 of 17

A friend has seen some of my cakes on my facebook account and wants me to make one for her daughter's birthday. This would be my first cake for pay.

The cake would be two-tiered, fondant covered, with zebra print on one tier and polka dot/fuschia on the other. It needs to serve 40. I'll be buying the fondant premade, and using cake mix. She seems to be really easy going about the cake...

What should I charge?

(yes, I do have the cakeboss software, but Im switching computers, yada yada...and really just wanted some personal input from friends. Thanks!)

16 replies
tiggy2 Posted 18 Jun 2009 , 7:24pm
post #2 of 17

It differs depending on your location. I'd say minimum of $3.50 serving for fondant. Call around and see what the going rate is in your area.

jjandhope Posted 18 Jun 2009 , 7:29pm
post #3 of 17

I did call around. No shops in my area do fondant. Most people are used to WalMart cakes and pricing, or they get them from independent bakers in homes. I'm asking you gals here to help me with this question if you can.

Any suggestions on pricing?


sari66 Posted 18 Jun 2009 , 7:35pm
post #4 of 17

Ditto on the price at least 3-4 per serving. and get half up front or full payment.
Post pic when you're done.

jjandhope Posted 18 Jun 2009 , 7:42pm
post #5 of 17

okay...3-4 dollars is definitely more than what I thought I'd charge. I wonder if she's expecting anything near that. hmmmmm....okay, thanks ya'll.

RebelsLGB Posted 18 Jun 2009 , 7:44pm
post #6 of 17

i'm just starting to set up my pricing matrix. i also mostly just do cakes for friends. when i'm not doing them for free icon_rolleyes.gif ...i usually calculate what I think it will cost me to make and then double it and thats what i charge. haha, not very technical and i do get cheated, which is why I'm working on getting a pricing matrix together so i can quote better prices and do it per serving.

Mindy1975 Posted 18 Jun 2009 , 9:04pm
post #7 of 17

I understand your un-easyness about pricing cakes like that. I had a lady email me about 7 different pictures of two tier fondant Tinkerbell cakes for her little girl's 3rd birthday. She wanted price quotes on all of them, so I gave her a flat range from $150 - $200. In my mind, I thought I was being reasonable. Also, because I'm in the midwest, and it's hard to get paid for your labor on top of cost of supplies. Needless to say, I emailed her back and that was 6 days ago. No response either way. I also hate it when they do that. They don't even have the decency to tell you that you are too high or whatever. lol I would price that cake at about $100 -$150 for 40 servings. It is hard to quote your prices at first, but once you do it over and over again, it just comes naturally, and you will soon realize that where there is a "no", another "yes" is soon to follow! Best of luck to you.

jjandhope Posted 18 Jun 2009 , 9:34pm
post #8 of 17

thank you all so much. I know this is underpricing, but I decided to go with $80 since it is my first. I understand a lot of people think it drives industry pricing down for me to do that, but that is just what I felt comfortable doing for now. Your input helped me to have the confidence to even ask that much. In the future, if this goes well, I will ask for more!

Thanks so much

__Jamie__ Posted 18 Jun 2009 , 9:55pm
post #9 of 17
Originally Posted by Mindy1975

No response either way. I also hate it when they do that. They don't even have the decency to tell you that you are too high or whatever.

Gawwwwd, that used to bug the living crap outta me. I wised up soon enough though. I get a request, I answer it, their original email and my reply both go into a "requests" file in my email, and I'm done. Unless they write back for more info...which they usually do. icon_smile.gif But there are plenty that never respond back. I keep enough info on my site though that I would hope, they can kind of put 2 and 2 together before they contact me. Not always though.

leah_s Posted 18 Jun 2009 , 9:58pm
post #10 of 17

fondant, 2 tiers, includes my equipment charge but does not include delivery

Annso Posted 18 Jun 2009 , 10:17pm
post #11 of 17

I totally understand how you feel about pricing. The first paid order is always the hardest to price. My first was a two tier cake that one of my close friends orderd for her co- worker birthday, I charged $80 too. But when she saw how good it looked She gave me $100 and told me i must charge higher next time. I live in the caribbean so i have to try my best to be reasonable.

tiggy2 Posted 18 Jun 2009 , 10:18pm
post #12 of 17

Do you know what your cost will be for this cake (including electric, gas, boards, boxes, etc.)? Not to mention your time. I don't know about you but I don't want to work for minimum wage.

jjandhope Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 4:15pm
post #13 of 17

I am figuring $20 for supplies and ingredients. Then i figured 6 hours of work @ $10.00/hour. That is not what I always want to make, of course, but for now...and on my first cake....I know, I know. icon_rolleyes.gif

Well, I will definitely charge more as I learn and grow confidence. Thanks

kelleym Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 5:40pm
post #14 of 17

I think you're lowballing your costs, mine usually come in closer to $1/serving.

sillywabbitz Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 6:02pm
post #15 of 17

You might want to double check the cost of fondant. You are going to spend more than $20 on supplies with eggs, sugar, cake mix, crisco gas, electric, water, plus supports since it's a two tiered...I used to think oh a cake will cost x. If I'm buying eggs for one cake I'm chargingn them for my cost and pre-made fondant adds up really quick..even the wilton stuff.

I have to say my first "big cake" I didn't know how to charge and I was totally new and so I basically made a price would all be horrified. 2 tier 8" and 6" , chocolate devils food, orange/choc buttercream ,fondant bow, fondant accents and 30 jumbo cupcakes as favors with big swirl buttercream with chocolate polka dots..these things were awesome...I charged for all of that ...$65...Please dont' flame me...I know now the cupcakes alone should have been more than that...My friend was so gracious and said "no has to be more" and I was too embarassed to charge her more...she bought my dinner every time we went out for months. The point of my story is really calculate your cost and your time. Don't under charge now..and if you do tell them this is a first cake are worth it..your cakes are worth it ...and if they don't want to pay they're not worth iticon_smile.gif

Be strong.

AngelFood4 Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 7:03pm
post #16 of 17

I completely feel the same way and thank you all for the suggestions.

I'm getting paid for my 1st cake due Aug 1st and did't have a clue as to what to charge. I ended up telling her $150 for a 3 tier striped cake and as sillywabbitz mentioned, I also told her that it was a 1st cake discount. With her working for a shoe manufacturer, she also offered to give me a couple pairs of shoes for free (at retail, that alone is worth more than the cake). I'm so grateful for the opportunity to just decorate another cake!

Good luck!

tiggy2 Posted 19 Jun 2009 , 7:13pm
post #17 of 17

You must buy your fondant a lot cheaper then I can.

Quote by @%username% on %date%