Discouraged After Researching......

Decorating By IDoCakesinTX Updated 24 Jun 2009 , 11:29am by 1234me

IDoCakesinTX Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 3:29pm
post #1 of 27

So, I've done cakes for friends and family several years ago......mostly 'Wiltonized' cakes.....but now, I've been buying better supplies and really studying better techniques. I want to do this to make a tad bit of spending cash, as I am a SAHM.

So, this weekend, while driving around I noticed a new cake joint in my part of town.....called them for info.......$1.00 a serving.

How can I complete?

I am SOO discouraged. I know this is silly, and and I should be more resilient.....I just get so self-conscious about price......

Anyone else ever felt defeated when they see the competition?

26 replies
Renaejrk Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 3:34pm
post #2 of 27

did they have display cakes? do you know what their cakes look like? at $1 a serving I can't imagine their business could succeed even with sloppily decorated cake! That's barely more than wal-mart charges!

splash2splat Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 3:35pm
post #3 of 27

I am a SAHM in the process of becoming legal - but I have felt discourage about price. I had a friend ask how much I would charge for a cake that served 100 people and I knew she wouldn't go vey high so I qouted her 1.50 a slice and she about died - I thought we were going to have to call the EMT's. Anyways I don't have much advice as I need it too, but know your not the only one - hang in there and have fun.

kathy777 Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 3:36pm
post #4 of 27

well that all depends.. Are they making the cakes? or are they having them shipped in.. Because we have a small bakery if you call it that in our town only one an they ship their cakes in frozen. thats something you could tell your customers that yours are always fresh.

ljdills Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 3:38pm
post #5 of 27

Do you know what kind of cakes they do? I know a small bakery opened up around here and her prices were insane, but when I started checking into it I found out that she did not do any fondant or gumpaste work, no 3D cakes, nothing special. Her cakes were basically grocery store type cakes with plastic cake kits.

matthewkyrankelly Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 3:39pm
post #6 of 27

Don't be discouraged. Are there dollar stores where you live? Do you buy all of your necessities there? Or do you go to some other shops. There will be a difference. You KNOW they can't continue and give quality for $1 a slice. Do a little snooping there. Buy a cake. Ask questions like you want to order a wedding cake. Ask about ingredients. You'll get your answer. I'm thinking you'll be in business a year from now.

HamSquad Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 3:40pm
post #7 of 27

I don't know if this will help, but don't let this set you back. Go in, check out the joint. Most places like this usually mass produce their stuff. Look at what they offer, look at what you offer or specialize in. When putting out or promoting your product really emphasize what you specialize in, be the best at it that you can be. Keep your price where are. I know you have a great product! People know a good product and will pay for it.
Hammy

Renaejrk Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 3:42pm
post #8 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by splash2splat

I had a friend ask how much I would charge for a cake that served 100 people and I knew she wouldn't go vey high so I qouted her 1.50 a slice and she about died - I thought we were going to have to call the EMT's.




Yeah - people are cheap! Do NOT go lower, though, just because that's what you think people can afford - you will be working for nothing if you do. $1.50 a slice is really really cheap - I consider myself cheap and don't make much profit when I do a cake for money, and I charge $2 - $2.50 a serving! And I am in a "cheap" area too! A lot of people are used to wal-mart prices and expect yours to be comparable - but if they want wal-mart prices they should go to wal-mart and get their quality! LOL Your cakes/my cakes are more expensive because they taste better, are better quality, and look MUCH better! If that's not important to someone enough to pay more for it, then they should definitely save their money and buy from a grocery store bakery, etc. icon_biggrin.gif

IDoCakesinTX Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 3:45pm
post #9 of 27

I just luv ya'll girls!!! Thank you so much!

Well, I called (and fibbed icon_redface.gif ).....asking about a cake for DS. She was sweet....told me about their grand opening in July.....so DH and I are going to go check it out and see if I am better icon_biggrin.gif

All I could think of while on the phone was......I hope she's not on CC!!!!!!!!!!! LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Renaejrk Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 3:51pm
post #10 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by IDoCakesinTX

All I could think of while on the phone was......I hope she's not on CC!!!!!!!!!!! LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!




There's no way! We wouldn't let one of our fellow CCers charge so little! icon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gif

Renaejrk Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 3:53pm
post #11 of 27

BTW - get some more cake pics on here!! We want to see more of your work! I love the one you have so far! Great job on all the little details!

IDoCakesinTX Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 3:59pm
post #12 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Renaejrk

BTW - get some more cake pics on here!! We want to see more of your work! I love the one you have so far! Great job on all the little details!




I know it!!!!! I am one of those who think....well....that one wasn't so 'great' or grand.....no pic.....I'm an idiot, sometimes!

I am about to really get hot and heavy w/ this cakin' thing and start doing some "just for the heck of it cakes" to practice.

Thanks for the compliments! I feel like such a dork w/ that one pic!

Renaejrk Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 4:13pm
post #13 of 27

hahaha - you are so funny! I understand, though - I look at some of my early cakes and think "ick" that looks awful! And I'm not nearly as good as many are on CC. And sometimes when I have a "disaster" I feel like I don't want to publish a pic because I'm almost embarrassed for others to see it! (there are a few of my old pics I haven't posted) Like my Lightning McQueen - I almost didn't post because his tail end fell! - but I posted anyway - CCers are awesome and I figure someone else might be helped by my booboo! This is also a great way to "document" your progress!

Have fun making all sorts of stuff and POST THE PICS!

IDoCakesinTX Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 4:20pm
post #14 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Renaejrk

hahaha - you are so funny! I understand, though - I look at some of my early cakes and think "ick" that looks awful! And I'm not nearly as good as many are on CC. And sometimes when I have a "disaster" I feel like I don't want to publish a pic because I'm almost embarrassed for others to see it! (there are a few of my old pics I haven't posted) Like my Lightning McQueen - I almost didn't post because his tail end fell! - but I posted anyway - CCers are awesome and I figure someone else might be helped by my booboo! This is also a great way to "document" your progress!

Have fun making all sorts of stuff and POST THE PICS!




Will do! Thanks again!!!!! In the next few weeks, I plan to have at least 1-2 more pics....I'm just going to make some cakes and give it out to friends and neighbors as a 'free sample'.

You know that Saturday Night Live skit.......w/ Mike Myers....."I'm good enough, I'm smart enough, and dog-gonnit, people like me!" LOL!!!! I think I'll put that in my siggy!

TexasSugar Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 4:22pm
post #15 of 27

Don't complete with their price. Offer a custom made cake creation at your price. At $1 a serving chances are they aren't going to be in business long after the bills start rolling in they don't have the money to cover them.

Set your price to what you need to make it worth while for you. There are grocery store cakes cause there are people that would never pay more than $20 a serving. And there are other cakes for those that want something, bigger, better, custom made.

Think of it like restaurants. You have cheap fast food, decently priced restaurants and then that place that offers three shrimp on a plate for $15. A little something for everyone and their 'budget'.

__Jamie__ Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 4:23pm
post #16 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by IDoCakesinTX

How can I complete?




Simple. You don't compete. You don't offer the same thing right? Unless these people are cranking out real masterpieces, in which case they are flipping morons and doing everyone in the decorating business a disservice by their ridiculously low prices.

Kay_NL Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 4:39pm
post #17 of 27

I would go in and talk about ordering a cake, why not bring in a picture of something fancy you see on here and talk about how much your friend, daugther, etc, would just be ecstatic to have it for their birthday! Get prices, find out what flavors of cake and fillings she offers, do some more research! icon_smile.gif Just knowing the price is not enough since, as others have said, $1 a serving is not going to get her far!

The cake in your gallery is lovely, I would love to see some more as well! I think you will be fine...

There is quite a bit of competition around here, but everybody offers different twists on their cakes. The most popular cake business here does fondant/gum paste flowers but not figures (at least she has none in any of her pictures). I still get all the business I would want or need and am frequently turning people away!

Have fun decorating a few cakes!! When I was decorating for my classes I would sometimes find a local event/charity to donate to... It's a good way to show people what you can do!

Unlimited Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 4:53pm
post #18 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by IDoCakesinTX

So, this weekend, while driving around I noticed a new cake joint in my part of town.....called them for info.......$1.00 a serving.

How can I complete?




You don't try to compete with them... they are less likely to complain about you (if they hear about your business) if you are charging more and it isn't your intention to put all of the major stores out of business.

The first time that I attempted to get licensed (long, long ago), the official answer that I received was to keep on doing what I was doing and unless/until all the other stores complained, they'd let me know. That was even AFTER I said "yes, it was my intention to put them out", ha! The official advice was to make sure I wasn't trying to underprice everyone, so go for it!

__Jamie__ Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 4:55pm
post #19 of 27

Underpricing is a cardinal sin for decorators, as far as I am concerned. icon_biggrin.gif

IDoCakesinTX Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 5:35pm
post #20 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by __Jamie__

Underpricing is a cardinal sin for decorators, as far as I am concerned. icon_biggrin.gif




Well...good gosh.....I could never undercut a $1.00!!!!! I did ask this question as well, which I thought was nuts....

When I asked for a birthday cake (sheet) to serve 50 people and she said $47.....I then said....."but I want a filling"....she said.....that's an addition $3.00...so that would make "$50"!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I was like....an additional $3.00 for the entire cake?!@#@%#$@

Then she asked me about the theme and I said possibly Jungle and she said I could bring in my invite and they could design the top of the cake around that.....FOR THE SAME PRICE AS QUOTE ABOVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The Grand Opening is in Mid-July and you can bet I'll be there with my fork icon_twisted.gif

It should be REALLY interesting!

__Jamie__ Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 5:55pm
post #21 of 27

Yeah, it would be hard to undercut $1.00, but we all know it happens. I was referring to people who do sell at $1.00....it's ridiculous. Unless the product is truly worth a dollar. But that's a whole nother basket of apples. icon_biggrin.gif

Kitcake Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 6:31pm
post #22 of 27

You just set your prices to whatever they need to be for you and don't think twice about it. This place could be a blessing for you, people will hear $1.00 per slice and know they'll get what they pay for and come running to you! icon_biggrin.gif Enjoy the Mid-July entertainment!


Kit

indydebi Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 7:39pm
post #23 of 27

If price was the only thing people based their purchases on, then we'd have nothing but Walmarts and McDonalds on every corner.

"The race to the bargain basement is an easy race to win ... but it's not a race you WANT to win."

indydebi Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 7:47pm
post #24 of 27

I also meant to share a story before I ended that last post.

Today, in my BNI meeting, one of the guys stood up and said he had attended his nephews birthday party this past weekend, ".....and the cake was AWFUL!" (He then quickly pointed out that Debi didn't make it!). He goes on to say that, "Yes, having a good cake IS important." He said he asked his SIL, "Did you get this cake at Kroger?" SIL said, "I wish I HAD got it at Kroger!" (how bad is the cake when a grocery store cake is considered an upgrade? icon_confused.gif )

Price is not always the final factor.

Don't worry about the pricing. Unless she's a big financial genius, I'm going to be curious on how she can pay commercial expenses on $1/serving!

OhMyGanache Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 8:11pm
post #25 of 27

I will sidestep the baking from home/legality issues, and answer your question.

She may have underestimated her expenses, etc. and will quickly realize that she's not making much profit and will up her prices to a more reasonable figure. Or she may be discounting prices initially just to drum up business and get people in the door and trying her product.

How do YOU compete? You don't. When I set my prices, I didn't bother checking around. I based them on my expenses, how much profit I wanted to make and my skill level (I would have charged less if I hadn't been doing this almost 20 years). I would rather make 1 cake at $3/serving than 3 cakes at $1/serving. I charge more than most people in my town - I don't have a storefront, I don't advertise (I do have a website, and I have done one bridal show), and yet I have no shortage of customers.

__Jamie__ Posted 23 Jun 2009 , 8:36pm
post #26 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by OhMyGanache

How do YOU compete? You don't. When I set my prices, I didn't bother checking around. I based them on my expenses, how much profit I wanted to make and my skill level (I would have charged less if I hadn't been doing this almost 20 years). I would rather make 1 cake at $3/serving than 3 cakes at $1/serving. I charge more than most people in my town - I don't have a storefront, I don't advertise (I do have a website, and I have done one bridal show), and yet I have no shortage of customers.




Niiiiiiice. thumbs_up.gif And heck yeah to making one cake at $3.00/svg than 3 cakes at $1.00/svg. That sounds like sweatshop work to me!

1234me Posted 24 Jun 2009 , 11:29am
post #27 of 27

don't worry sweetie - if her prices are that low she will be out of business soon or raising them soon. She will realize there is no way you can run a retail location on $1 per serving. icon_smile.gif

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