Yet Another Pricing Question :)

Business By aunt_dodo Updated 22 Sep 2009 , 9:55pm by __Jamie__

aunt_dodo Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 3:41pm
post #1 of 41

First, I know I charge too little, and I've begun the process of upping what I charge, I just sometimes feel like should charge a little less to get more business. ugh

For this weekend I am doing a cake similar to the one attached... I have already given her a quote, and I know I undercharged...but I'm curious by how much.

I have made the fondant tiara (going on top in place of the purse), a smaller fondant purse, fondant wand, ring, fondant star cutouts (still have a few more things to make with fondant)...these are all luster dusted. The cake will feed 30, and it's a simple white cake with buttercream.

What do ya'll think I should be charging?
LL

40 replies
aunt_dodo Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 3:46pm
post #2 of 41

Forgot to add, the cake will be a little smaller then what is pictured....

Kiddiekakes Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 3:49pm
post #3 of 41

Welll..that looks to be a 10 inch base and 8 inch top..By Earlene Moore's cake serving chart it will feed 45 or less by wilton charts.So you say 30....I charge $3.00 per serving base price...so that is $90.00 plus upcharge for all the fondant.I say anywhere between $120.00 and $150.00

__Jamie__ Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 3:50pm
post #4 of 41

Me personally, would be no less than $5.00/serving, but if it didn't add up to at least $100 (based on you saying smaller and me not knowing what your smaller is), then it would be $100 minimum. It would be a 6' for sure. Non negotiable. But I wouldn't be using BC for the details on the bottom though, it would be pearls or oval "beads". Darling cake!

leah_s Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 3:57pm
post #5 of 41

$175 no delivery.

And stop referring to Earlene's charts. They cause you to give away free cake. The Wilton charts are FINE!

aunt_dodo Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 4:00pm
post #6 of 41

WHen I say smaller cake I mean a 8", and 6" instead of a 10" and 8".

__Jamie__ Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 4:02pm
post #7 of 41

$180-$200...depending on detail.

__Jamie__ Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 4:03pm
post #8 of 41

I often wonder about the people who claim to be Earlene fans. Before they decided to be Earlene chart users, had they ever really cut a Wilton size slice to see just how appropriate they are? Or did they follow advice from someone else, assuming Wilton was tiny. Huh.

aunt_dodo Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 4:08pm
post #9 of 41

I'm not a fan of anybody's chart really....I found a chart here on CC, and started using it. By saying the wilton chart, that is the one found there on their website, yes?

The detail will be just about identical to the pictured cake....I have already made several fondant items, and the cake will have the same kind of ruffle border as well.

Thanks every one!

BTW, I quoted her $80....

leah_s Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 7:13pm
post #10 of 41

::falls onto floor::

- thud -

LaBellaFlor Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 7:25pm
post #11 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by leahs

::falls onto floor::

- thud -


LOL! Your so crazy leahs!

matthewkyrankelly Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 7:26pm
post #12 of 41

I would like to buy a cake! icon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gif

CanadianCakin Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 7:31pm
post #13 of 41

I undercharge ALOT! I get so frusterated at myself for this the last cake I did i got $80 for it...have a look it's the boy baby shower cake for Olen....Leahs I'm sure if you look you would fall even lower on the floor...I know I grossly undercharge, and like you aunt_dodo I I find it hard to charge more I don't know why really I wish we had a better way to get over this I have struggled with it a lot...I'm glad I'm not the only one...we need to get some backbone I guess!

__Jamie__ Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 7:32pm
post #14 of 41

Me too, at that price, it's a steal!

__Jamie__ Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 7:42pm
post #15 of 41

I think it's a delicate matter. I think a lot of people want to do a cake just for doing cakes sake. I, like several people in here are not at all shy about saying "I don't market to the masses". That mentality has produced the following results for me:

A. Firm, unwavering pricing structure (unless they are a proven player, meaning they are a consistently good customer)

B. Less orders. Which means the ones I do get, are at that firm pricing I mentioned above, so it more than balances out when it comes to money in my pocket.

C. Absolutely hectic free calendar. I limit myself anyways, and I'm not kept from my family working on small orders that I would barely break even on.....just to make a cake.

I love what I do, and I keep myself exclusive. And I wouldn't have it any other way.

If 5 people pass on a quote, and only one goes for it, great. I get to create a beautiful piece of art for someone who will truly appreciate it for the time and talent it took. That to me, is priceless. But then again, this isn't my sole income, so I know if it were, I'd probably have to change my tone. icon_biggrin.gif

LynnZClaire Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 7:45pm
post #16 of 41

me too me too...I can't price a cake. I've been telling everyone the "cost" price when they ask me what they owe me. I'm basically doing it for friends and family but lately I've gotten a few word of mouth orders. I started to quote a few and can't see going over $100...and I made a cake to feed over 80 people for $30. **geesh**
I guess I'm broke myself and can't see paying a lot for a cake so I feel like I don't think anyone else would either......and I KNOW how much work goes into making and decorating a cake, lol. I just can't get my head out of the "free cake cloud" lol.




oh and yes, if you flip me over there is a small sign printed on my back that says "insert backbone here" lol.

dhccster Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 7:51pm
post #17 of 41

I think $80 is way too low. Make sure you tell the lady you gave her a discount and if anyone asks how much the cake is, tell her to say $insert amount here.

I would love to see a picture when you are done. Good luck!

leah_s Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 7:52pm
post #18 of 41

The problem with low pricing isn't just that you devalue your own work, you devalue mine too. You set people up to believe that what we do is "just cake", not an art or a skill and not something worthy of paying good money for.

So you personally wouldn't pay $100 for a cake? Not even relevant.

What's relevant is what your customers will pay.

And let me remind everyone in this thread that this is the Business Forum which long ago was declared a rainbows and puppies free zone. We tell it like it is over here.

queenfa Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 7:57pm
post #19 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by leahs

The problem with low pricing isn't just that you devalue your own work, you devalue mine too. You set people up to believe that what we do is "just cake", not an art or a skill and not something worthy of paying good money for.

So you personally wouldn't pay $100 for a cake? Not even relevant.

What's relevant is what your customers will pay.

And let me remind everyone in this thread that this is the Business Forum which long ago was declared a rainbows and puppies free zone. We tell it like it is over here.


Pls tell them Leah.
You are my superstar*************I'm with you all the way.!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

queenfa Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 7:57pm
post #20 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by leahs

The problem with low pricing isn't just that you devalue your own work, you devalue mine too. You set people up to believe that what we do is "just cake", not an art or a skill and not something worthy of paying good money for.

So you personally wouldn't pay $100 for a cake? Not even relevant.

What's relevant is what your customers will pay.

And let me remind everyone in this thread that this is the Business Forum which long ago was declared a rainbows and puppies free zone. We tell it like it is over here.


Pls tell them Leah.
You are my superstar*************I'm with you all the way.!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

queenfa Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 7:58pm
post #21 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by leahs

The problem with low pricing isn't just that you devalue your own work, you devalue mine too. You set people up to believe that what we do is "just cake", not an art or a skill and not something worthy of paying good money for.

So you personally wouldn't pay $100 for a cake? Not even relevant.

What's relevant is what your customers will pay.

And let me remind everyone in this thread that this is the Business Forum which long ago was declared a rainbows and puppies free zone. We tell it like it is over here.


Pls tell them Leah.
You are my superstar*************I'm with you all the way.!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

LaBellaFlor Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 7:59pm
post #22 of 41

You know I believe in charging accurately, don't worry if it seems too much, cause you WILL get the clientelle that you want. I don't really want the client whose eyes pop out at the mention of a $100 minimum regardless of how small & plain the cake may be. I want the client that gets it that if you want "custom", if you want "personal service", if you want "quality ingredients", then it cost. I've been doing this for a good while now, but I've moved so many times, it always takes a while for people to find out what I do. I've had to start over so many times, its ridiculous (former military wife), but I've never undercut my prices. Of course I charge way more then say 15 years ago, but cost of living goes up every year & so do my prices. I love spending time with my many kids (7 total) & husband, so yeah, my time cost!

DeeDelightful Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 8:03pm
post #23 of 41

i'm thinking an easy $150, too, because you are having to do so many smaller details...really cute cake! That's worth $5 per slice, $25 per layer + $10 for each handmade details...however you look at it, it's $150 minimum.

LynnZClaire Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 8:05pm
post #24 of 41

Double post, sorry.

LynnZClaire Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 8:05pm
post #25 of 41

oops, I meant I couldnt see charging over $100 for one of my cakes. Not that I don't think some cakes on here look like they shouldn't be worth well over $100, some def. are worth wayyyy more than that. I'm still new at cake decorating, so I feel like people are doing me a favor by letting me try my skills out on one of their cakes for their special occasion. I also know that I can't afford to pay much for a cake, so others may not be able to afford it either...but I don't want to ruin their special day by saying "sorry friend, but you're going to have to have a walmart cake for your birthday this year." I'm doing it for a hobby, not business, so I'm sure I would be talking differently if it was my means of living.

And Leahs, I don't need "rainbows and puppy dog feelings" lol..I've noticed a while back you speak it like you see it on all forums and I respect that icon_wink.gif

FromScratch Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 9:26pm
post #26 of 41

That would be a $200 cake from me... no delivery.

There are a couple of ways to approach cake making... going for simple volume... easy cakes that taste great for a moderate price and going for boutique pricing and work. High detail and big ticket prices. Either way is a viable option, but don't give boutique cakes away for simple volume prices. The cake in question is a highly detailed cake... it deserves a price that reflects the work it took to make it.

No one is doing you a favor by making you work. You want to practice your skills then get some dummies and practice for practice's sake. Don't feel that because you are just starting out that you have to be rock bottom in price. remember that new doctors and new lawyers don't work for pennies because they just graduated school... why should you? If someone can't afford your prices it's not your problem... move on to the next person. If you want to give price breaks to friends that's okay, but let them know how much it WOULD be if they weren't getting your "pal-o-the-decorator" discount. Remember that it is YOU who is doing the favor.... the favor of shopping for ingredients... and mixing them up and baking them... and cooling and leveling... and making icing and filling... and decorating... and cleaning up the huge mess it makes. Cakes are SOOOOOOOOOO much more than just the ingredients. It's the service of all that is involved. Someone comes to you because they either can't or don't want to deal with what goes into making a cake... that service is well worth a decent pay check. icon_biggrin.gif

JaimeAnn Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 9:53pm
post #27 of 41

The only Free cakes the come from me are for Immediate family Birthdays ....
And that is their gift from me..

If they need a cake for anything else the pay for it! I give them a discount but they get an invoice with the actual Joe Blow price and then a discount off of that.

That cake in a 8" & 6" is 32 Wilton Party servings (2 layer, 4 inch high)
I would charge $160 for that cake.. and even at $160 I am sure I am cheaper than a lot of bakers.

I did a Zebra cake for a friends daughters 2nd Bday I only charged her $60 but that was my gift , she knows how much my cakes cost.. Everyone Loved it , When a lady at the party asked how much I would charge for that cake for her daughters birthday I told her $150 . She almost hit the floor.. She looked like she had just been slapped in the face. My daughter who is 21 looked at her and said "You should probably keep getting your cakes at Costco, You can't afford my moms cakes"

People want custom designed cakes like they see on TV but they have no clue as to what those cakes cost..

My husband and I were talking and said they should have to show what they charged for the cakes on those TV shows so people have a realistic idea of what it costs.

LaBellaFlor Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 10:02pm
post #28 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by JaimeAnn

The only Free cakes the come from me are for Immediate family Birthdays ....
And that is their gift from me..

If they need a cake for anything else the pay for it! I give them a discount but they get an invoice with the actual Joe Blow price and then a discount off of that.

That cake in a 8" & 6" is 32 Wilton Party servings (2 layer, 4 inch high)
I would charge $160 for that cake.. and even at $160 I am sure I am cheaper than a lot of bakers.

I did a Zebra cake for a friends daughters 2nd Bday I only charged her $60 but that was my gift , she knows how much my cakes cost.. Everyone Loved it , When a lady at the party asked how much I would charge for that cake for her daughters birthday I told her $150 . She almost hit the floor.. She looked like she had just been slapped in the face. My daughter who is 21 looked at her and said "You should probably keep getting your cakes at Costco, You can't afford my moms cakes"

People want custom designed cakes like they see on TV but they have no clue as to what those cakes cost..

My husband and I were talking and said they should have to show what they charged for the cakes on those TV shows so people have a realistic idea of what it costs.


`I TOTALLY AGREE! I so wish they would put the price next to a completed cake in ALL those shows!

aunt_dodo Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 10:53pm
post #29 of 41

Thanks to everyone who replied and gave their insight in to what they would charge, and why...Greatly appreciated!

As far as "puppies and rainbows", I didn't ask for any. I simply wanted to know what should be charged. I have begun my process of charging more, and trying to figure out prices adequately.

Again, thanks for all the help! I will post a picture when it's done!

aunt_dodo Posted 14 Jul 2009 , 11:14pm
post #30 of 41

Another question: What is the typical charge per serving for a specialty cake such as a Tres Leches? I have a cake request for a Tres Leches, 30 people, Fresh Strawberries on top, and Fruit filling in between layers.

Thanks in advance!

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