Pros And Cons Of Putting Prices On Your Website?

Business By tarheelgirl Updated 11 Jan 2010 , 8:39am by MikeRowesHunny

tarheelgirl Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 1:40pm
post #1 of 31

I have thought of putting a price and serving amount of under each cake photo on my website. This would be for a basic flavor/filling. Of course tax, delivery would be additional. I am a inspected/state approved home baker and am somewhere in the middle price point of my area. I had the thoughts that this may cut down on phone calls/emails with people just wanting to know a price. I do have a basic price per serving posted but some people just don't understand unless they see an actual picture of the cake in scale as to what they are getting.

30 replies
LaBellaFlor Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 2:12pm
post #2 of 31

Sounds like a good idea, but I gurantee people still ask you about pricing. icon_wink.gif

just_for_fun Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 2:14pm
post #3 of 31

You may put under each cake "$x.xx as shown, serves xx". This way ppl know that they can have this cake with a different # of servings, but the price changes too. Also, they will see what is basic and what is considered a more expensive cake.

tarheelgirl Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 2:26pm
post #4 of 31

Oh, I am sure people will still be asking which is fine. But, it may cut down the amount of people who call for an elaborate cake and when I tell them the price they are in SHOCK!! thumbs_up.gif I definitely need to put something in saying this is for this particular cake in XX servings with a basic flavor. Otherwise it may cause confusion and you know there is always someone that would say oh.. I thought it was $XX. Guess it won't hurt to try it out for a short time.

LaBellaFlor Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 2:34pm
post #5 of 31

Let us know how it goes. I hope it works. icon_biggrin.gif

And by the way, I can't think of any cons...unless you don't want competition to know your complete pricing. But I don't see how that would be a problem either.

cylstrial Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 2:36pm
post #6 of 31

I like it when I see the pricing by the cake. It helps people to know if they can afford you or if they need to go find another cake decorator.

You should definitely put something like -
$350.00, basic cake, serves 100. Flowers not included in the price
$400.00, premium cake, serves 100. Flowers not included (or included).

Just make sure that you put lots of info.

tarheelgirl Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 2:58pm
post #7 of 31

The only con I could think of what that one too. But, lets face it.. if the competition wants to know how much you charge for a particular cake they will find out one way or another! icon_razz.gif

Yes! tons of information. And I like the idea of giving the basic and premium price too!

indydebi Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 3:19pm
post #8 of 31

Brides tell me that if a website has no pricing on it, they click out and move on. They are NOT calling to ask "How much are your cakes? How much are your cakes? How much are your cakes?"

This is the information age. People are used to getting their info online, not via the phone. If your target market are the 20-something brides, then you're dealing with the technology savvy generation. Phone books? What are those? icon_confused.gif I think most of them think a phone is for texting, not calling. icon_lol.gif

Pricing on my website helped brides determine up front if they could afford me or not. If they can't, they move on and don't waste my time. If they feel they can, they call and make an appt. No wasted time on either end.

I know what my competition charges and their prices are not on their website. And I didn't care if the other bakeries/caterers knew what I charged. My philosophy was, for those who were "afraid" of putting their pricing online, "What are you ashamed of? Put those numbers up there front and center!"

Most of my clients commented on how easy it was to decide what they wanted because of my online pricing. And if you're targeting the corporate market, they REALLY dont' have time to sit there and make phone calls. They DEFINITELY want it all at their fingertips!

KNow who your targeting, know how they operate, know what they need.

Psst .... a marketing guru I met told us that 20-somethings don't mind sitting thru a 30 second commercial to get into a website, if it means they can access the website for free. Baby Boomers HATE sitting thru a 30 second commercial. KNow your target market and how they operate. thumbs_up.gif

But seriously, those who think "I'll put bare bones info online and then when they call me, I'll give 'em my big sales schpeel!" are missing the boat. This is archaic, used car saleman thinking. Because people are not calling. Your first chance for your sales schpeel is your website, not that phone call. Hubby bought his brand new truck from the dealership that had ALL of the info online, right down to his monthly payment info. It took us literally 5 mnutes to walk in the showroom and buy the truck. He handed them the print out and said, I want this one. THe dealerships who had a "Click here for pricing info" and then gave him a box to fill out with name and phone number so a salesman could call him, never got the chance. Hubby didn't want to talk to a salesman ... he wanted cost info on a truck.

As far as listing pricing under each cake individually, be prepared to update with each price change. I have over 300 photos so that would be impossible for me. In my photo books, though, I started doing that recently ..... "This cake serves 125 and is $375 as shown. Cake can be altered to be larger or smaller. Final price may differ, depending on the final design."

tarheelgirl Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 5:49pm
post #9 of 31

Thanks for the info/advice indydebi! Honestly, I'm in my early 30's and don't use phone books anymore. I go straight to my phone or pc. icon_biggrin.gif I personally would rather have someone see the pricing and make their mind up if they can afford me or not before wasting a ton of time in back/forth phone calls or emails.

FromScratch Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 7:01pm
post #10 of 31

I have basic per serving pricing listed on my site. If I wanted to put it on the cakes I'd have to edit the pictures to have tht info on there and then when I changed prices I would have to go through every image and change every price again. I'll tell you this... I did a bridal show last year and had dummies there. I have cards that listed the servings and the price of the cake as shown. Pretty much everyone there asked how much the cakes would cost... icon_lol.gif So I wouldn't expect it to stop too many of them from calling.

I think having your pricing listed on your site is important IMHO, but it's a personal choice about listing out each cake. I don't have the patience to change all of the figures when I raise my prices. Call me lazy... it's okay... hehehe.

costumeczar Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 7:33pm
post #11 of 31

Pros- Weeds out people who aren't shopping in your price range, gives people a realistic idea of what different designs will cost.

Cons- You'll still get people asking for prices (so don't do it to stop that from happening), People will assume that a price on one cake carries over onto other cakes regardless of how you phrase it, Unless you put very specific examples up people will get mad that their idea of "simple" doesn't fall into your "simple" category.

I used to have pricing on my website but now I just have a general note about where my prices fall compared to other bakers in tha area. I think that you have to give people an idea about what range you're in, but don't get too specific online without finding out what kind of cake design they want.

tarheelgirl Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 8:20pm
post #12 of 31

I have made a ton of special occasion cakes but did about 20 weddings last year. This is the 2nd year in business and I thought it may boost my sales in the wedding area if someone could browse my website and see what particular cake would cost. It will be a pain in the butt to go back and change it all again when raising my prices but I would like to see if this is even going to be effective. I did the same thing at the last bridal show.. had the little place cards in front with the price and serving amount. I received good feedback from that. icon_biggrin.gif

leah_s Posted 4 Jan 2010 , 10:44pm
post #13 of 31

I post the per serving price options.

cheatize Posted 7 Jan 2010 , 4:25am
post #14 of 31

I agree with Indydebi. Whether I'm browsing or shopping, I want to know the price. I looked 3 times for a price on hair clippers at a store last month and it wasn't there. I didn't buy one. Last week, I walked by that place again and the peg was empty due to resets. I saw the price and knew I would have purchased it at that price. They didn't bother to list the price where it could be seen and I know I will eventually buy one from their competitor because I'm miffed about it.

If there isn't a price listed, I move on. I don't want to listen to someone's spiel until I know if it's within my price range. It's cool if I can't/don't want to afford your price. No hard feelings- as long as I know that quickly so we both can move on. I won't waste my time or your's. It doesn't matter if you're the best, if your product is the best, or whatever. My budget is my budget and your price is your price. Weed out those who won't buy from the start and save your time for those who might.

pattycakes55d Posted 7 Jan 2010 , 8:21am
post #15 of 31

really good advice here. I'm new to weddings so I put up a few dummies online but didn't know how to do the pricing so left them blank. I got emails asking about prices and when I replied asking for how many servings, never heard anything.

When they ask "how much is this cake" do they know that the price will be a per serving price and it may not look that size in real life? Is that what you recommend to put up?

Kiddiekakes Posted 7 Jan 2010 , 1:02pm
post #16 of 31

I second Indydebi and a few others...I post my prices right there so they can see them...I still get emails asking prices but it's all part of business to answer and oblige.I too want to see a price upfront online when I am shopping..If I don't see a price..I move on!

tarheelgirl Posted 7 Jan 2010 , 2:36pm
post #17 of 31

This is what I am doing.. put the serving amount and then under that the price for this particular cake with a basic flavor/filling


72 servings

This way the customer will know how much this particular cake is and how big it will look. Sometimes I don't think a client realizes how small a cake will be or how large. I personally do better with a visual myself. I do have a pricing page where it clearly says Buttercream starts at $x.xx and fondant covered cakes start at $x.xx I am hoping this does help weed out some people who want a cake for nothing. So a person can click on the website and see the price and decide if they can proceed from there based on my price.

indydebi Posted 7 Jan 2010 , 4:04pm
post #18 of 31
Originally Posted by pattycakes55d

When they ask "how much is this cake" do they know that the price will be a per serving price and it may not look that size in real life? Is that what you recommend to put up?

Years and years ago I had a bride call and I gave her my "$xx.xx per serving". She sighed and said, "Does EVERYONE charge by the serving?" I explained, "This is all we have to measure by. If I just gave you a price, the first thing you'd ask is 'how many does that serve'? Paint is sold by the gallon, carpet is sold by the yard, cake is sold by the serving."

I the went on to explain that we don't count plates and give you a bill AFTER the wedding, once we see how many pieces have been eaten. The price is determined by the size of the cake that is delivered, i.e. how many servings were delivered. She said "OHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!"

I've also found that sometimes you have to do the math. "The cake is $3.00 a serving, so a cake for 100 will be $300."

karensue Posted 7 Jan 2010 , 4:12pm
post #19 of 31

I let my website do my "prospect qualifying" with a pricing page that includes serving information. First inquiries are directed to my website and will receive a "Wedding Info Sheet" via email with more pricing detail and a chart that they can use to determine approximate cost of their cake. If they're still interested after reading all that information, then we set up a consult. This has saved me so much time and energy.

Win Posted 7 Jan 2010 , 4:21pm
post #20 of 31

I love this website... it's one of my favs. It shows what you get and how much you will be paying.

pattycakes55d Posted 8 Jan 2010 , 6:24am
post #21 of 31

that is a great website. Question: I would think a lot of those cakes should cost more given the details or am I way out there?

OK, so I emailed some people back today and gave them per serving prices and didn't play saleslady. Now we'll see what happens.

three_sets_of_twins Posted 8 Jan 2010 , 7:14am
post #22 of 31

I agree with everyone else about putting up the price. It gives the customer a good idea before they call howmuch something is. I have seen many FB groups that sell non food items and when I see "email me for the price" I move on. If im in that shopping mood I dont want to have to wait for a reply the next time the person logs on and I usualy go click onto another section or group.
Yes people will STILL call you and ask about how much your cakes are lol. But less people.
The only Con that comes to mind is that when my prices are already on my website it makes it harder for me to charge the PITA price when needed because the PITA already saw the pricetag...

tarheelgirl Posted 8 Jan 2010 , 12:29pm
post #23 of 31

OH man! I totally forgot about my PITA price! icon_biggrin.gif On my sculpted cakes I am putting up a few prices but some of them I will leave blank. Those are really a PITA!

That is a great website posted! Very cool cakes but I agree with Pattycakes some of their pricing looks way low.

Win Posted 8 Jan 2010 , 3:11pm
post #24 of 31
Originally Posted by pattycakes55d

that is a great website. Question: I would think a lot of those cakes should cost more given the details or am I way out there?

I agree. I think her work is worth more than that.

Jemoiselle Posted 10 Jan 2010 , 6:14am
post #25 of 31

I agree it is a good idea to put some resemblance of a pricing schedule on one's site, given one is legally a business hehe. I
am glad others made the remark about her prices being a bit too low on certain cakes! I was looking at some of the smaller ones thinking to myself "how can I justify my prices then, with less skill than she has?" because I have a minimum order of $50. I just cannot justify the amount of time and energy it takes me, a beginner, to do them less than that anymore.

I've done a small handful of cakes, only one was paid for, and I just felt the hand detail work (exacto-carving a detailed anime character to match a fight scene the customer sent me for the cake) was too tedious for the price. It took me hours! Maybe it's just me being new and slow hehe. These forums help so much, and this is a great thread! Thanks to the OP!


pattycakes55d Posted 10 Jan 2010 , 7:14am
post #26 of 31

I'm ridiculously slow as well. I believe this is an art and everything is in the details. People don't realize how much time and effort goes into things. I know that when I have done things a couple of times I will be faster, yet it's still a lot of work.

Remember I returned all my emails giving them a price. Just an update - haven't heard a thing yet.

tarheelgirl Posted 10 Jan 2010 , 2:34pm
post #27 of 31

I'm still working on the update of my website! Lots of work to do but I hope it pays off in the long run. Here is the problem I'm having. I have repeat customers (GREAT) coming back to me this year for cakes. Well, I did go up on my prices quite a bit.. now that I KNOW what to charge. I know how long it takes to do something and what I'm willing to do/not to do. Honestly, I'm being really picky about what I take. I refuse to be in the kitchen for chump change!! I now have a minimum. Well, my repeat customers are emailing to book an order and when I tell them that the price is now XX they never write back (which is fine with me.. my price is my price) or they try to get something within the price range. I am slowly weeding through that!

Pattycakes: your price is your price!! Don't vary from that! You will weed through the ones who can afford you and those who can't. Good luck!

indydebi Posted 10 Jan 2010 , 2:43pm
post #28 of 31
Originally Posted by Jemoiselle

....because I have a minimum order of $50. I just cannot justify the amount of time and energy it takes me, a beginner, to do them less than that anymore.

It's not that you are a beginner ... it's because you make custom cakes. Let me bore you with some numbers:

A full scale bakery can bake at least 15 or 20 of the 6" rounds in one baking batch. This means they are going to pay a kitchen helper $10/hour to mix batter, prep 20 pans, and throw them in the oven. Even paying the helper to stand around while they bake, the bakery has a payroll of, let's say, $15 for ten 2-layer 6" cakes. They have $1.50 in labor invested in each cake.

A custom cake bakery, who sells by appt only, who bakes per order (not on spec) will spend that same hour making ONE 6" cake and assuming the same payroll expense, has $15 in labor invested in that cake.

My husband does woodworking so it's easy for me to do a comparison. Yes, I CAN buy a wooden bookcase at a department store for $20 that has been mass produced on machines in a factory. But for my husband to do a hand-crafted, custom made, one of a kind bookcase for a customer may cost that customer $250. People seem to understand bookcases ..... they don't get it in cakes.

But this is why you have a minimum. Unless you're a cake factory, pumping them out as fast as Buddy V's bakery in New York, your cost per cake is much different.

Jemoiselle Posted 10 Jan 2010 , 6:26pm
post #29 of 31

Thank you Indydebi =) That was great! I will remember that bit of knowledge for when I might need to repeat it later hehe.


pattycakes55d Posted 11 Jan 2010 , 8:10am
post #30 of 31

you are always so funny indydebi and right at the same time. thanks for your wisdom.

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