2010 Bookings

Business By Katiebelle74 Updated 26 Jan 2010 , 2:40am by snarkybaker

Katiebelle74 Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 7:32pm
post #1 of 40

How is everyone's business this year? My friend is a harpist she would usually be 1/2 booked for the whole year by now and this year has only one event. So far I have 1/2 the amount of weddings booked that I did last year at this time. I do still have smaller cakes/ repeat business for bdays etc... but am concerned that things seem even more sluggish this year than last. How's everyone else out there doing?

39 replies
Mensch Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 7:35pm
post #2 of 40

A little slower than normal, but not much. We're about 65% fully booked. Last year at this time we were about 70% booked.

Our bridal fair is in two weeks and I expect the usual barrage of calls and mail after that.

costumeczar Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 7:37pm
post #3 of 40

I'm doing about the same too, as far as bookings go. The only difference I've noticed around here is that they have slightly smaller guest lists. I've already had people calling em about 2011, though, so I don't see any slowdown overall.

leah_s Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 7:53pm
post #4 of 40

I'm a wee bit ahead of last year, but last year was abysmal. I'm 1/3 booked for the year. Have 3 wedding shows in February though.

Mencked Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 8:11pm
post #5 of 40

I recently did my first bridal show and the phone hasn't stopped ringing. I've only been legal since August so bookings are up for me icon_smile.gif! I think the most I can do is 3 weddings per weekend and I have a couple of June dates that are fully booked. Otherwise I have 6 others booked and several inquiries and tastings going on. I'm optimistic!

HarleyDee Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 8:29pm
post #6 of 40

I have 4 weddings booked so far, but we have our big Spring Bridal Show a week from today. I expect (hope) to book several after that.

kellertur Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 8:38pm
post #7 of 40

I started booking last summer when I did an exhibit at a festival which as nice! After that, things slowed but I'm now starting to book again. My prices are a bit higher in this area, but my style / ingredients are very different from other local bakeries.

I've noticed a few of us (local decorators) have been helping each other out with referrals, which is a breath of fresh air... it never helps to be bitter about (healthy) competition. I welcome it. icon_smile.gif

There's a market for everyone's work. icon_smile.gif

Kitagrl Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 8:57pm
post #8 of 40

My business is growing slowly....I am doing a bridal show in a few weeks so I hope to really step up the wedding orders at that time.

My work seems to be slightly outgrowing the "party scene" (just because alot of regular parties don't have a high cake budget) but still not too much in the "wedding scene" so I'm working hard to change that.

jenmat Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 9:07pm
post #9 of 40

my goal was 25 weddings this 2010. I'm at 42. Yikes. Happy with it though. Next time my goal will be a little higher! The smallest wedding I have is 150.
I think its different everywhere though. Shows for me are where its at!

Kitagrl Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 9:09pm
post #10 of 40

That's really encouraging...bridal shows are so expensive so its a big step for me to do one...but so far nothing has really booked weddings for me except a small trickle. So I'm really hoping to get some bookings in a few weeks.

Do you guys try to get deposits at the show? Do you give a discount if they book at the show?

jenmat Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 9:43pm
post #11 of 40

I've done 3 things at shows: offered a coupon if they book within 3 months, offer an on-the-spot discount if they sign the contract and pay the $50 deposit, and offering nothing. All have gained me orders, when I did the on the spot orders, I had 7 brides book me, and then another 10 or so bookings because people remembered it. The coupon got me about 12 eventual bookings.

But I'm still getting calls. I got one today from a bride who saw me back in Feb.
I guess the reason I'm still getting calls is my website. It's pretty modern, while still being easy to navigate. I swear, that is really the deciding factor for 99% of my 2010 brides. I redid it right before Christmas on my new IMac, and wow, 100% worth the time.

CakeForte Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 9:50pm
post #12 of 40

I love your new design...I remember the old one and this is is definitely eye catching!

HarleyDee Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 9:54pm
post #13 of 40

Hmm, Jen I just tried to go to your website, and it just keeps refreshing the page over and over before the page ever even starts to load. Do you know what might be causing that? I tried opening it in IE and Firefox..

jenmat Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 10:00pm
post #14 of 40

Weird. I have both Safari and Firefox, and its working well on this end.
Thanks so much Forte!

HarleyDee Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 10:05pm
post #15 of 40

Yeh, it's really bumming me out. I wanna see it!! icon_biggrin.gif

jenmat Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 10:06pm
post #16 of 40

I'm seriously bummed too- bc if its weird on your end, it could be weird on someone else's end- which is why I changed it from flash to Mac in the first place!

HarleyDee Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 10:07pm
post #17 of 40

I just pulled it up on my phone, and I love your site. Very clean, modern like you said. I don't know what your last site looked like, but this one is very nice icon_smile.gif

sabriana Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 10:08pm
post #18 of 40

Hey Jen,

I have IE8 and can see your site just fine. In fact its great - spells everything out which is hard to find at times. I also really liked your "its only flour, eggs and sugar" - wonderfully put. I wish you much continued success!

jenmat Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 10:14pm
post #19 of 40

Thank you thank you thank you!
I am sorry to hijack the thread though!
I'm still working on the copy of the first page. I want as many keywords as possible, but its starting to sound hokey.

jenmat Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 10:15pm
post #20 of 40

One last thing- to anyone doing a site- the best thing is to find a program that lets you do it yourself. Don't pay someone to do it, because then you have to pay them to change it. You want 100% control 100% of the time.

Lenette Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 10:50pm
post #21 of 40

You site is very nice. What program did you use? That is great advice to do it yourself. I have learned that the hard way.

jenmat Posted 24 Jan 2010 , 10:52pm
post #22 of 40

I used IWeb with the Mac. Love my Mac!

Mencked Posted 25 Jan 2010 , 12:32am
post #23 of 40

Jentreu I love your site and I designed mine using IWeb too--It has been such a great marketing tool for me too--being able to send people there has eliminated a ton of emails and phone calls--hopefully potential customers can get most of their questions answered by looking at my site! And I agree about designing your own if you can---IWeb was just so easy!!!

jenmat Posted 25 Jan 2010 , 3:41am
post #24 of 40

Thanks Mencked- I can see we have similar tastes and yours looks good as well!
To the Amy from Vermont who pm'd me- I accidentally deleted your message!!! Hopefully you'll see this and do a re-send.

Kitagrl Posted 25 Jan 2010 , 3:43am
post #25 of 40

I paid a friend to do mine but he set it up to where I can upload my own photos and text fairly easily.

Katiebelle74 Posted 25 Jan 2010 , 4:23am
post #26 of 40

Wow this has been really helpful. First of all I see I need to do a show. I have not done one as they are 900.00 a both most of the time and I have been toughing it out enough financially that I just plain don't have the money. Sounds like it would make the difference though. I have a website which I'd like to also say... I LOVE MY MAC! and I LOVE IWEB! Exactly what I used to make mine. What are everyone else's websites? I'd love to see everyone's websites! So what software are all you other Mac lovers using to run your biz?? I have been wondering what to buy (and no I do not run windows on my mac, sort of defeats the purpose of paying more for a mac). I have a pc as well in the house so I could buy cakeboss, or else quickbooks will run on either.

Evoir Posted 25 Jan 2010 , 4:39am
post #27 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by jentreu

I've done 3 things at shows: offered a coupon if they book within 3 months, offer an on-the-spot discount if they sign the contract and pay the $50 deposit, and offering nothing. All have gained me orders, when I did the on the spot orders, I had 7 brides book me, and then another 10 or so bookings because people remembered it. The coupon got me about 12 eventual bookings.

But I'm still getting calls. I got one today from a bride who saw me back in Feb.
I guess the reason I'm still getting calls is my website. It's pretty modern, while still being easy to navigate. I swear, that is really the deciding factor for 99% of my 2010 brides. I redid it right before Christmas on my new IMac, and wow, 100% worth the time.




I love the look of your website!
Did your iMac come with the website development software - and who hosts for you?

TIA icon_smile.gif

Mensch Posted 25 Jan 2010 , 6:29am
post #28 of 40

Jen... your cakes are way too cheap.

mireillea Posted 25 Jan 2010 , 11:14am
post #29 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by jentreu


I guess the reason I'm still getting calls is my website. It's pretty modern, while still being easy to navigate. I swear, that is really the deciding factor for 99% of my 2010 brides. I redid it right before Christmas on my new IMac, and wow, 100% worth the time.




Jen, your website looks fantastic and I totally agree with you that a website is the deciding factor for most brides. I have never attended a show (plan to do one this year, though) and receive all my bookings through my website. That is why I am redoing the site right now; I want it to be a bit more classy. Hopefully it can go live at the end of this week.

O, and by the way, I agree with Mensch, your cakes are way too cheap!

leah_s Posted 25 Jan 2010 , 2:54pm
post #30 of 40

I, too, was shocked at your prices. Srsly. Shocked.

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