I had a friend contact me for a friend of hers who needed a cake for this weekend. She was in a time crunch, and was hoping I could fit her in. I said yes, and she sent a picture of the cake she wanted. (I'll attach it here) So everything is fine, we get going through the details (all with my friend being the middle man... she was copying and pasting emails).
So, I quote the price of $4.00/serving (which is higher than normal for me, but I've also never done a cake like this one before). She needs it to feed 50-60 people, the cake is carved/stacked/fondant covered, with a specialty filling, and two molded figures.
The problem is, once my friend said, why don't you two just talk, I get an email from the customer saying this "The price of $100-$125 is fine! I can't wait for my husband to see this cake!" Ummm... Maybe she does different math than I do, but wouldn't a cake to feed 50 people at $4/serving cost $200??
Am I WAY out of line with that price?? Is she trying to lowball me? How do I come back and say, For $100 I'll give you half that cake??
BLAH! help! I know I can do this cake. And make it look awesome, but I'm having a hard time not just giving in to her price.
Sorry this is so long!! Thanks for reading if you made it this far! LOL
Your price is not unreasonable. There is only one, obvious thing to do, get back to the customer telling them your price and if they don't like it then politely wish them good luck and ask that they find another decorator. Easy!
Hi ~ Stand firm on your price for all you are giving her. That's a lot to do on a rush order and special
filling on top!!!
Send/e-mail her an invoice with the correct amount (50 servings x $4 = $200 + TAX = Total Amount Due $200 (& your tax).
And politely let her know the deadline for the payment due on the full amount.. Be sure to give a few extra days before so that if she refuses the order you haven't done any work yet.
"give in" on her price?
Customers do not set pricing .... you do.
An email of "There seems to be some confusion on the price. 50 servings at my quoted price of $4/serving works out to $200. Before we go forward, please confirm this works for you. Thanks."
Thanks everyone. I didn't cave. Realized how insane that was, gave myself a kick in the pants for even thinking it, and sent this to her as a reply.
"The only discrepancy I see in your email is the price... unless your numbers have changed. For a stacked, carved, fondant covered cake, included two modeled figures, my price is $4/serving. You said you needed a cake to serve 50-60 people. $100-125 would cover a cake half the size of what you need. Please let me know how you would like to proceed.
I look forward to hearing from you.
I guess I just needed to vent it out to people who would understand! Thanks for your replies!!
I think that is a good reply to her! You gave her the correct quote while allowing her to cut the cake in half for the price she wanted to pay. I'm sure her guest list didn't get cut in half!
She's replied back already. Says that yes, her numbers have changed, and she needs a cake for 37 people - $150. (LOL... I have a picture in my head of a cake for 40, with three pieces cut out!)
I'm so relieved that this has all worked out!! off to lock her in with a final order confirmation!
The only thing is, last time I checked your cake should feed what she needs, and a carved cake should be charged by the amount of cake you must use to create that piece so even if she wants to serve 37 your cake before carving more than likely will serve 50. So still $200. And when carving a cake you really cannot guarantee that it will feed the amount they are wanting, you have to estimate a range and charge by the largest number not the lowest. So her guest list is 37, you charge at least for 40, so $160 NOT $150. You just cost yourself $10.
Edited to add even if a client wants to feed X amount of people a cake usually won't give that exact amount it will either be slightly over or under their request. I opt for the slightly over size so everyone has cake, and you get more money too.
The only thing is, last time I checked your cake should feed what she needs, and a carved cake should be charged by the amount of cake you must use to create that piece so even if she wants to serve 37 your cake before carving more than likely will serve 50.
To me there are two thoughts on this. You can charge your regular amount per serving and charge for the cake baked, not the finished servings. Or you can charge a higher price per serving and charge for the servings they get.
Either way the end up averaging out about the same.
But when you start carving away cake there is no tried and true formula to assess what the actual remaining cake structure will feed.