What About This Idea?

Business By Kitagrl Updated 2 Jun 2010 , 7:34pm by Kiddiekakes

Kitagrl Posted 2 Jun 2010 , 7:15pm
post #1 of 5

There have been a few times this year I had orders from regular customers, and they did try to plan ahead but I have been getting booked up earlier this year than in the past and I had to risk turning them away....

So I'm thinking maybe in the beginning of next year I should email all my regular customers and ask them to send in a small deposit to reserve their date and if they do, they'll get a small discount or something...? Only because I've actually had a few regular customers who have been getting cakes from me for several years (back when I was only doing maybe a cake a week, if that) and a couple have voiced to me that they wish I wouldn't be getting so busy, and they are afraid someday I'll be too busy for their cake! I had a regular customer I had to turn away recently but then last minute decided to take them on, anyway.

I thought maybe if I could get all my regular customers to give me a date in January and a small deposit, then I could give them a chance to get on my calendar, and then I won't feel bad later on if I get booked up.

I'm sort of working on a list of customers with birthdates but its one of those things I was too stupid to start doing way back when cake orders were light and it would have been easier...now its hard to backtrack and get all that information logged.

4 replies
Kiddiekakes Posted 2 Jun 2010 , 7:23pm
post #2 of 5

This is what I have done in the past and it seems to work.I have an email list of about 300 cake customers.Every 3-5 months I send out a blast email stating what is new in Cakin...and my website address etc...I also nudge them by telling them I book up fast etc...so if they want a cake...drop me an email....I get lots of orders that way and it gently reminds people who have forgotten or plain just put it off.Asking for a deposit I don't think would work as some people just don't know what they are planning from one week to the next and are reluctant about giving a deposit until they are sure what their plans are...I know...PIA for you but that's how people are...You could try it...you'll know if it works or not by the amount of deposits you receive.It wouldn't work for me though...LOL..People don't like paying in advance...unless I demand it for a large order.

Kitagrl Posted 2 Jun 2010 , 7:27pm
post #3 of 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiddiekakes

This is what I have done in the past and it seems to work.I have an email list of about 300 cake customers.Every 3-5 months I send out a blast email stating what is new in Cakin...and my website address etc...I also nudge them by telling them I book up fast etc...so if they want a cake...drop me an email....I get lots of orders that way and it gently reminds people who have forgotten or plain just put it off.Asking for a deposit I don't think would work as some people just don't know what they are planning from one week to the next and are reluctant about giving a deposit until they are sure what their plans are...I know...PIA for you but that's how people are...You could try it...you'll know if it works or not by the amount of deposits you receive.It wouldn't work for me though...LOL..People don't like paying in advance...unless I demand it for a large order.




I used to have $50 deposits but due to a recent troublesome customer and some advice on CC I have changed to half payment for deposit. BUT I was thinking about for my regulars just asking for maybe a $25 deposit in January, and having them book their date....that way they have it on the calendar. If they need to move it later, they can IF I'm still available for the new date.

I have found I have trouble sending out emails because customers keep changing their emails!

Can you tell me what you use to save all the email addresses and send out a mass emailing? I use Windows Mail right now but if any of the addresses are wrong, it won't send, and so I hardly ever mass email. I'd love to, though...I have bazillions of cake addresses, just I don't know how to organize and email to them.

cakesbycathy Posted 2 Jun 2010 , 7:33pm
post #4 of 5

I used to have $50 deposits but due to a recent troublesome customer and some advice on CC I have changed to half payment for deposit. BUT I was thinking about for my regulars just asking for maybe a $25 deposit in January, and having them book their date....that way they have it on the calendar. If they need to move it later, they can IF I'm still available for the new date.quote]

I would do this for your repeat customers only, but make it non-refundable (all new orders should be half-payment). And only for the regulars you have not had any payment problems for.

Kiddiekakes Posted 2 Jun 2010 , 7:34pm
post #5 of 5

I have three lists.One is a list I compiled on my webs.com site.It allows you to send emails and invite people to be a member of your site..Only drawback is if they don't respond or say no to the invite you have no email addy...Doesn't happen often though..Other one is my active email provider,They have what is called a address book that you can archive and it allows you to send out to everyone or a few select addresses.Drawback is if the email addy is wrong it will shoot it back to you in error but I find that happens rarely.I also have a party supply site that I am a consultant for and they also have this feature to bank every email address alphabetically that I add.Drawback is when I send out a blast email to everyone about my party site and not just cakes but I just add my cake decorating site in there also and kill 2 birds with one stone..I may get orders for my party supplies and cakes too!!!

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