Pita Customer... Need Idea Of Cake Pricing...

Decorating By tmt578 Updated 24 Nov 2010 , 6:46pm by brincess_b

tmt578 Posted 23 Nov 2010 , 4:16pm
post #1 of 22

Hi all... I'm having a time with this PITA customer, who actually IS MY VERY OWN COUSIN! She is having a 30th bday party in which she has asked for a cake serving 30 ppl, STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE, Whipped Cream icing, BUT WITH A DRESS DESIGN as a topper (first attachment below, cake by Onceuponacake).

I was considering do a 10 round cake, 3 layers strawberry shortcake, whipped topping, strawberries around the bottom border, than doing a 6" dress cake on top, purple mmf, as a topper (which would not be eaten of course). I told her $95.00 ($2.50 per serving for 38 servings). Which does not include DELIVERY, FONDANT FLOWERS, AND FEW OTHER EDIBLE DESIGNS. SHE TOLD ME THAT WAS TOO HIGH!

Please tell me what you would charge for that, even if it is much higher or lower. I need to know I'm not going crazy... or maybe I am! icon_mad.gif

Thanks...

Oh PS. She asked me what I would charge for this badge cake below (2nd attachment) as well. After I told her my price.. She said "JUST TO LET YOU KNOW THAT WAS $55.00 AT A BAKERY IN PHILLY!" I TOLD HER TO GO THERE!

21 replies
tmt578 Posted 23 Nov 2010 , 4:18pm
post #2 of 22

Sorry for some reason the attachments wldn't attach... Here's another attempt.

UGH... I GIVE UP! THAT PIC WAS A CAKE BY CC member Onceuponacake, the wedding dress cake she did. And the other was a police badge cake. [img][/img]

cakesdivine Posted 23 Nov 2010 , 4:22pm
post #3 of 22

Tell her that Philly and DC are two different areas with two very different economic profiles. DC ingredients cost more, therefore the finished product costs more. Tell her you were giving her a bargain that your normal fee would have been $6 per serving instead of $2.50. Let her know you were doing it for cost! Which when you add all your time at even a minimum of $10 per hour for yourself and delivery expense, you really are doing it for cost if not less! icon_smile.gif

Kitagrl Posted 23 Nov 2010 , 4:38pm
post #4 of 22

I'm in Philly area and I don't know where she got a price of $55 for ANY cake unless it was a Sam's Club sheet cake...its not that cheap to live here! Maybe slightly cheaper than DC but not much....she could not have gotten that quote from anyone reputable.

Sometimes people lie though...I had someone call me...I was booked...I gave NO price....so I sent her to a cake friend and this person lied to my cake friend saying I quoted a certain (lower) price, trying to get my cake friend to give her the same "deal". But my cake friend knew very well that wasn't my price and wouldn't give in. I hadn't even given a price at all since I was booked for the date, so the lady just flat-out lied.

tmt578 Posted 23 Nov 2010 , 4:44pm
post #5 of 22

I truly appreciate your post. I feel the same way... she can go somewhere else for all I care. I'm doing HER A FAVOR I feel! But she keeps trynna send me stuff and "compare apples to apples" as she says, but what she doesn't realize, and I've told her, is that ANY 3D CAKE (serving 20-25) WILL BE MUCH MORE EXPENSIVE THAN A FLAT SHEET CAKE (serving 55). She don't get it, but I'm tired of the back and forth.

WHAT WOULD YOU BOTH CHARGE FOR A 10" Strbrry shortcake with a 6" dress cake topper, serving 38?

BluntlySpeakingKarma Posted 23 Nov 2010 , 5:20pm
post #6 of 22

$400.

tracycakes Posted 23 Nov 2010 , 5:40pm
post #7 of 22

No favor. she doesn't want what you are willing to give, she can go somewhere else. Life is too short for pita's or drama.

nhbaker Posted 23 Nov 2010 , 5:43pm
post #8 of 22

Oh I FEEL your pain!! I live a very rural area where people think $20 for a supermarket cake is ridiculous. This is my fourth year in the biz and I'm still trying to master the art of pricing out occasional cakes (wedding cakes I've got down pat!). Here's what I've learned (finally!). If the cost is not worth your time and effort, DON'T DO IT. I've slaved many, many hours on cakes that I've way undercharged for because I felt uncomfortable charging more. The only thing that you get of of doing this is frustration and stress from knowing you've worked you butt off for no return. I've found that saying no is much easier than you think. People that know what a decent cake is worth WILL call you and those are the customers worth having, the others are just looking to get something for nothing. I look at it this way - which is more worth the effort, one cake for $200 or 4 for $50 each?

jason_kraft Posted 23 Nov 2010 , 6:42pm
post #9 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by tmt578

I told her $95.00 ($2.50 per serving for 38 servings). Which does not include DELIVERY, FONDANT FLOWERS, AND FEW OTHER EDIBLE DESIGNS. SHE TOLD ME THAT WAS TOO HIGH!



I don't see what the problem is...if a customer (family or not) tells me the price is too high, I offer either a simpler design or a smaller cake to fit within their budget. If they're not OK with a simpler design or a smaller order, they don't get a cake.

Our price for that cake would probably be around $150.

ShaunPepe Posted 23 Nov 2010 , 7:02pm
post #10 of 22

I would definately not charge anything less than $95. I am just getting into selling cakes and it is hard to figure out pricing. Your dress sounds like alot of work, there is no way I would make the cake for less. If she still complains tell her no.

KittyPTerror Posted 23 Nov 2010 , 7:51pm
post #11 of 22

I agree with the other posters...

I would ask her what she's looking to spend and then tell her what you can do for that. For $55, I could do a really neat sheet cake with fresh strawberry filling with a FBCT and borders- which is still a significant family discount.

I'd be kind of insulted if I were you and she kept insinuating that you were over-charging your own cousin. I would charge at least $150 and probably $200- especially with the fresh fruit and what a pain whipped cream icing is. Carving, tiers, 3-d figures, those things are expensive and time-consuming. Of course, she doesn't know any of that because she's not an expert. You are. She sounds like one of those people who's never going to be satisfied anyway, and making a cake for those kind of people is always an exercise in tolerance. Good luck!

cakesbycathy Posted 23 Nov 2010 , 10:44pm
post #12 of 22

Give her the price and tell her she can take it or leave it.

Torts Posted 23 Nov 2010 , 11:03pm
post #13 of 22

Ok completely off topic, but for a laugh, when I first saw this post I was thinking PETA... animal rights. I couldn't understand why she would expect such a low price for a vegan cake but then was requesting whipped cream- so thought maybe she's just vegetarian. Anyway as I tried to process all of this information, I realized it was pIta and not pEta. Ha-ha-ha clearly I need sleep and should stop reading environmental and animal law cases. icon_redface.gif

brincess_b Posted 23 Nov 2010 , 11:20pm
post #14 of 22

the problem is you are letting her push you around now. you told her your price and she said no - but is still sending you other pics hoping for a magically cheaper price. you need to make a stand and find out what her budget is and TELL her what she can get.
kudos for telling her to use the other bakery - just keep standing firm! if she doesnt get it, just dont reply to her messages with anything other than 'this is what i can do for $50' - copy and pasted!
xx

mareg Posted 24 Nov 2010 , 3:41am
post #15 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by brincess_b

the problem is you are letting her push you around now. you told her your price and she said no - but is still sending you other pics hoping for a magically cheaper price. you need to make a stand and find out what her budget is and TELL her what she can get.
kudos for telling her to use the other bakery - just keep standing firm! if she doesnt get it, just dont reply to her messages with anything other than 'this is what i can do for $50' - copy and pasted!
xx


I agree.

tmt578 Posted 24 Nov 2010 , 4:28pm
post #16 of 22

CCer's,

You all how no idea how I truly appreicate this website. Its hard enough as an cake artist to get the business that we get when we are home bakers or hobby bakers! Being able to vent and ask when we are wrong by PEOPLE WHO ARE LIKE US (bakers) is just wonderful! For everything we need answers, opinions, advice, sympathy for... THERE IS A FORUM FOR THAT! I really appreciate all of you!

OH.. MIGHT I ADD THE CONCLUSION: My cousin who makes me sick ends up calling me, we talked and I told her I'd do the cake, MY VERSION OF THE CAKE, but she would have to pay for ALL THE INGREDIENTS. I told her I wasn't spending a lick of my money for anything I needed. I would use my supplies (knifes, turntables etc), but not even a pinch of salt that belonged to me! I told her ALL CAKES ARE EXPENSIVE REGARDLESS OF SIZE! She picked and tried to get her terms and the like, but she finally agreed! I told her I would do whatever size cake she wanted and NOT charge labor, but she would pay for all the ingredients, do the shopping and I would do what I wanted for her! I'll post when its done! Thanks again CCer's!

indydebi Posted 24 Nov 2010 , 4:39pm
post #17 of 22

making her do the shopping is EXCELLENT!!!!

playingwithsugar Posted 24 Nov 2010 , 5:02pm
post #18 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kitagrl

I'm in Philly area and I don't know where she got a price of $55 for ANY cake unless it was a Sam's Club sheet cake...its not that cheap to live here! Maybe slightly cheaper than DC but not much....she could not have gotten that quote from anyone reputable.

Sometimes people lie though...I had someone call me...I was booked...I gave NO price....so I sent her to a cake friend and this person lied to my cake friend saying I quoted a certain (lower) price, trying to get my cake friend to give her the same "deal". But my cake friend knew very well that wasn't my price and wouldn't give in. I hadn't even given a price at all since I was booked for the date, so the lady just flat-out lied.




Kitagrl - You were the first person I thought of when I saw Philly was mentioned.

I had a friend of a relative call me a couple of months ago, asking for a sweet 16 cake for her daughter. I don't normally sell cakes, but after reading the forums here for years, I know what my ingredients are worth, so I quoted her $500 for 100 serves, including custom decorations. She told me that she got a quote from Duff for less than that. I told her that his website states he has a $1000 minimum for his cakes, and if she can get a Duff cake for less than my quote, she can gladly spend the gas and 8 hours round trip to get it from him. Never heard from her or the relative again. I say good riddance to bad rubbish.

tmt578 - stick with your price. She'd spend $4-5.00 on a slice of strawberry shortcake in any diner in Philly, more in a finer restaurant. Besides, if you bend on your price this time, she will expect you to bend all the time. And then she'll tell the whole family about it, and they'll want you to bend, too.
Theresa icon_smile.gif

indydebi Posted 24 Nov 2010 , 5:31pm
post #19 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by playingwithsugar

She'd spend $4-5.00 on a slice of strawberry shortcake in any diner in Philly, more in a finer restaurant.



http://cateritsimple.blogspot.com/
As my latest blog articles states, they go math-dumb. "A $4 cup of coffee isn't a lot of money .... unless you're paying for 200 of them."

Math-Dumb. dunce.gif

jenmat Posted 24 Nov 2010 , 5:42pm
post #20 of 22

I actually had a cousin tell me that she couldn't see why I was charging her so much. "We're family, I don't see what the problem is, don't you think its crazy to spend that much on a CAKE?"

I said, "Yes, I do, that's why I learned to do it myself. My time is worth something. If you weren't a family member I'd charge you XXX more." She shut up.

When its for family, I am quickly learning to run for the hills.

CakeDiva101 Posted 24 Nov 2010 , 6:10pm
post #21 of 22

I have been in a similar position with a family member ( my MIL )and I was all stress out and all mad. Then I realized it was all MY faut! I allowed her to push me around. That was before I joined CC. So, not long ago, when she came at me again for a free cake that I just had to make for her friend and that would be another picture I would have for my portfolio I told her: I have about 200 pictures in my portfolio, I no longer have to work for free to add to it. Family or not. This is the price , your friend can take it or leave. Or maybe you want to pay for your friends cake. Well, she didn't and I went on to take a paying client. She also never asked me to do anything for free anymore. icon_wink.gif

brincess_b Posted 24 Nov 2010 , 6:46pm
post #22 of 22

next step is to get her to sit in purely to do the dishes and dogsbody work!
xx

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