I am just starting out & it never fails, every time I get a request for a cake I suddenly get really nervous about my pricing! I live in a small town & only use word of mouth advertising. Most people have seen my work before they order. But I always end up, at the last minute, knocking my price down before I send it out. Is it just me???
No, but you need to grow a backbone or you will end up being taken advantage of and really resenting it.
Assuming you are a legal baker, either get a website that lists your prices and/or have a price sheet that you can hand to people.
If anyone tries to talk you down in price you can always tell them "I understand if I am not in your budget. I understand if you need to go to Walmart for your cake." Then smile politely and keep your mouth shut.
Get a pricing system and use it. I use a matrix. Whatever it tells me I should charge that's what I charge. Numbers don't lie.
totally agree with the above. make a price list. even if its just an internal one for your use.
I've always posted my pricing right on my website, but I saw the benefit of having it "in writing' when it came to number of servings.
I kept a copy of the wilton wedding cake chart handy and when it came time to figure the size of the cake, I'd pull that out and make a production out of running my finger down the columns (even tho' I have the chart memorized) and would tell them "according to the serving chart ...." they could have a 3 tier square or a 4 tier round and it would serve this many or that many ... which would they prefer?
I notice right away I was getting less push back on how big the cake was or how many did it REALLY serve and a lot less hemming-hawing about it.
Its just like when you go in to get your hair done. A wash is $8. Add a cut to that and you add another $12. If you want it blow-dried and styled, its an addl $10 and so on and so on. The prices are posted on the wall in big black letters. If you want the extras, this is what its going to cost you. (Just making up numbers for an example so please don't laugh at me for underpricing!!
Plus it's easier on you to have all of this written down. Unless you have something really weird or a special tool you have to price out, with a written list, you should be able to give a quote right then and there or at least inside of a couple of hours.
Ok, that settles that. I am going to start working on a price list! Thank you all for the much needed advise.
I too find it difficult to give prices sometimes. Being in a small town myself too. It use to really bother me and I would spend way too much time making sure I am giving the best deal but after loosing a few cake orders anyways with a lower then I should have given price I said FORGET THAT, it\\'s not worth my time worrying over it. Most of my customers are now return ones or word of mouth customers. I find it hard when it comes to pricing and family. Any ideas on that topic?
If sticking to your prices is not one of your strengths, maybe you could recruit someone else to take care of the financial aspects of customer interaction. My wife (who is the pastry chef for our business) sometimes has a tough time saying \\"no\\" to people, so I decide whether or not we accept orders and I handle all \\"negotiations\\" with customers in terms of price.