silverdragon997 Posted 12 Mar 2011 , 7:38pm
post #1 of

I'm sitting around annoyed. I have a cake waiting to be picked up, they were supposed to be here at 11am. It's now 11:35, no person, no call, no email. I'm only going to be here for about another hour or so (not waiting for this customer, but doing other things), then I'm going to be out for the rest of the day. Looks like I may have a cake to take with me to the party I'm going to tonight. This must be why I should have people pay for their cakes ahead of time.

21 replies
weirkd Posted 12 Mar 2011 , 8:14pm
post #2 of

Definetly. Even if its a deposit. Because they wont pull that on you. And even if its a little cake. If its a wedding cake, then the whole thing paid for ahead of time. Unfortunatly it takes getting burned to realize that people can be jerks. Sorry it happened to you.

Bethkay Posted 12 Mar 2011 , 8:44pm
post #3 of

I had it happen to me when I first started selling cakes. The customer inconvenienced me twice over a two-day period. Every time she scheduled a pick-up, it was changed. She FINALLY sent someone over to fetch the cake on the day after it was supposed to have been served.

In the end, she served it two days later than planned to an entirely different group (and smaller number) of people than the cake was made for. She then had the nerve three days later to write to me and ask for a refund because she had lots of cake left over!

You can be I have since changed my policies on prepayment and pick-ups!

silverdragon997 Posted 12 Mar 2011 , 8:49pm
post #4 of

Wow, I can't imagine someone asking for a refund because they had cake leftover! That's crazy!

Luckily, in my case, the lady did finally show up at about noon and picked up her cake.

I do get 50% deposits for larger cakes. This one was a small one, my minimum, so I didn't bother. I guess I'll have to change that. I think it's Indydebi who said "no payment? Not turning on my oven."

cakesbycathy Posted 12 Mar 2011 , 9:01pm
post #5 of

I require any order that is $100 or less to be paid for in full when they order it.

When it comes to pick-ups I give them an hour time frame and tell them I am leaving immediately after that hour so if they aren't there within their pick-up time they will not be able to get their cake. Never had a problem.

baker101 Posted 12 Mar 2011 , 9:01pm
post #6 of

Join the club.. I just waited two extra hours for my pickup to showup. I find people think they can come whenever they feel like it, as if we have nothing better to do than wait for them all day.

mommachris Posted 12 Mar 2011 , 10:26pm
post #7 of

"Refund for left over cake."

icon_confused.gif Seriously!
Can you image asking your waiter to reduce your bill because you ordered too much food at a restaurant for friends that didn't show up for dinner.

Wow.
Just wondering what color the sky is in the fantasy world she lives in .

mommachris

Kitagrl Posted 12 Mar 2011 , 10:42pm
post #8 of

Years ago I had a no-show for cake ONE TIME.

Deposits...from then on...and its sure never happened again!

LisaR64 Posted 13 Mar 2011 , 1:10am
post #9 of

I normally require a deposit, and this past week I let it slide for a customer, and of course it came back to bite me. When I called, she said she was sick and wouldn't need the cake after all. When I pointed out the fact the cake was a custom order (about 12 hours of work), and that it was already done, she claimed she emailed me 2 days before to cancel, which I knew was a lie since I had spoken to her by phone more recently then that.

I guess there will always be people like her in this world, and I'll just consider it a lesson learned (or re-learned in this case).

scp1127 Posted 13 Mar 2011 , 10:13am

My orders are generated online, even the phone calls. All of my orders are paid before I even know I have them. People are getting used to "payment before product" because of the internet. This method solves all of these issues. The way mine works is that the order is generated just like any internet sale. Phone calls can be referred to the online order form or I can fill one out as I have them on the phone. Scammers and disrespectful people will always be with us. But this method of doing business sends these people elsewhere.

LaurenSprinkles Posted 9 Apr 2011 , 5:50pm

AWWWWWWWWW icon_sad.gif I'm so sorry that happened toyou but yes as stated before, i'm glad you have customers pay first!

cakesherry Posted 9 Apr 2011 , 6:08pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by scp1127

My orders are generated online, even the phone calls. All of my orders are paid before I even know I have them. People are getting used to "payment before product" because of the internet. This method solves all of these issues. The way mine works is that the order is generated just like any internet sale. Phone calls can be referred to the online order form or I can fill one out as I have them on the phone. Scammers and disrespectful people will always be with us. But this method of doing business sends these people elsewhere.



Would it be possible for you to explain this a little further? I wanted to have a PayPal option on my website, but am having a hard time convincing my husband and SCORE advisor that it's a good idea.

indydebi Posted 9 Apr 2011 , 6:15pm

cakesherry, why would they think its a BAD idea? icon_confused.gif

What I've told folks ......

"The deposit puts you on my calendar. The final payment is what turns on my oven." thumbs_up.gif

cakegirl1973 Posted 9 Apr 2011 , 6:47pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by cakesherry

Quote:
Originally Posted by scp1127

My orders are generated online, even the phone calls. All of my orders are paid before I even know I have them. People are getting used to "payment before product" because of the internet. This method solves all of these issues. The way mine works is that the order is generated just like any internet sale. Phone calls can be referred to the online order form or I can fill one out as I have them on the phone. Scammers and disrespectful people will always be with us. But this method of doing business sends these people elsewhere.


Would it be possible for you to explain this a little further? I wanted to have a PayPal option on my website, but am having a hard time convincing my husband and SCORE advisor that it's a good idea.




The only "downside" to PayPal is that they take 3% of the purchase as a fee. However, it costs nothing to enroll or to offer this as an option. I use PayPal to receive almost all of my payments. Funds are quickly deposited into your account, which is good. I love it--no worries about checks bouncing. I'd look into it further, if I were you.

LoveMeSomeCake615 Posted 9 Apr 2011 , 7:22pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by indydebi

cakesherry, why would they think its a BAD idea? icon_confused.gif

What I've told folks ......

"The deposit puts you on my calendar. The final payment is what turns on my oven." thumbs_up.gif




Love this! That's how we do it too. Regardless of what size cake it is, what it's for, etc, we get a deposit to secure the date and final payment 2 weeks before the event for a wedding and 1 week before for parties. No exceptions.

johnson6ofus Posted 9 Apr 2011 , 8:07pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by cakesbycathy

I require any order that is $100 or less to be paid for in full when they order it.

When it comes to pick-ups I give them an hour time frame and tell them I am leaving immediately after that hour so if they aren't there within their pick-up time they will not be able to get their cake. Never had a problem.




Tattoo this on your forhead. If you have their CASH (prepaid order) and you have their CAKE, YOU make the rules. And of course, as IndyDebi you says -the deposit gets you on the calendar, and the final payment turns the oven on.

Follow these two posted pieces of advice, and you will NEVER get burned (pun intended).

When my small business owner niece asks for advice about "being nice" or "making an exception"... I answer, "Only the deadbeats need an exception." All decent, good people follow the rules and understand why they are in place- only the deadbeats, losers, and whiners ask for "special" accommodations (pay you next week, pay you when I pick up, pay you when hell freezes over).

jason_kraft Posted 9 Apr 2011 , 8:23pm

We only require a deposit for wedding cake orders, most party cake orders (which is the majority of our business) are payable on pickup/delivery. In three years of business and several hundred orders we've only had one customer fail to pick up her cake (an 8", so no big loss). We've had two bounced checks, both of which we were able to recover from the customer plus the NSF fee.

Our business is slightly different from most since we are the only bakery many of our customers can safely order from, and they probably realize that failing to pickup a cake without a good reason means no more cake for them.

We have had customers show up without enough cash (we don't accept credit cards) asking to mail a check later, we kindly direct them to the nearest ATM. icon_smile.gif

louanne Posted 9 Apr 2011 , 10:18pm

i make sure people know exactly what time i close, and if hey are not at the shop by then i am only there for another 15 minutes and then i am gone, they can pick up theri cake the next day if they wish, but they will not get a refund. Granted i understand things happen and if people call and give me reasonable notice i will try to make other arrangements for pick up.

I have had one person actually not pick up an order and she walked in before i was actually open and in the shop working to set up, she ordered 36 cupcakes and 36 decorated cupcakes, i didnt even have register or anything yet so i told her she could pay when she picked them up, never showed, called several times, she is now on a list of people we do not take orders from, well shes the only one on the list and hopefully we dont have to add any more names

scp1127 Posted 9 Apr 2011 , 10:25pm

The order form is online. A customer orders and pays, just like an etsy order. You can email or call me if there are any questions and we can discuss the order. When we have what we want, the payment is still received online before I consider it an order. Everything but wedding cake type things are payment in full. You are going to pay a credit card fee wherever you go for the service. If you ask for cash, you are pegged as a tax evader. People just don't like to use checks and cash anymore. Paypal or any form of credit card payment legitimizes your business, and the customer knows they have some consumer protection. The IRS likes it because your revenue equals your bank deposits for that particular account. I offer cash payments. They can take them to my husband's medical office. This is important because he is well known and it is a safe place to hand over cash. I have a lock box there. They can also mail a check and the transaction will commence with the clearing of the check. I have not used either of these yet, but they are available.

I would suggest this method to anyone who feels uncomfortable asking for payment. No work can start without a payment. You have no choice. Your whole business is now invoice with payment oriented.

jason_kraft Posted 9 Apr 2011 , 10:36pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by scp1127

You are going to pay a credit card fee wherever you go for the service.



Are you referring to the customer or the merchant here? Most credit card merchant agreements specifically disallow charging customers extra for credit card fees, so you would need to build credit card fees into your asking price.

Quote:
Quote:

If you ask for cash, you are pegged as a tax evader.



Who is pegging who as a tax evader?

Quote:
Quote:

People just don't like to use checks and cash anymore.



Some people find it a little unusual that we don't accept credit cards, but it's never been a deal breaker. Sometimes people ask why, and once I explain that accepting credit cards = higher prices they usually understand my reasoning (a similar answer to when people ask why we don't have a retail shop).

cakegirl1973 Posted 9 Apr 2011 , 11:08pm

[quote="jason_kraft"]

Quote:
Originally Posted by scp1127


Quote:
Quote:

If you ask for cash, you are pegged as a tax evader.


Who is pegging who as a tax evader?




I'd like to know the answer to Jason Kraft's question, too. I have received cash payments from customers without a problem. And you can bet that every penny will be reported to the IRS. (I am finishing up my return this weekend. icon_smile.gif) Not everyone who is paid with cash is dishonest!

scp1127 Posted 10 Apr 2011 , 3:08am

If you ask to be paid in cash vs. check or credit card, it is an assumption that you are evading taxes. That is a general public assumption. I didn't make it up. The IRS will tell you that taking cash only as a form of payment is a red flag. Again, I did not make that up. That came straight from the IRS when I was a witness in a tax evasion case. I am not saying that your'e dishonest. But your customers may perceive your request as a means to keep the transaction off of your books. Too bad, but that is what it looks like. My daughter's tutor has all of the kids pay her cash even though we all know her. Her students are all at our private school and she tutors Calculus to honor students. There is only one reason she doesn't take checks. We aren't a high risk group for her. And we all assume she isn't reporting, even if she is.
.
When I said you are going to pay a credit card fee, I was referring to the merchant. There is going to be a fee by paypal, your bank, or anyone else that provides a service.

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