Kitagrl Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 12:27pm
post #1 of

I have a previous customer that wants 200 cake pops decorated like bakerellas sheep pops.

I can make cake pops, that's fine, I have just never quoted an order before. I estimated $4-$5/each, kind of trying to go along with what I would charge for a cupcake with equal work...but she wants a sample of my cake (again, whatever, even though previous customer haha) so I figured this one time I'd go ahead and actually make up a few of them to see how time consuming they are as well as let her try them out. I don't mind this one time.

She did write me and tell me that a lady out where she lives (her wedding is going to be here but she lives across country) quoted her $3/ea for individually wrapped sheep pops and made $2/ea wrapped hello kitty pops for a coworker. I dunno....that quote is $600 for 200 individually wrapped cake pops and while I haven't tried them yet...I figured 2 minutes per pop is still about 7 hours of work and that's not counting baking and rolling...and that's not counting any issues that make some pops take longer than 2 minutes.

How much are the Starbucks ones? Aren't they like $1.50 each or something just dipped in sprinkles? My cupcakes here START at $2.50 each and that's for a cupcake with a swirl of icing and maybe some sprinkles, so I'm not sure how I can sell customized cake pops for only .50 more....I dunno. How much of a pain are these sheep gonna be?

Thanks!!!!

58 replies
goodiegoddess Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 1:03pm
post #2 of

I think that 2 minutes per cakepop is a good estimate. I think that $5 is a little high for cakepops. I have dont custom cakepops and I charge $3 each as well. If she wanted them packaged I would charge $1 for cello bad and ribbon.

My cupcakes are $2.50/simple buttercream swirl as well and most of my clients are good with $3 cakepops.

That many sugar pearls can get $$$. The only other advice I have is that these little guys can be a little tricky. If that chocolate is not at the perfect temp the pears are a pain. To hot and they run off, to cold and they don't stick. I would try them out first before I gave her a final quote.

Good luck!

Kitagrl Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 1:07pm
post #3 of
Quote:
Originally Posted by goodiegoddess

I think that 2 minutes per cakepop is a good estimate. I think that $5 is a little high for cakepops. I have dont custom cakepops and I charge $3 each as well. If she wanted them packaged I would charge $1 for cello bad and ribbon.

My cupcakes are $2.50/simple buttercream swirl as well and most of my clients are good with $3 cakepops.

That many sugar pearls can get $$$. The only other advice I have is that these little guys can be a little tricky. If that chocolate is not at the perfect temp the pears are a pain. To hot and they run off, to cold and they don't stick. I would try them out first before I gave her a final quote.

Good luck!




Yeah I'm concerned about the price of the supplies AND it being tricky.... I can get a wedding cake for $600 which will take a third of the time of these cake pops...so...I guess I'm not sure if I can justify price matching in this case....

I told her I'd make a few practice ones for her to taste but I'm warning her it may be $4-$5 each...do not want her to waste the time coming to a tasting without being aware I may be more expensive.

brenda549 Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 1:25pm
post #4 of

I made those sheep cake pops over the winter holidays. They take a little longer than 2 minutes each. At least until you get into a groove while making them. Those sugar pearls can be a little pricey as well. And adding on individually wrapping all of them? I would easily quote no less than $5 each.

Kiddiekakes Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 4:05pm
post #5 of

Yup..I agree..I just made cakepops as we speak and did I tell yah...I really don't like doing them..They are time consuming and don't always go as fast as you think.If the coating is to thin it runs off and too thick it hard to cover without pulling.Those little sheep ones will be much longer to do and those little pearls are expensive..I would say no and get a wedding cake order instead...If you do decide to do theem..I would charge $5.00 each..Little Buggers!!!LOL

crushed Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 4:32pm
post #6 of

Oh my Word! I just looked at a photo of those cakepops and I can't even IMAGINE making 200 of them. I think my eyes would cross permanently and I would pass out. Charging $5 each isn't too much when you take into consideration time and materials. I doubt that she'll be excited about shelling out $1000 for cakepops, but that is just what I think you would have to charge to make this worth your while.

I would gently but firmly suggest something else to this client because it just isn't cost effective for her or you.

WykdGud Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 4:47pm
post #7 of

I think $5 apiece is a little too steep. I don't think I could charge more than $4 myself... especially if you aren't really experienced making them. That's like a beginner decorator charging $10/serving just because it would take them twice as long as someone more experienced. Doesn't make sense to me.

imagenthatnj Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 4:56pm
post #8 of

Kitagrl, do you think that other person is using the BabyCakes machine? A lot of people are using it lately. But that machine makes balls out of cake, baked right in there. I just ordered 3, for family only. Not sure, but that might be an easier way to make them, especially for the people who don't like the frosting/cake combination and expect real cake instead, moist and not that sweet, inside.

http://cakecentral.com/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=714521&postdays=0&postorder=asc&&start=0

I still think I would go crazy with all those sugar pearls.

motherofgrace Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 4:57pm
post #9 of

Wow $5..... that is a little steep. Cake pops are my business. For those I would be charging $3-$3.50 at the most.

Kitagrl Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 6:00pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by WykdGud

I think $5 apiece is a little too steep. I don't think I could charge more than $4 myself... especially if you aren't really experienced making them. That's like a beginner decorator charging $10/serving just because it would take them twice as long as someone more experienced. Doesn't make sense to me.




I'm an experienced decorator but offering something off menu as a favor...which means it will cost a little more than someone who makes it their business.

My cake pops will look just as good as anyone else's, they will just be harder to make because I'm not set up to do it regularly.

Why charge $5/ea for a fancy cupcake and not that much for a cake pop that takes the same amount of work? After all, a cake pop has about the same amount of cake as a cupcake....but its just squooshed up. haha. And after buying sticks, wrappers, and ingredients, its the same cost, too.

imagenthatnj Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 6:08pm

It also has to do with where you're located. A cake pop price around Philly and New York will be different from other places and countries. If I go downstairs right now, I'll be paying $3.75 for a cupcake, not decorated, just cupcake and frosting, not even sprinkles. And those take no effort.

I don't know where the lady lives, but she's probably coming to a more expensive area to have her wedding. So if prices can't be matched to the ones around her, she might just have to bring her pops from where she lives. They are a lot of work.

jason_kraft Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 6:10pm

Don't compromise your price based on what competitors are charging, especially if the price is significantly below a product with a similar cost structure. If you have a lot of idle time it might be worthwhile to reduce your price a little, but it looks like you're already quite busy so there's no need to compromise.

Charging what your time is worth is a win-win (again assuming you have enough orders to keep busy): if you get the order you are paid appropriately, and if you lose the order you can replace it with another order with similar profitability. Lowering the price is a lose-lose: you are pretty much guaranteed to get the order, but at the cost of making less profit on a more labor-intensive product.

Kitagrl Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 6:11pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by imagenthatnj

It also has to do with where you're located. A cake pop price around Philly and New York will be different from other places and countries. If I go downstairs right now, I'll be paying $3.75 for a cupcake, not decorated, just cupcake and frosting, not even sprinkles. And those take no effort.

I don't know where the lady lives, but she's probably coming to a more expensive area to have her wedding. So if prices can't be matched to the ones around her, she might just have to bring her pops from where she lives. They are a lot of work.




Thanks...I think that's part of it too. I am just outside Philly and my pricing is about equal to the other cake shops around (not sure about cake pops...but gee, a Starbucks one is mass produced and still like what, $1.50? Undecorated?). I just can't justify charging less for a really super cute cake pop than I do for a hand decorated cupcake that takes just as much time (if not a bit less time).

Kitagrl Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 6:14pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by jason_kraft

Don't compromise your price based on what competitors are charging, especially if the price is significantly below a product with a similar cost structure. If you have a lot of idle time it might be worthwhile to reduce your price a little, but it looks like you're already quite busy so there's no need to compromise.

Charging what your time is worth is a win-win (again assuming you have enough orders to keep busy): if you get the order you are paid appropriately, and if you lose the order you can replace it with another order with similar profitability. Lowering the price is a lose-lose: you are pretty much guaranteed to get the order, but at the cost of making less profit on a more labor-intensive product.




Thanks! That's what I was kind of thinking but I felt bad quoting a price that I have not seen yet for cake pops (although I don't really follow pricing for that) but I assumed it should be about equal to cupcake pricing as far as level of detail. I was just taken aback by the $3 quote. My initial quote not knowing anything was starting at $2/each just for plain dipped and maybe a couple sprinkles, unwrapped.

imagenthatnj Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 6:23pm

Click on the Designer Pops link.

http://www.taylormadepantry.com/Flavors_and_Pricing.html

Prices: $3.50 to $4.50

None of the designs involve those pearls.

Kitagrl Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 6:25pm

If she does still go ahead with the tasting, I may even see if she's interested in me using the white nonpareils instead...will have to see how they look...I can't imagine biting through those pearls anyway...ouch! Even the Bakerella site says they are a tad "too crunchy" for her preference....

cakeandpartygirl Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 6:37pm

I took a look at those and I am sorry but......... I wouldn't charge any less than $5 for those. Honestly like you were saying those are going to take time. As far as getting the pearls in bulk can you order from CK to see if it would be any lower?

imagenthatnj Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 6:57pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kitagrl

If she does still go ahead with the tasting, I may even see if she's interested in me using the white nonpareils instead...will have to see how they look...I can't imagine biting through those pearls anyway...ouch! Even the Bakerella site says they are a tad "too crunchy" for her preference....




Yes, they're hard! I have a bottle of those here at my office, that I got at Williams-Sonoma, and even though I keep on eating them a little at a time, I'm always afraid that it will cost me a visit to the dentist.

Kitagrl Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 7:05pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by imagenthatnj

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kitagrl

If she does still go ahead with the tasting, I may even see if she's interested in me using the white nonpareils instead...will have to see how they look...I can't imagine biting through those pearls anyway...ouch! Even the Bakerella site says they are a tad "too crunchy" for her preference....



Yes, they're hard! I have a bottle of those here at my office, that I got at Williams-Sonoma, and even though I keep on eating them a little at a time, I'm always afraid that it will cost me a visit to the dentist.




Ugh...I can just see fifty crowns being broken at this lady's wedding. haha. I'll have to discourage the use of such widespread pearls.... you couldn't possibly eat that cake pop through all of those....

WykdGud Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 8:19pm

How about the white Sixlets? Or would those be too big?

Kitagrl Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 8:21pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by WykdGud

How about the white Sixlets? Or would those be too big?




Probably too big...Hmm I did see white coated sunflower seeds at Michaels...wonder if those would look weird?

ladyellam Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 8:33pm

What if you took 1/2 buttercream 1/2 royal icing and piped them on? I know it would be tedious but at least they could bite through them without losing any teeth lol.

Or maybe pipe them on a sheet let them dry and then roll the cake pop around in them to make them stick? Sorry if my ideas are foolish but I just can't imagine trying to eat all of those pearl..ouch.

MamaMia808 Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 8:35pm

I agree. I personally don't put things on my pops that won't taste good with the cake so I wouldn't cover the pop with pearls or mints or anything that would taste funny with the cake. The piping would definitely be a lot of work but it'll taste amazing and you won't feel so bad about charging $5 per pop.

Kitagrl Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 8:37pm

I think the little white Wilton nonpareils might work okay.... we'll see if she even wants to consider the higher price first.

imagenthatnj Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 8:45pm

http://cakecentral.com/gallery/1567434

http://www.wilton.com/pops/bloggers-contest/vote.cfm

http://www.etsy.com/listing/68630419/moms-killer-cakes-cookies-sheep-cake

Kitagrl Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 8:51pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by imagenthatnj

http://cakecentral.com/gallery/1567434

http://www.wilton.com/pops/bloggers-contest/vote.cfm

http://www.etsy.com/listing/68630419/moms-killer-cakes-cookies-sheep-cake




I did see those last night...the closest to looking cute for this lady's purpose may be the tiny nonpareils...we'll see! Thanks!

MamaMia808 Posted 18 Apr 2011 , 8:54pm

Maybe cut mini marshmallows and stick them on the pop? It'll give a cute fluffy look! icon_wink.gif

CakeCasaNova Posted 19 Apr 2011 , 3:17am

I am in LA and I have a friend out here who does cake pops as a side business. It is just her and she charges $2.50 for regular pops and $3 for specialty pops that she bakes out of her home. She wraps hers too. I'm pretty certain the cost of living in LA is much higher than the Philly area too.

It sounds like from your post that this just isn't your forte and you are trying to make up for your inexperience with cake pops in price since it is more time consuming for you personally. That would be like a lawyer charging more per hour to handle divorce law when their specialty is criminal law because they don't know the statutes as well.

Just be honest with her that this isn't something you typically make and therefore it wouldn't be cost effective to hire you. Honesty goes a long way.

P.S. I totally agree with substituting the crunchy pearls (ouch!) with something easier on the teeth though icon_smile.gif

Kitagrl Posted 19 Apr 2011 , 3:24am
Quote:
Originally Posted by CakeCasaNova

I am in LA and I have a friend out here who does cake pops as a side business. It is just her and she charges $2.50 for regular pops and $3 for specialty pops that she bakes out of her home. She wraps hers too. I'm pretty certain the cost of living in LA is much higher than the Philly area too.

It sounds like from your post that this just isn't your forte and you are trying to make up for your inexperience with cake pops in price since it is more time consuming for you personally. That would be like a lawyer charging more per hour to handle divorce law when their specialty is criminal law because they don't know the statutes as well.

Just be honest with her that this isn't something you typically make and therefore it wouldn't be cost effective to hire you. Honesty goes a long way.

P.S. I totally agree with substituting the crunchy pearls (ouch!) with something easier on the teeth though icon_smile.gif




I am being honest with her that I am unable to offer her the price that was offered. icon_smile.gif

She is a repeat customer and says she prefers my cake flavors. Therefore if she is willing to pay extra to get my cake, then that's fine. If she chooses not to, that's perfectly understandable and fine as well. I don't think there's anything wrong with me charging what my time is worth, if someone is willing to pay it. I'm not forcing her to buy cake pops from me. LOL.

I don't do decorated cookies very often either, but I will do them for a customer if they ask. Just because I don't do them often doesn't mean I don't have the right to ask the price I feel is fair for my time.

CakeCasaNova Posted 19 Apr 2011 , 3:59am

Agreed, you should always charge what you think your time is worth, but after reading all the posts and your responses, it seems that this particular type of cake pop would take more of your valuable time verses someone else who has made them before. I think it may be possible that the cheaper quote she got is because this person is experienced in this specific pop rather than the cost being lower because of the area. Like I said my friend charges $2-$3 a pop and lives in LA. It is hard to beat that cost of living.

If you don't want to admit flat out to her that you have never made these sheep pops before, maybe split the cost difference and charge her $4? Or recommend to her someone in your area whose primary business is cake pops and would be more in line with her budget. It sounds like you would rather do a cake anyway that is less work for you and the same money as what she wants to pay. That sounds like it might be a win-win for both of you.

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