I need advice. I started selling cupcakes out of the commercial kitchen space I rent a few weeks ago. There is a bakery business in front and I sell my cupcakes daily out of the bakery case.
I come in and bake and frost one day then put everything in the freezer and they bring cupcakes out every morning. At first they were bringing them out early in the morning (7am) and leaving them out til close and then putting them back in the freezer and then out for one more day. Needless to say this didn't turn out to well. I got reports of dry cupcakes and a few customers asking for their money back.
We are now fixing this by bringing out cupcakes around 11 and then getting rid of any leftover so all cupcakes are only out one day. II feel awful, since I am not there every day I didn't realize things were getting dry because when I came by and spot tasted things they were all fine. All the box based mixes came out fine but my scratch mixes (red velvet, chocolate) were getting bad feedback fresh out of the freezer so I switched to all box based.
I need advice on how to get people to buy my cupcakes again. I am going to have samples available for people to try the cupcakes to know that they are not dry anymore. I am also going to bring a few cupcakes to the local business's on our street so they can try them and see they are not the same (we are in a pedestrian based area). Should I post anything on my facebook or twitter saying we have samples of our new and improved recipes or something to that effect?
What else would you recommend?
Yes, I would let everyone know that you've listened to customer feedback and taken steps to improve your recipe. Is there any way the bakery would allow a sign to be posted above some samples so that those that enter the business see it right away. Definitely post it on Facebook and Twitter as well.
Have a tasting day once a month. People come in, pay something minimal and can try any 4 flavours (mini cupcakes or something). Obv work out your costs, but the idea is for brides to come in and taste, the average joe as well, and its affordable
Posting on media is a good idea. But also important is to educate all the sales staff. Make sure they get to taste these items so when customers need help the staff can say how terrific the items are since "they tried them all."
I need advice. I started selling cupcakes out of the commercial kitchen space I rent a few weeks ago. There is a bakery business in front and I sell my cupcakes daily out of the bakery case. What else would you recommend?
Is the bakery case refrigerated? If so, I think this is the culprit. All of the local bakeries in my area sell the cupcakes at room temperature in a non-refrigerated case. The have a few samples on a cake plate with a cover, you pick which one, then they go back and pull on off of the proofing cart which has a plastic cover.
When I went to Sucre in New Orleans, they also had all of their cupcakes on a shelf in rubbermaid boxes. Still covered, but at room temperature. I think you should try that.
This also goes to show you that people think they prefer scratch cakes when they really don't.
Don't let the reviews get to you. I have some bad ones but I don't really care what others think because the next day I'll get a client that is really happy and they had the exact same thing as the person that left the bad review.
It is the freezer. When you place them in the freezer, the icing gets sweeter and the cupcake gets drier. You need to make at night, place them in an airtight container container in a room no higher than 71 degrees. In the morning, put icing on them and place them in the case (non-fridge). I would go there when they close and put them back in the container, if you don't trust them to do it. If they place them back in the airtight container at room temp, they will last, trust me. Don't change your red velvet and chocolate, try this out first, at your home and see for yourself. I made red velvet cupcakes once and forgot to take them out of town with me. When I got back home 7 days later, just out of couriosity, i tasted them. They were sooooo fresh. You would have never quessed they were a week old.
I would also place a sign outside announcing that the cupcakes are new and improved. I would hand out flyers for free cupcakes in the nearby businesses. They can be valid for 1 day only, maybe during the lunch hours, and the back can be a comment card they must feel out in order for the cupcake to be free.
Good Luck and I hope I was able to help!!!!! Hang in there,
I wouldn't say the freezer is the culprit by itself.. Maybe the freezing and thawing then refreezing, but not simply freezing them..
if the case is refrigerated that is likely the culprit.. If not, I would venture to say the repeated freezing AND sitting out.
all the ideas about how to reach out to customers sound excellent