Hello fellow cake lovers. I have had a commercial kitchen on my residence for a year and have made the decision to open a store front. The lease is signed and renovation work has begun. I have most all of the equipment I need with the exception of a display case, second mixer, and coffee equipment. I am considering leasing these items. What are your thoughts on leasing versus buying? What about packaging? I dream of beautiful blue boxes with my logo but havent had much luck with finding a supplier. How about software? Is there one that stands out as exceptional? Any advice or input would be appreciated greatly thank you in advance...the knowledge of the bakers on here is amazing and inspiring!
Hello! Congrats on the decision to open a store! We just opened ours a few weeks ago.
As far as renting versus buying equipment, we really didn't find much option to rent, so we bought everything, but we got really good deals on some gently used stuff.
For packaging, we use white wax lined bags for cookies and single bars. The rest we have boxes for, which we get from brpboxshop.com. They have good prices and free shipping, which is really nice! We get their natural brown ones and put our stickers with our logo on them to make them our own. People really seem to like the boxes, they're a nice touch to give you a more professional look.
If by software, you mean accounting software, we use Quickbooks for Retail. It can be a little challenging to navigate at first, but overall it's a great product and helps you keep track of cash in, cash out, taxes, etc. HTH!
Hello and Congrats!!
I agree that buying 'gently used' is the way to go. I know many start up bakeries that have done this with little regret. Not sure where you could even lease commercial kitchen equipment.
Boxes: ordering printed boxes/bags is a big cost (and a wasted cost, in my opinion). This is a cost that will drive up the price of your items, when you are going to need to be price-competitive. If nothing else, I would rather put that extra $1.00 from printed boxes, into my pocket as profit.
You can buy really fancy stickers and put them on some nice boxes. That's what we did. You should contact a company that specializes in this. Don't buy sheet stickers, or you will pay through the nose! Find a place that will do roll stickers. You may have to pay a fee for the initial plate to have your design created (one time fee of $100 to $200). And I highly recommend you buy at least 5,000 stickers at a time. Buying bulk brings the price of the stickers down from $0.88/piece (when purchasing small amounts) to about $0.06/piece. Buying large bulk quantities of stickers, business cards, etc . . . really pays off long term in cost.
Congratulations! I too am opening a store front. I'm targeting May 1st. I'm in the same spot you are--lease signed, renovations started. I agree with the previous poster--I bought the white boxes and had stickers made. People really think they are custom boxes, but it is a heck of a lot cheaper. And, I had been just running of sheets of labels at FedEx Kinkos in small portions (20 sheets at a time) so that I could manage budget and not have a ton of labels around if I changed something. I also use Quicken but I'm wondering if I should switch it up and get the retail one. I've had a good experience with the one I have. I didn't even look into leasing equipment. In my opinion, it's just throwing money away and there is a lot of used equipment out there. I found a really great used dealer and bought everything I needed from them. There prices were really good and they were very mindful of my budget, even talking me out of a more expensive model for a quality, less expensive piece. Good luck! Now, I need to get off the computer and get crackin on what I should be doing for the shop!