Is This Price Fair?

Business By Kelsey130 Updated 13 Apr 2014 , 5:14pm by MimiFix

Kelsey130 Posted 9 Apr 2014 , 5:42pm
post #1 of 26

AI was recently asked to do a 5 tier wedding cake, just basic cake flavors and smooth iced with white buttercream, no decorations. I quoted her $400 for this cake and was wondering what my fellow bakers thought of this. Any feedback is welcome, thanks!

25 replies
hmcakery Posted 9 Apr 2014 , 5:50pm
post #2 of 26

AWhat will be your tier sizes?

Kelsey130 Posted 9 Apr 2014 , 5:52pm
post #3 of 26

Abottom tier would be a 16 inch and top 6 inch. Still not sure on the middle 3 but probably 14, 10, and 8.

howsweet Posted 9 Apr 2014 , 6:02pm
post #4 of 26

First, you can't really give a final quote without knowing exactly what the cake is going to be.

 

Second, if you do the tier sizes you think you might be doing, that's $1.58 per serving. That's 252 servings. This person can afford to throw a party for 250 people and has found someone to do her cake for $400. She sounds very resourceful.

 

I would tell her the $400 was a terrible mistake - you don't know what you were thinking or it was a typo - and that it would be more like $1100.

hmcakery Posted 9 Apr 2014 , 6:03pm
post #5 of 26

AAccording to the Wilton care cutting guide, that will be about 252 servings. My rock bottom price for a plain, buttercream cake for 252 would be $3 per serving, absolutely no decoration. That's right in middle of the market range for my area, so my price would be $756.

AZCouture Posted 9 Apr 2014 , 6:04pm
post #6 of 26

AOver 200 servings?

costumeczar Posted 9 Apr 2014 , 6:04pm
post #7 of 26

oh no no no..that would be at least $1000 for buttercream and more for fondant.

AZCouture Posted 9 Apr 2014 , 6:11pm
post #8 of 26

ASo the answer is....no, no it's not a fair price at all.

Norasmom Posted 9 Apr 2014 , 6:13pm
post #9 of 26

And why undecorated, is she going to have someone else do it?  That might lead to a sticky situation.

Kelsey130 Posted 9 Apr 2014 , 6:14pm
post #10 of 26

AThis is why I asked on here, I gave her that quote and now she will not answer any of my emails. I thought I was giving her a "break" but was doing that intentionally because I am just starting out in this area and she was picking up, and doing all the decorations herself.

Norasmom Posted 9 Apr 2014 , 6:37pm
post #11 of 26

If you are a decorator, don't do the cake unless you charge a fortune for it.  I guess it could be considered purchasing a canvas, but artists don't sell their canvasses, they sell their art.

leah_s Posted 9 Apr 2014 , 7:02pm
post #12 of 26

Geez, no that's not a fair price.  Plain bc is the hardest of all finishes to do.  

Claire138 Posted 9 Apr 2014 , 7:06pm
post #13 of 26

Quote:

Originally Posted by leah_s 
 

Geez, no that's not a fair price.  Plain bc is the hardest of all finishes to do.  

 

 

☝︎

I agree

pastrypet Posted 9 Apr 2014 , 7:52pm
post #14 of 26

What if she decorates it into a wreck and then tells people you made the cake?

MimiFix Posted 9 Apr 2014 , 8:08pm
post #15 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelsey130 

... I gave her that quote and now she will not answer any of my emails. I thought I was giving her a "break" but was doing that intentionally because I am just starting out in this area and she was picking up, and doing all the decorations herself.

 

Then lucky you if she's not answering. Giving customers a break leads to big problems and lost revenue.

howsweet Posted 9 Apr 2014 , 8:34pm
post #16 of 26

ALost revenue in this case would mean giving away about $600. Based on the $1000 price. Do you like this person enough to give her that much money? So much work involved here, it might feel better to just write her a check.

Kelsey130 Posted 9 Apr 2014 , 8:42pm
post #17 of 26

AThank you everyone for getting back to be however this was not the discussion I was trying to get into so next time I will be more descriptive in my question. I understand my price was low but that was because of the discussion I had with her and since she has yet to respond I thought maybe I was wrong. I know material wise I would not be losing money on the cake.

I do really appreciate the people who made me realize letting someone else decorate one of my cakes is not a great idea, since I was not happy with that request to begin with.

howsweet Posted 9 Apr 2014 , 8:53pm
post #18 of 26

AWrong about what?

shanter Posted 9 Apr 2014 , 10:49pm
post #19 of 26

Quote:

Originally Posted by Kelsey130 

..... I know material wise I would not be losing money on the cake.
 

Now I'm confused. Don't you factor in your time and overhead?

costumeczar Posted 10 Apr 2014 , 12:14am
post #20 of 26

A

Original message sent by Kelsey130

Thank you everyone for getting back to be however this was not the discussion I was trying to get into so next time I will be more descriptive in my question. I understand my price was low but that was because of the discussion I had with her and since she has yet to respond I thought maybe I was wrong. I know material wise I would not be losing money on the cake.

I do really appreciate the people who made me realize letting someone else decorate one of my cakes is not a great idea, since I was not happy with that request to begin with.

Materials aren't the only "cost" to a cake, though. My food costs are about 15-20% of the cake selling price. But when i do my gross/net calculations at the end of the year I don't net 80% of my gross. Based on my net profits, if I had a cake that should be a $1000 cake and I sold it for $400, I would be losing money even if my food costs were only $150. I think the point of the responses you're getting is that the price isn't fair to you, not that it isn't fair to the customer!

AZCouture Posted 10 Apr 2014 , 1:12am
post #21 of 26

ADang it, yes...not fair to YOU!

costumeczar Posted 10 Apr 2014 , 1:19pm
post #22 of 26

Here's the blog post...remember that the point is that the cost of ingredients is only a part of pricing, since the time involved and time on things that aren't directly related to the cake itself count too. http://www.acaketorememberva.blogspot.com/2014/04/how-long-does-it-take-to-make-cakehow.html

ele by the sea Posted 13 Apr 2014 , 5:03am
post #23 of 26

Ditto!  I did that. A sore lesson but, I am just getting started on the selling part.

Always, remember you are providing a service and your time is worth at least 3x the cost of the ingredients.

Tammy0 Posted 13 Apr 2014 , 6:11am
post #24 of 26

AAh, I remember this feeling when I was first starting out (yesterday ;)) - That insecurity when a perspective client doesn't respond. Well, it turns out that a lot of people inquire, ask a million questions, ask for quotes, etc. and they really don't have any serious intentions of placing an order. That's why some people post on their websites, "Serious inquiries only!" I get people who already know my prices, go over all the details of what they want, I type everything up... and they still never place the order! I'm sure some people realize it's not in their budget, some find a replacement for less $$, some never really had any serious intentions - they just wanted to go over everything just in case and some just simply change their minds.

It took about 6 times for me to figure this out for myself ;).

howsweet Posted 13 Apr 2014 , 6:51am
post #25 of 26

I've actually run across a few people who just seem to enjoy discussing designs and pretending they are going to order. They usually contact you about 8 months before the party and will waste shameful amounts of your time.

 

Then there are the serious customers who want to plan their child's birthday party 6 months in advance. Right now the child is into mermaids, but in 6 months it will be something else. I have it happen all the time. On one hand I appreciate their planning early, but you just can't plan a kid's party that early. Not if you're going to take what the child wants into account.

 

I have a party planner that constant wants quotes from me, but only orders about once per every 5 quotes. I assume she sends the same request out to 10 bakers at once.

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