Another Question About Prices!!

Business By beckalyn20 Updated 25 May 2015 , 1:20pm by -K8memphis

beckalyn20 Posted 19 May 2015 , 6:17pm
post #1 of 27

This is my first post on here! I usually just read, but decided it's that time! I have only been decorating cakes from my home for about a year now and starting to get busy with word of mouth. However, Im worried about my prices! Can someone please look at my pictures and tell me if I'm in the correct range? I have culinary school background ( not pastry lol that's another story) what I do know I have learned from books, Google, YouTube, and mistakes. Sorry the pictures are so big , not sure how to fix that yet. The pillow I charged 80.00 for 40 ppl the pink ruffle I charged 100.00 for 50 ppl, and the zebra 60.00. For 20 ppl, but Prob fed 30. Now I have a system of 2.00 per slice for bc and 3.00 per slice for fondant! Thank you for sticking through this long post!

26 replies
SquirrellyCakes Posted 19 May 2015 , 6:33pm
post #2 of 27

Your pictures didn't post.  Also you might want to add where you live as the going rate varies with where you live and what the competition charges. The types of cakes and ingredients and quality of ingredients and skill of decorating also play a role.  Just with the information you posted though, the prices sound low to me for most places.

-K8memphis Posted 19 May 2015 , 6:50pm
post #3 of 27

i think you should add a dollar (or more) to your prices to get you at the bottom of the decent reputable pricing ladder -- cakes sight unseen -- just to get your prices a bit more respectable for yourself -- you want to attract a clientele that will pay you for working hard for them -- not just for anybody who wants a custom cake --

and it's actually better if i haven't seen your cakes -- you have to believe they are worth that much -- doesn't matter what i think -- 

best to you -- if you bake it they will come :)



costumeczar Posted 20 May 2015 , 1:18am
post #4 of 27

your prices are too low for what you're describing design-wise.

beckalyn20 Posted 21 May 2015 , 2:06am
post #5 of 27

Thank yall for responding. Everyone says I'm too hard on myself. My photos should be uploaded now, is it ok to charge a little more even though I am not license. Its defiantly a goal, but I don't believe I'm at that point yet.

Jedi Knight Posted 21 May 2015 , 5:26am
post #6 of 27

Stop selling cakes until you get licensed and a solid pricing structure. 


The cakes are okay, but at that price you are losing money.

Have you costed out all of your ingredients and overhead, etc?

beckalyn20 Posted 21 May 2015 , 12:36pm
post #7 of 27

I have a spreadsheet with the breakdown of my ingredients, boards ect. Not my electric, or anything like that. I have looked up food laws and i am not able to find a solid answer, but if i get licensed dont i need a space to rent. im not able to rent a space much less pay for large appliances. (please dont judge, just looking for expert advice, i can not seem to get real honest advice from anyone with experience)

MsGF Posted 21 May 2015 , 12:43pm
post #8 of 27

Your prices are too low.   You will be working your butt off and making no money, and that will get old real fast.


You need to contact your local Health Dept and find out about your local Cottage Food Laws.  All States are different.  That is your first step.

beckalyn20 Posted 21 May 2015 , 1:17pm
post #9 of 27


Quote by @MsGF on 32 minutes ago

Your prices are too low.   You will be working your butt off and making no money, and that will get old real fast.


You need to contact your local Health Dept and find out about your local Cottage Food Laws.  All States are different.  That is your first step.

Thank you! I have been researching online, but calling would be better. I've been struggling about it , i never thought to pick up the phone. Smh

-K8memphis Posted 21 May 2015 , 2:06pm
post #10 of 27

because you don't want to develop a clientele that expects you to work for less than it's  worth -- it's a foray into futility -- if you want to continue to charge that low -- at least hedge yourself by supplying an invoice for every cake include the full (higher) price and then give a discount -- you can call it a 'portfolio discount' so that you can build your picture gallery but get yourself established properly -- don't establish your (potential) business on an under valued image of your work -- know what i mean?

i'm gonna sell $25 dresses for $15 because i am new at selling dresses -- then i will raise my prices when i'm established because i have invested my time and expertise -- because of that i will lose all my $15 customers and basically have to start over -- where's the sense in that?

beckalyn20 Posted 21 May 2015 , 7:44pm
post #11 of 27

Makes sense to me! I love the advice about the invoice , I want to be licensed, but I'm far from that step, but shouldn't I still charge ? sorry if this seems repetitive , I want to do this the right way , so many loops!

johnson6ofus Posted 22 May 2015 , 1:30am
post #12 of 27

#1 You will not be able to compete with WalMart prices. Don't chase the low price customers. 

#2 You will , at least at some point, want to "get legal". Some states are really expensive to do so. Identifying what state you are in (assuming USA) would help us help you. 

You need to set your prices at some level that is sustainable--- that is, at a level that you will WANT to work. Not at below minimum wage. Including shopping, clean up, delivery, etc.  You will have LOTS of "customers' as long as you give away (virtually) cakes. Will you have customers when the price is fair to you?

leah_s Posted 22 May 2015 , 2:28am
post #13 of 27

Yes, you want to be legal.  Why?  Because if something terrible happens - someone gets sick or even has an allergic reaction to your products, and the Health Department - and their lawyers find out you're working unlicensed 1) your home owners insurance is not going to cover you (running a business without a license) and 2) you've just put your savings, house and future at risk in a lawsuit. And 3) people are lawsuit-crazy.

leah_s Posted 22 May 2015 , 2:29am
post #14 of 27

What state are you in?  There's probably someone here who knows something about that state's laws.

beckalyn20 Posted 22 May 2015 , 12:31pm
post #15 of 27

Im in Texas, ok, so one more question.. For the time I'm not legal , I should be offering services for free? 

SquirrellyCakes Posted 22 May 2015 , 1:17pm
post #16 of 27

Apparently there is a cottage industry in Texas.  It was referred to in a post - Cottage Food Law Tx. Unsafe items? Cream Cheese Icing and others.  Matthewkryan kelly discussed Food Safety Net and provided a link where you can purchase recipes tested and approved recipes.  So it would be worth looking into whether your city or town allows you to bake and sell from your home.  And if they do, the link he provided may be beneficial to you.

www.lulu.com/shop/kelly-masters/come-and-bake-it/ebook/product-217801.48.html

I am Canadian so I don't know who you would contact there. I know here I contacted the city and public health.


beckalyn20 Posted 22 May 2015 , 2:10pm
post #18 of 27

Thank you everyone ! i truly appreciate it !  I will search some previous asked questions on here so i'm not repeating ! 

Jinkies Posted 22 May 2015 , 3:24pm
post #19 of 27

Hi beckalyn20!

I'm not in Texas but I do work from home.  Save yourself some time and call your city/town health inspector.  They will be able to tell you exactly what is required for you to legally sell cakes from home.  Although each state has laws, every single town/city has their own regulations as well.  Some are very strict and some are very lax.  Someone in the next town over from you may have completely different rules to follow.  I live in MA and have heard nightmares about what people have to go through to get legal here in other towns.  For me, it was pretty straight forward (food safety, business license, kitchen inspection, etc.) That is the best place to start.

Good luck!

beckalyn20 Posted 22 May 2015 , 3:31pm
post #20 of 27


Quote by @Jinkies on 6 minutes ago

Hi beckalyn20!

I'm not in Texas but I do work from home.  Save yourself some time and call your city/town health inspector.  They will be able to tell you exactly what is required for you to legally sell cakes from home.  Although each state has laws, every single town/city has their own regulations as well.  Some are very strict and some are very lax.  Someone in the next town over from you may have completely different rules to follow.  I live in MA and have heard nightmares about what people have to go through to get legal here in other towns.  For me, it was pretty straight forward (food safety, business license, kitchen inspection, etc.) That is the best place to start.

Good luck!

Thank you for the support!

Deborah49 Posted 22 May 2015 , 4:21pm
post #21 of 27

Beckalyn20- Your in luck. My wife and I are starting a home baking business in Texas ( mostly cookies ) so I have done extensive research into the Texas laws.  SB  81 in 2011 made it legal and HB 970 in 2013 made it better. All you need is an approved food safety training program. 

These are cheap and can be done online. You can find an approved list on the Texas Department of State Health Services website. To make it easier for you the one we chose was http://www.safewayclasses.com/index.php.  You don't need a licenses not even from your city. The law forbids any city, county or HOA from inspecting your home and they cannot prevent you from conducting a home baking business. Unless there are complaints of food safety. There are strict labeling requirements and food restrictions. For instance foods that need refrigeration. I don't see where I can make an attachment here, but you can google HB 970 or Texas Cottage food law. Also, several other sites are helpful like http://texascottagefoodlaw.com. Goodluck 

beckalyn20 Posted 22 May 2015 , 9:02pm
post #22 of 27

Thank you so much for the information!! Good luck on your business! 

johnson6ofus Posted 22 May 2015 , 9:52pm
post #23 of 27

Yes, lucky to be in Texas as far as a "start up" business. It can be done quickly, cheaply, and easily. But that is also a double edged sword as "everyone else" is also your competition. 

But still accept the PPS advise about not being so cheap that you are burned out in a month and you really add up what it costs you both in time and money. Just because you pulled 4 eggs from your refrigerator to bake doesn't mean they are "free".  And 1 teaspoon of real vanilla here and there really adds up too... :)

Deborah49 Posted 24 May 2015 , 5:51pm
post #24 of 27

Quite right. I recently subscribed to a service that is a sponsor here on Cake Central so I feel ok to mention it. It being CakeBoss. I am still exploring the service and watching the tutorials. My verdict is still out on it, but it looks promising.

Jinkies Posted 24 May 2015 , 6:52pm
post #25 of 27

I just got CakeBoss as well and I love it.  What I love most is the paypal invoicing- so easy for both myself and clients and much more professional.  Just my opinion, but I think people are more comfortable spending big bucks when you have a more professional set up.  

If you decide to go legal, I would recommend getting your software or invoicing in place before you start.  Once the orders start rolling in, you don't want to be messing with that.

beckalyn20 Posted 24 May 2015 , 9:34pm
post #26 of 27

I have actually been thinking about cake boss, however so many reviews said that a basic spreadsheet would do, so that's what I did and I did a great job breaking down my recipes, however adding in time, and the small extras are my main downfall. Which has got me re-thinking. After reading all these helpful responses I believe I will go back and think about raising prices, I def. do not want to be known as cheap. I'm also going to study and read over the license information. I still have a ways to go and practice is needed before I make it legit. 

-K8memphis Posted 25 May 2015 , 1:20pm
post #27 of 27

deborah49 -- you can mention any company you want on here it's just that companies cannot mention themselves unless they pay for advertising is how that goes

Quote by @%username% on %date%

%body%