Am I Overcharging??

Business By lisasnider Updated 9 Jul 2015 , 7:19pm by lisasnider

lisasnider Posted 9 Jul 2015 , 2:18am
post #1 of 13

I am a home baker and someone asked me for a quote on an 8 inch fondant covered barnyard themed cake (wish I could upload the picture). It was topped with a 3D sculpted barn and a few little fondant animals. I said $127...$3.50/serving plus $50 for the sculpting. She said some local bakeries quoted her $61 to $68 plus tax. Is my price just ridiculous? What am I doing wrong? Should I charge less for sculpting? I know pricing is the hardest part and heavidly dependent on region..I've been struggling with it for a while. Any help or input would be appreciated!

12 replies
cakesbycathy Posted 9 Jul 2015 , 2:29am
post #2 of 13

IMO your pricing was fine.  I would have charged the same.  Bottom line is most people do not understand the amount of work involved and want to pay Walmart prices for Pintrest style cakes.

As far as her telling you what other bakeries quoted's entirely possible she was quoted that by someone who really undercharges.  It's also possible she picked a number she wants to pay and is hoping you'll come down and match it.

Jeff_Arnett Posted 9 Jul 2015 , 2:48am
post #3 of 13

Seriously....what kind of sculpting job can she get for that price?  I'd have to see it...and the person willing to do it....for that price. 

 I'd be more in the $150 range on a cake like that, so if your skills are up to par, stand your'll attract the people who really want the extra attention to detail, not just a cake for cheap!


Jedi Knight Posted 9 Jul 2015 , 2:52am
post #4 of 13

Was it sculpted or hand-modeled?

lisasnider Posted 9 Jul 2015 , 3:00am
post #5 of 13

Jedi Knight, I don't know what the bakeries would do, but I would hand model it. Use rice krispies covered in fondant for the barn and fondant or modeling chocolate for the animals.

Pastrybaglady Posted 9 Jul 2015 , 6:31am
post #6 of 13

$61 for a cake like that is ridiculous.  If she found it that cheap why is she asking you?  

lisasnider Posted 9 Jul 2015 , 6:36am
post #7 of 13

She said she was getting quotes from different places and would like to support a home baker..I guess she thought it mugh be cheaper? Is there any way to upload a photo? I'd like everyone to see the picture she sent me to make sure my price was reasonable.

Pastrybaglady Posted 9 Jul 2015 , 6:45am
post #8 of 13

Can you make a link to it?  That's the easiest way.   Regardless of the picture you are not overcharging.  Bargain shoppers are not your customers.

mccantsbakes Posted 9 Jul 2015 , 6:54am
post #9 of 13

I recently did an 8" cake, fondant covered with a few gumpaste flowers and a modeled bird and charged around what you quoted for yours.   At first I thought I was way over (reason being was that it was my first attempt with gumpaste flowers and haven't really gauged what they go for and how much time they *should* take etc) I thought for sure that I would be laughed at for quoting that.   I was wrong.   Not one balk about the price. 

Someone willing to do it for 61 dollars is grossly undercutting themselves.  Sadly, that bakers work may even be fantastic and not "cheap wal mart quality"   I know in the past I have been "that" baker who agreed to do a cake for pennies.....sigh.   It's a lousy feeling to invest so much work into a project to barely cover cost.    Personally, I would rather turn down a cake than undercut myself.  

As for uploading a picture, if you have a link, you can paste it on the thread otherwise I think you have to load it to the gallery and then paste the link on the thread.

mccantsbakes Posted 9 Jul 2015 , 7:33am
post #11 of 13

Super cute cake!   

I won't go into a big old discussion about how to price things because there are many factors that play into what to price your work at.  

What stands out for me, is the time that would be spent on this.  I counted 8 colors of fondant that would need to be kneaded.   Let's say you can do each in 5 minutes, that's 40 minutes of time.     (I doubt i could do them that fast...but I feel like I am slow). I  see the little barn animals.....let's say you can knock them out in 30 minutes each plus their little presents....that's an hour.    And the barn, could you do the RKT and fondant and all the hand details on that in an hour?  2?  What about the custom name plate and the fence border? Do you need to order that script? Will you hand cut it from a you have a fancy silhouette cutter thingy....How long would that take to cut by hand if that's what you have?  

Consider the baking of the cake, leveling, long does that take you?   Clean up?  

Add up what you think it would take and then think about how much your time is worth if you don't already have a set rate.  

Then add up how much money you are putting into ingredients.   

100 bucks isn't sounding too crazy now is it? 61 dollars sounds downright blasphemous now doesn't it? 

and I didn't even cover the whole use of electricity and water, liability insurance on a business, advertising costs and the whole gamut of other things that factor into a cake business that need to be spread over each cake to make a profit.  

I don't think you are overcharging at all, especially now that I have seen the cake inspiration.  

Good luck and charge your worth! 

dkltll Posted 9 Jul 2015 , 4:50pm
post #12 of 13

I did a cake very similar to this (Farmville) for my Mom's birthday, just a small 8x8 square with a barn, garden and some animals. That cake took me days to make and cost me more than $60 to make. My question is: are you willing to make this cake for less than $70? My first thought when I looked at the pic was "Hell No!" LOL I think your pricing is fine. Customers like this are the ones that will pick at everything and never be happy. Don't devalue yourself or your art. 

lisasnider Posted 9 Jul 2015 , 7:19pm
post #13 of 13

Thank you all so much for your input! It makes me feel so much more confident!

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