I'm an at home licensed cake baker. I've had to order a couple of cake kits from DecoPac and other places to fulfill character cake requests. My question is, do I also charge the customer the shipping cost of that kit to reach me? So far the kits I've purchased are no more than $4.95. But they charge me $7 in shipping! I don't have any reason to order the $75 or more to reach FREE shipping status. That would be way too much inventory for me to hold and never knowing if it would get used and I can't afford that. So far I've eaten the 7 bucks and only passed on the $4.95 to the customer because I feel bad. Ttrust me though, I've gotten a lot better about the "am I good enough to charge this much" guilt. My base price on a double layer quarter sheet is $35. Add the $4.95 to it and tax and you're at $42+. I am priced spot on with all the other custom bakers in my area and I'm proud of my work. But to then add that $7 also, puts it at a $50 cake for a 9x13. Is this ethical or just a normal thing to do? I don't know.... On the other hand when I sit back and think about it, licensed and copyrighted ANYTHING is just going to cost more, period. That's how the world works. So if the customer wants a deliciously home made, non-store fakey buttercream tasting cake, and they want it to be Cinderella or whatever, they're just going to have to pay. Thoughts on what to do with these shipping charges?? Thank you! Sorry so long, had to get all thoughts out, so you know where I'm at with it. :)
Look at it this way...It costs you $11.95 to buy what the customer needs, not $4.95. If you didn't need to buy it for that customer, you wouldn't spend the money. So the customer should pay for not only it, but a little extra for your time to order it.
I sell flowers to other decorators and I completely expect them to charge the customer more than what they paid me for them, that's just normal procedure.
I charge it to the customer. I recently purchased sports logos and they were $11 each with licensing fee. I charged $15 per logo. I had time and gas in that. If I have to purchase anything specific to one order that i can't see another use for they will pay for the whole cost. I'm doing a 10" cake for $128. But that's the world of custom they wanted multiple sports logos and a fondant logo (not a copyrighted image) on top. When my husband took the order the man said I know it will be a triple digit price and I'm ok with that. We were upfront and said logos will cost more we have to pay licensing fees. So just make note of it in your prices that character cakes will be at an increased price. Don't feel bad about it and kudos to you for getting the licensed material.
The shipping is part of the process to make the cake, I don't like shipping charges but they are a cost of doing business and should be included as part of your cost of the cake.
Yes, I'd charge shipping. I had a bride recently order just 2 weeks before her wedding and she had to pay an extra £30 just because of the expedited shipping needed from the 4 suppliers. That's the way it is.
The only time I don't pass the charge completely onto the customer is for bespoke equipment. I had a bride want a specific cake lace mat recently. I only have one (I don't use the stuff very often) so I charge her 50% and I pay 50% because I can use it again. But, I would never have spent that £30 if it wasn't for her, so she has to pay some...
Good grief. Yes. Charge for your expenses + some to cover the time and effort.
Thank you for the replies. Appreciate you all! I will update my policies!