Hi everyone! I know this is kind of an old common scenario topic. I know each and everyone of you here has already encountered this from their customer/clients, my apology for starting a thread like this common topic again. I just need to get it off from my chest. I have a customer, who had been ordering a cake from me. This time, it's her 3rd time to order a cake from me she wanted a sheet cake and giving me instructions about what she want for the design/style and I answered, "Ok I can do that". She then told me that she found out that there's a store at the local area who make a cake and also told me that the customized cake (police) was just cheap. She told me this because she ordered a customized fondant cake from me (police) for her husband and my pricing was a bit more different than that cheap price cake that she told but I based my pricing for the total amount of my expenses and the time i spent for working that cake. Other than that she showed me the picture of a cake that she compared to mine, I told her mine has a police badge and I applied edible luster dust for the badge plus there's sleeves while that one in the picture has no sleeves and no police badge. Plus there's pockets in each side and the taste of my cake is wonderful it's not commercial like the other cake you bought in store.
She told me that their sheet cakes price are just cheap also. I explained to her that maybe they're using boiled or traditional style of icing because most of the cake here in my local area where I live are old traditional style when it comes to icing (egg whites plus sugar) you hardly found a cake iced w/ buttercream. I am using SMBC for my cake frosting and the cake batter is moist chocolate cake and it also depends on the style or design of the cake if it's too complicated or too much work, and the ingredients i used for the whole cake. She told me that she's just telling or informed me about this so that I am aware that my pricing is a bit expensive than that other cake maker. So, during in our conversation, I explained all to her everything and then tried to gave her time to think to decide if she would still want a cake from me... I still put a smile even though i feel a bit like (you know what i'm talking, you can relate to that). At the end of our convo, i told her to just tell me if you can finally decide. But she still want to order a cake from me after complaining all the cake pricing.
You know what? sometimes you get offended by your customer's blah blah about your cake pricing and it makes you think that sometimes it's really unfair because they're just basing on the price not with the quality taste and the time you spent for working on that cake specially if they demanded you, like, I want a design like this...like that...and oh i want you to put some additional decorations, etc. They don't understand!
People shop based on price because they don't see the value in paying for a more expensive item, no matter what it is. If their family is happy to eat a cake that's a lower quality than what you're making, then that's okay for them. But it doesn't mean that you have to lower your prices, which is what she was hoping you'd do. You can't take it personally because it's not about you, it's about her wallet and what she thinks is important. We think that the cake is the most important thing, but most people don't care (shocking!)
My friend was saying that some of the cakewrecks cakes that we laugh at look pretty good to her because she can't make them, even the bad ones. So her standards are different than someone who makes cakes, and she probably wouldn't see why she should spend more money on something that she doesn't think about as being super important. The people who do think that it's super important won't give you a problem about pricing, but for most people the cake isn't the number one thing on their list.
It sounds like you explained it to her well because she still bought from you, but don't feel that you need to explain it to her every time she calls. Just tell her that your prices are your prices and they reflect the work that goes into them. She knows what the difference is or she would have gone to get the cheap cake.
Here's a little video for you...The budget part is at 1:34 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=up7H9_ipSxc&list=PLZ_bioPrrMRf2zS6gvtj9Zirarv0Z6Fw7&index=11
Ah, that sounds so familiar. I've also had some customers who clearly valued price over quality and of course there's no way I can compete with commercial prices. Last time it happened I got nervous and decided to buy one of those commercial cakes and try it for myself. It was pretty awful which made me feel tons better. Just remember that what you're offering has a lot of value, and that added cost might not be for everyone and that's ok. Now when I notice customers just want / need something super budget I don't force the relationship, on the contrary, I'll recommend the commercial bakeries. Otherwise I feel pressured the whole time to either work for almost nothing or cut corners that jeopardize the integrity of the cake (and my reputation). It's just not worth it to me. Good luck!
The good thing is she ordered from you so Yay! I think it's counterproductive to explain why you price things the way you do, the ingredients, the labor, blah blah blah... they don't really care why you're more expensive. If price is the guiding principle they don't care about your premium ingredients, that you bake with love... If it's "just cake" to them they won't choose a better product if all they want is something sweet to jam candles into for pictures. There are people who care about quality and appreciate artistry, the trouble is finding those people and when you do, hang on for dear life!