She's from another planet...
I tell customers up front that I have a minimum $35 setup fee - they can get 1 dozen fabulously decorated cookies or 3 dozen simple ones - just depends on how custom they want to get. I actually enjoy the challenge of a new design and making my own cutters, but I don't think I charge enough either. But I do love making them so much, it really doesn't bother me. I have recently learned to decline orders when I am already overbooked or just want some family time. I hate doing it, but after saying yes to everyone everytime, it feels good to have some down-time, too. I cannot believe she asked for your cutters! I have a friend who I occasionally loan mine to, and I know she would reciprocate if I needed one of hers, however I don't feel we are competing against each other. But a customer asking to borrow? Why don't you just sell them to her for $19.99 a piece! LOL She might realize the investment you;ve made in your craft! Good luck with the cake order... I'd send her an email with your new and improved price list...
Oh that is just incredible. Turned down her order b/c of price but wants to borrow the cutters? She should hunt them down herself and buy them. She wants 'nice custom cookies' but doesn't want to pay for them? I had the same problem feeling guilty about cookie prices. Went with 1.50 each and with how long they took I got way less than minimun wage out of it! I started feeling VERY bitter about getting ripped off even though I quoted the price myself. My own fault. But for next time - think of this: (like I will too) If they are on a budget, they can go to kroger - or roll out refridgerated dough. But if they want SPECIAL and CUSTOM then they need to PAY for special and custom!
I've only done 3 orders for decorated cookies! First order for a friend's DD wedding favors; charged $1 per cookies and made 360 of them. After I was done I realized that they got a HUGE bargin and I got an aching back!! Second order for 2 dozen was for a DF, no charge! Third order was for an acquaintance of the DF and I balked at charging her $1.50 per cookie but after doing 50 of the coffee mug cookies (3"x4"), I finally got it that I am definately not charging enough!! She didn't bat an eye at $75 for 50 cookies and I thought I'd ripped her off charging that much! Price is now $2-5 per cookie!! It only took me three orders to "get the picture"!!!
Wow, just finished reading all the posts in this thread. And I must say... I can't believe the nerve of that woman! LOL. She must be crazy, heehee.
I charge $15.00 for a 3 cookie bouquet and individual cookies are $1 an inch with a 50 cent extra charge for bagging & tagging. I use to think I charged WAY too much but then I checked CbyD and they charge about $3-$5 more than I do for their bouquets, so that made me feel a little better. When I think of how much time and effort goes into cookies, I think it justifies the higher prices most definitely
No less than $4.00 a cookie unless the cutter you use is very small (2 inches or less). I always charge $4.00 a cookie and nobody bats an eye. There is waaay too much work involved in decorating cookies to charge any less. The only way I could see charging a bit less is if the cookie is covered with one color of icing with no piping or other details - and even then, I would not charge less than $3.00 a cookie.
$1.00 per cookie is too low, even if it is a simple iced one. Walk into any Arby's, Subway, or other place that has those little cookie displays by the register. You are going to pay a MINIMUM of $0.79 to $1.79 for a mass produced, chocolate chip that's been sitting around for a few days. Compared to your custom made, multi-step, definitely will taste better iced cookie? Starbucks is even more.
My 3" cookies are 2.50 and go up .50 per inch. Sometimes I think that is nto even enough. Cookies really do take a long time. Do not under price or you will be wondering what did you get yourself into.
Last year I did a cookie fundraiser for the pre-k. I had 2 5 1/2 inch cookis that could have a name piped on them. I only charged $5.00 for 2, then I gave the school 30%, after the costs of cookie, bag and bow..I think I made like .25 per cookie. And I sold 286 cookies......all individually personalized. Horrible!!!
Don't under price...and no bakeries do not loan out their equipment. What if you got a real order?
Well, I must be doing something VERY wrong. Last week I filled an order for 4 dozen cut outs, iced and I charged $20. It was the SIMPLE icing, basketball, football, football helmet and trophy cup. I charged her the platter price for 4 dozen $15, and then added $5 to frost. She absolutely loved them. Our kids go to school together, etc. and she'll be ordering a cake in April too. If I do some cookies for a wedding, with the royal icing and lots of detail, then I'm charging $2 a piece. Maybe I'm off my rocker with my charging $20, but I'm in a REALLY small town, and am trying to grow my client base, and I really enjoy decorating the cakes and cookies too!
I live in a small town too. I charge $10/dozen for decorated cookies. I've had people balk at that price. I think it's very reasonable (on the verge of dirt cheap) considering the size of the cookie and the amount of detail. I must say I am kind of shocked at the $2 & up per cookie.... but I'm thinking I need to adjust my prices.
Here is a very dumb question to start the day, and one I have seen asked but never answered before, how do you determine the measurements of a cookie? Do you measure height then width, add the numbers and divide by two, or just height (top to bottom)? or do you measure diagonally? Take a heart cookie for instance, it may be wider than tall, so which way do you measure? See, told you it was a dumb question?
You know what I find hilarious about this world we live in....people will go to a cookie shop in the mall and buy a plain chocolate chip cookie for $1 and up, but wouldquestion the price per cookie if someone made it at home that has more detail put on it....SMH at that. I haven't had that problem because I haven't done cookies for a paying customer, but I know someone out there has had that problem.
I measure actually the cutter. I take the width and I take the height. I choose he large of the two. I usually give them the 3 inch price if it is under 3 3/4 at the largest point. I also round down if it is very thin. I try think of how much dough a 3 x 3 cookie would use then I judge by the.
I've only had one real order for cookies, it was a large order all the same in a simple design bagged and I got about $1.30 a cookie. I live in a small town area with a high unemployment rate but I figure that if people aren't willing to pay what I charge than they don't need the cookies. My MIL feels that I charge too much for the area but I guess my feeling is that it isn't worth it to do unless I'm getting enough for my time.
The only other "order" I've had was from my son's teachers for their Christmas program, they wanted 5 dozen decorated cookies. I charged them $20 to cover my ingredients because it was for my son's class.
I know that I wouldn't pay what I charge for cookies, my husband would throw a fit (he'd also throw a fit if I charged less than what I have) but that's why I decorate them myself.
.....I know that I wouldn't pay what I charge for cookies.....
Man, I know the feeling! Our plain 'ole chocolate chip and snickerdoodles are $4.50 a dozen (and based on conversations in CC, this is too low!). I'm sitting here thinking, "Holy cow those are expensive!" but when we tell people the price, they say, "Is that ALL?????"
One client refers to them as "gourmet" cookies and I stopped her immediately. I think the term "gourmet" is pretentious and I have yet to find an actual definition of what "gourmet" is. So from I can see, there are some out there who are just slappin' that lable on their products for ..... whatever reason. Are they "gourmet"? Who knows?
After reading this post and checking out all of your cookies, I have to say...They are amazing!
This is what I found on Wikipedia.com as a defition. If someone thinks your cookies are delicious and a little over the top than the avarage cookie... then hey its a label well worth it.
"A gourmet is a person with a discriminating palate and who is knowledgeable in fine food and drink. The word is a corruption of the French word gourmet, a valet in charge of the wines. It is often used as an adjective for meals of especially high quality, whose makers or preparers have used especial effort or art in presentation or cooking the meal, or for facilities equipped for preparing such meals, such as a restaurant."
Well, personally, I am one of those people who label their items as gourmet, and I am proud to do so!
For example right now the typical hamantaschen cookie (Jewish Purim cookie) is a plain, bland cookie dough with prune, poppy, or apricot filling. I created my own recipes for chocolate with peanut butter, almond, raspberry or praline pecan filling and a citrus dough with cranberry, chocolate, or mixed fruit filling. They are different, use better quality ingredients and are made by hand instead of machine. I consider this to be gourmet and worthy of higher prices.
Just my two cents,
treatsonthego and kathik, that is great info! I was just never comfortable with the label because I had never actually seen or heard of what makes something "gourmet" (look it up in a dictionary..... well, duh, debi!) and I didn't want to be presumptuous (sp?) about it. You both have made me feel better!
I am from a small town also. I charged someone $20 for cookies. It was last minute for someone I've known for years and it's not a business for me, it was more of a favor. I'm like everyone else and can't believe someone would pay that much for a cookie, BUT more people than I knew bought cookies this past year from someone for Christmas. I haven't found the perfect frosting yet, so I am practicing a little and think this Christmas I will sell my cutouts. I will charge more this time, but not a $1.00 a cookie. No one will go for it here. However, if I did put a lot of detail into the cookies I would see charging more. Maybe I am selling myself short, but I know the area. If I lived near a bigger town, I would see charging more.
I make cookie baskets and such too and I charge up to $5.00 per cookie (for weddings) and normal price is $2-3.50. No one hesitates to pay it. The online bouquets charge $5 and up.. just FYI
I charge between $2.00-$4.00 a cookie. I also offer a "friends and family discount" for those who have been good repeat customers.(Big orders or 5 orders or more.) Don't short change yourselves!!!
Ok, letting a DF borrow your cutters is one thing, but a customer who thinks your prices are too high? They can go to HL and get their own set!
Alright, I had a customer call last night for a cookie order. (a coffee friend, kids are inschool together) So I quoted her a price of .75 or the 2 1/2 and $1 for the 3 3/4 round. They're going to be basketballs, very simple. Vanilla frosting, nothing fancy. Well she placed the order this morning and is picking them up Sat. am. I'm fine with the price I quoted her, but now I'm thinking I need to charge $1 for the smaller and $2 for the bigger! When I type out my price list, I think I'll do that!
soccermom17... I have a small website set up with my pricing info... its www.treatsonthego.com if you want to get an idea of how to present it.
tahnks treatsonthego. I'll check that out!
(if my son will be patient with me still on the computer!)
lol haha I know the feeling I have 4 kiddos and never an empty lap ha ha
I've started learning to just make my price and stick with it. I get disgusted with myself for always lowering my price when I go to deliver a cake. I've also learned that people will pay the price if they want it. If they don't, you have that extra time to look for some people that will. This is an art as well as a cookie. What would they pay Picaso for his cookies?
People are just plain cheap. I had approached a cookie bouquet company a couple of years ago, when I wanted to get into a wholesale business. I offered them three different items, at three different prices according to volume of purchase. They called me three days later and asked me to sell them the small quantity at the large quantity price. I told them no way, and set my sights in other directions. With what she wanted to buy, she could have quadrupled her price and made a fortune, while I would have been at a 30% profit margin. I do not think so.
So much for trying to sell something to a business here in my area.
Stick with your prices, members. If they won't pay it, they do not want it enough.
I charged $5 for 12 beautiful heart shaped decorated cookies with every kids name.
I think I have charged too low.
I will think about that again.
I'm glad that I never started doing cookies. In my area they would scream to think of paying those prices for cookies. No one stops to think about the cost of ingredients, equipment, and your overhead. I used to make cookies for all the neighbor kids two or three times a week when my kids were young. At the price of sugar these days, they'd have to do without!
I have realized that I was not charging enough for the few cakes that I do. It took me alot of nerve to ask for more. Almost everyone paid without batting an eye.
I do a little cooking for different people for their study clubs, etc. and they think everything should be cheap. I figure if they are too lazy to throw a breakfast casserole together and bake some muffins or such, then they should pay my price. Then I turn around and don't charge them enough. I got a catering price list from someone today as I am planning a big regional affair for my Red Hats and was in total shock when I read the prices. I am definitely not charging enough for the things I do.
Being on CC and reading everyone's stories about pricing has helped me develop a little more backbone. I sometimes think I should just quit and not worry about it but I enjoy cooking and I can use the extra dollars.
I do sympathize with the people in my area as many live on minimum wage and cannot afford decorated cakes and cookies. I know that when I was a kid we were satisfied with a plain old cake with candles. Not so these days. The kids all expect something lavish.
I definitely would be offended by that woman asking to borrow your cutters. They don't have a clue what these cake and cookies supplies cost.
I've just been looking at Toba Garrett's website and whoa.... her prices are way up there. I know I know, I'm no Toba. She charges $15 per cookie, and has a beautiful 2 tiered stacked cake that I LOVE! Well several. But she's getting over $3,000 for a cake that serves 60-75. Man, I'd love to sit nearby and watch her work. Just "thinking out loud here, since this thread is about cookie pricing and I just saw her cookies etc. Check her out.