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Customers are getting more and more bold - Page 2

post #16 of 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by tokazodo

There was a forum thread about 6 months ago about a similar type e-mail going around. Someone ordering a cake, via e-mail, from out of the country.

The person who was writing the e-mail was doing something hinky with a credit card, I forget exactly how the scam went down, but it left the baker in debt some how.

I would avoid it. If her husband to be is here in the states, let him bring you cash.
Explain to her, that you usually do deposits, 6 months in advance and it is just too close to the wedding date for you to do otherwise and that you need to purchase the ingredients and materiel for her cake, so cash is the only way you can go.

If she is truly interested in having you make her cake, she will come up with cash.
If not, then oh well, go do something else that day.

Hope this helps,
tokazodo
Cake Hatteras

P. S. You make beautiful cakes! thumbs_up.gif



there IS that scam that goes around where they say they want XYZ and they will give you extra money and then you pay them back the difference. icon_rolleyes.gif i remember a couple months ago that these out of country scammers WERE getting a little more swift on how they approached the scam and how they put it out there to the bakers. I think you're best bet is to look for strange wording ("I am to be be wed on... OR writing "Happy Marriage" on the cake) and/or if you say you need cash up front because they are from out of the country and they say "no" that...then it's a sure sign it's that scam...just in a better disguise icon_wink.gif
It's not "just" cake...it's my life!
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It's not "just" cake...it's my life!
WI State Representative for Icing Smiles...start 'Baking a Difference" today!
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post #17 of 58
No cashee no bakee no problem.
post #18 of 58
That seems like a good deal to me, I would take it! It is close to double what I would charge for the same cake. Actually, I would tell her the actual cost, but have her pay the whole thing then.
Beginners, be sure to parrot advice and get your post count up as fast as you can. After all, it's not what you know, it's what people THINK you know.
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Beginners, be sure to parrot advice and get your post count up as fast as you can. After all, it's not what you know, it's what people THINK you know.
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post #19 of 58
Thread Starter 
Interesting responses. Thanks for all the posts. 2 tier cakes like that usually go for $390 US here (and that is without the cupcakes). I assume our local prices are different because we don't charge by the serving so there is no 36 cake servings x $y. Our prices are set by total cost of ingredients, overheads, etc etc with a mark-up and that resulted in a higher price than what most of you said you would charge for this cake as well as the lady's budget. Delivery is about 2 hours drive through a mountain to get to the venue. Most ppl assume delivery is included or free for their wedding cake. Appreciate all the feedback.
post #20 of 58
Thread Starter 
I forgot to mention that I switched from BC to chocolate ganache under my fondant cakes recently and the cost of using ganache has made fondant cakes way more expensive. If I use BC under this fondant cake $300US is great but with the high cost of ghirardelli chocolate here (that is all we have besides hershey's chocolate which I don't find makes great ganache) the costs are adding up. I posted last week asking if there was an alternative to ganache under fondant...to reduce costs. Anyone uses an all-shortening BC and still get sharp edges under fondant? I switched to ganache because my cakes were rounding on the edges with BC which is always soft in our heat. Hoping someone can advise. I assume because all of the cake supplies and a lot of the good quality cake ingredients are shipped in from the US to the Caribbean we may have higher costs. Just seeing everything adding up.
post #21 of 58
Prices vary greatly depending on market. It sounds to me that the bride's budget will not work with your costs. It's hard for us in the US to know what is acceptable in the Caribbean. If you don't think you can do it and make money on the deal, don't do it.

There. Their. They're not the same.

 

I hope I die before "your" becomes the official contraction of "you are."

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There. Their. They're not the same.

 

I hope I die before "your" becomes the official contraction of "you are."

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post #22 of 58
She may not know what the costs are there, just let her know. It would be very generous for the States, but most of us aren't familiar with the pricing. I use a 50/50 butter and shortening, and freeze for 45 minutes before I use fondant if I want a sharper edge. You can also add some melted chocolate to your icing.
Beginners, be sure to parrot advice and get your post count up as fast as you can. After all, it's not what you know, it's what people THINK you know.
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Beginners, be sure to parrot advice and get your post count up as fast as you can. After all, it's not what you know, it's what people THINK you know.
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post #23 of 58
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Annabakescakes

She may not know what the costs are there, just let her know. It would be very generous for the States, but most of us aren't familiar with the pricing. I use a 50/50 butter and shortening, and freeze for 45 minutes before I use fondant if I want a sharper edge. You can also add some melted chocolate to your icing.



Thanks. This is similar to what I use but it still makes the fondant sag at the corners. I guess I will stick to the chocolate ganache. I wrote her back and said I would do it for her price. It isn't what would normally be charged but I have an opening for that day. Since I'm the only one baking, decorating, admin etc it is hard for me to do more than 2 wedding cakes each weekend. Only have another person who washes up and cleans up so I try to take a minimum $ value on wedding cakes for my business to make sense financially. As for our costs vs US costs, sometimes what costs $5US is sold at a really high mark-up here. I buy a lot of stuff from US websites like GSA and amazon and they are great prices as is but we have to pay TWO sets of shipping fees. S&H from the seller's warehouse to my skybox in Miami. THEN, another set of S&H costs from Miami to the Caribbean and I am the last island at the base of the Caribbean islands so imagine how that freight charge adds up. PLUS there is a heavy charge for customs and duties on cake decorating items shipped in. It is just crazy.
post #24 of 58
Scam emails usually do not have cake photos attached with them. They could not care less. Having said that, they may be getting down to details now! Best to speak to someone on the phone and get landline numbers for her fiancee and call him.
post #25 of 58
Pearl, if you take a little time to explain your island economics to this prospective customer, you will be doing her a favour. She needs to know, and she will encounter the same issues with other service providers. And her design isn't asking for the time to make sharp corners.

There is an ebay dealer that ships worldwide--for one example of their price

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Nautical-SHELL-ASSORTMENT-Chocolate-Candy-Mold-2-1-4-x-1-3-4-x-1-2-2-x-1-1-2-x-/200673735668?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2eb91633f4#ht_1549wt_906

and the mould will have a reasonable working life.

There is an Argentinian company cortantescairo.com that manufactures excellent gumpaste cutters and veiners, they should be a more "local" dealer. Ebay vendor bluelakefox imports them to Canada with minimal markup so you can see if it's worth to pay the postage from here.,

Well we can't help with the import duties, but maybe this bride could help you by sending a parcel to her fiance? Like the mould and some pearl dusting powders...
post #26 of 58
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BakingIrene

Pearl, if you take a little time to explain your island economics to this prospective customer, you will be doing her a favour. She needs to know, and she will encounter the same issues with other service providers. And her design isn't asking for the time to make sharp corners.

There is an ebay dealer that ships worldwide--for one example of their price

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Nautical-SHELL-ASSORTMENT-Chocolate-Candy-Mold-2-1-4-x-1-3-4-x-1-2-2-x-1-1-2-x-/200673735668?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2eb91633f4#ht_1549wt_906

and the mould will have a reasonable working life.

There is an Argentinian company cortantescairo.com that manufactures excellent gumpaste cutters and veiners, they should be a more "local" dealer. Ebay vendor bluelakefox imports them to Canada with minimal markup so you can see if it's worth to pay the postage from here.,

Well we can't help with the import duties, but maybe this bride could help you by sending a parcel to her fiance? Like the mould and some pearl dusting powders...



Thanks Irene, I ought to check out ebay more often for cake supplies. Yes, you are right I have a duty to explain to her the economics here and why costs are the way they are since she lives abroad. Thanks for advising this.Yes she would experience the same from other vendors for her wedding. Got some good advice tonight icon_smile.gif
post #27 of 58
Sounds like a scam.

Other than that, why can't customers be bold? They are people who can ask for whatever they want.
post #28 of 58
Thread Starter 
Well imagine I told her I will do it $300US and she is sending me 3 emails a day since Sat a.m. with cake flavour changes and asking to do a tasting one week before she flies in to make up her mind on what ONE cake flavour she will take for her 2 doz cupcakes. She can't decide between lemon and vanilla for her cupcakes. She has changed her cake flavours 3 times and it is a 2 tier cake. She wants her husband to do cake tastings with me this weekend yet she emailed me saying he is allergic to almost everything. Really not sure what is going on here. I put the email aside..mentally... and carrying on with my day. Will respond to her tonight when I think about how to be honest with her politely about all her changes and setting up a tasting this weekend. That is done only when I have extra cupcakes in the flavours they want to try.
post #29 of 58
Ask her for a list in writing of all the allergies.

After the list arrives, you will be the best judge of whether you can work with that--if not, decline the order specifically because of the allergies. Not worth losing a moment's sleep.

And while you are busy working, your email should be set to auto-respond with a message saying "I'm busy making a customer's cake. I will respond when I can give you my full attention" OK because people don't have any clue at all of how a kitchen works when you bake for customers.
post #30 of 58
.........She wants her husband to do cake tastings with me this weekend yet she emailed me saying he is allergic to almost everything.......

On my goodness!! I would be running - as FAST as I could from this!
Allergies are nothing to sneeze at. They can be *VERY!* serious....I know as I have a list a foot long icon_sad.gif If he is that sensitive just *cross contamination* can cause serious problems.
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