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Explain the price of a cake to my client?

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 

I am new to cake central and I tried to search this topic before I posted but didn't have much luck. I have been doing cakes for about two years but in just the last month I have gotten super busy. Recently I got a request to do a three tiered candyland theme cake for a three year olds party. when I explained that the materials alone would be around $100 she made the comment "well I'm not trying to break the bank for a three year old" She also wants me to deliver the cake 25 miles from my home. I have come up with my price per serving as $3.00 a slice (which is lower than the bakeries in my area because I am new) so around $150 how to I politely explain this to her? This is the cake she wants... I haven't run into this issue before because most people understand how much work goes into these types of cakes.. any input would be great :) thank you in advance

post #2 of 21
I think this cake is more labor intensive than you realize. That's a lot of different colors of fondant! I would charge closer to $300 if it's a 6, 8, 10.

I might say something like, "this is a very labor intensive design; why don't I put together a couple of other ideas in this theme. What is your budget, and how many servings would you like?"
I'll never fit in a size 6 if I keep having cake for breakfast.
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I'll never fit in a size 6 if I keep having cake for breakfast.
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post #3 of 21
Do a search on Google: how to price cake cakecentral. I do not justify my price to anybody, just a simple "ingredients cost, license/fees, insurance..." If they don't like it, I don't go running after them.
post #4 of 21

No matter where you live...$150 is insanely cheap for that cake.   That cake ..a 6/8/10 serves 74 so you are not charging $3. a serving.  Your base price...before all the bells & whistles should be $222.  Then you should have a deliver policy/pricing.        Where did you get this figure from?

Debbie - US Army (Retired) --aka "The Cake Sarge"

Good Cake Ain't Cheap! Cheap Cake Ain't Good!
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Debbie - US Army (Retired) --aka "The Cake Sarge"

Good Cake Ain't Cheap! Cheap Cake Ain't Good!
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post #5 of 21
Sadly, this is not your customer. Truth is no explanation will seem reasonable.

I would state what my price is & offer an alternative less expensive option.

Honest to goodness someone asked me why my cakes were do expensive. As I started to explain, he hung up.

www.VeryDeliciousDesserts.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Delicious-Desserts/207874222593145

 

It's never "just cake!"

 

You may get a cake for $way to little but you won't get this cake!

Animal
(4 photos)
 
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www.VeryDeliciousDesserts.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Delicious-Desserts/207874222593145

 

It's never "just cake!"

 

You may get a cake for $way to little but you won't get this cake!

Animal
(4 photos)
 
Reply
post #6 of 21
Thread Starter 
Oh crap that should have said $250 LOL my kids where running a muck while I was typing icon_sad.gif
post #7 of 21
Thread Starter 
I just don't understand why some people want an extravagant cake for the price of a grocery store sheet cake LOL
post #8 of 21
In most areas that would be a $300-400 cake, plus ~$50 delivery. You need to confirm what the customer's budget is and present them with a quote for both their requested design and an alternative that fits their budget (if possible). If they can only spend $150, something like a sheet cake with FBCT pictures of candy might be more appropriate.
post #9 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by ashsantos View Post

I just don't understand why some people want an extravagant cake for the price of a grocery store sheet cake LOL

Probably because they are conditioned to devalue custom cakes by decorators who are just starting out and feel that they should charge well below market price.

For 83 servings you are probably looking at a price of $400-500.
post #10 of 21
Sounds like she's not willing to spend more than what Walmart charges, so I'd recommend she try there.
elsewhere.
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elsewhere.
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post #11 of 21

I agree with everyone above, the cake would cost well over $300 if I did it. It's your price and you don't have to justify it to anyone.  If they don't like the price then they can see if they can find someone else that will do it cheaper that won't be a train wreck.  I give people quotes and if they don't like it, I'm not offended because I know what I make and that's what matters.  I honestly think now that there are things like Pinterest out there, people see these cakes that float around on there and think oh I want that b/c it looks fun.  They have no clue it's way more cake than they 'd know what do with or the time/effort that goes into creating it.  I think that they believe since it's on these sites it's a piece of cake...no pun intended!

Don't be afraid of cake, make cake be afraid of what you will turn it into!

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Don't be afraid of cake, make cake be afraid of what you will turn it into!

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post #12 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by ashsantos View Post

I have come up with my price per serving as $3.00 a slice (which is lower than the bakeries in my area because I am new)

 

I haven't run into this issue before because most people understand how much work goes into these types of cakes..

 Being new should have nothing to do with your pricing.    If on the other hand, your skill is not up to quality standard, then I would suggest you bake for your friends and family and price your cakes accordingly when you are more competitive with the bakeries in your market.    Set your pricing and stick to it.   You will have customers who think you are too high.   Then they are not your target customer.  Don't worry about them not ordering from you.    I have a book that prices out everything from fondant dots, ribbon wraps, you name it...on every size cake.   If I had that picture..I'd price out 5 different color stripes for a 10", etc.   The calculator would blow up calculating this cake.  

 

I imagine you haven't had problems before because you are pricing your cakes so cheap.    You really need to get some pricing standards. 

Debbie - US Army (Retired) --aka "The Cake Sarge"

Good Cake Ain't Cheap! Cheap Cake Ain't Good!
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Debbie - US Army (Retired) --aka "The Cake Sarge"

Good Cake Ain't Cheap! Cheap Cake Ain't Good!
Reply
post #13 of 21
Do not change your prices for anyone! If anything you aren't charging enough, if your not ready to compete (price wise) with the local bakeries perhaps your not ready to be in business. Don't misunderstand and think I'm trying to be mean or hurtful! You are doing a disservice to yourself, when you raise your prices you'll lose the customers you have.

Your base price should be just that, a starting point or rough idea for customers then you add in extras for detail and design-at least this is how I do it. I'm simply pointing this out because you said the materials alone will cost you $100, that's probably not including time to prep (sketch, shop, paperwork), baking (kitchen prep, measuring, leveling, making BC or fillings, whatever), clean up, and you haven't even started decorating, coloring your fondant, etc. at the end of the day are you making enough for your time? There are several other pricing matters I could add into that, but I won't go there, you can check out the other info in pricing threads-these are all things that should be considered before setting prices.

You should definitely charge for delivery/setup, I have an area I will setup and deliver included (included in my pricing) but it's not a large area and I'm I'm a small town. Anything outside that area is $ for x miles, plus $ for each mile over (there and back-round trip). Gas is expensive and so is my time!

I am willing to work within someone's budget for sure, as MelMar said: What's your budget? How many servings? etc all questions you should probably ask when consulting with someone. That way you can be sure to make adjustments to her design to fit your budget not changes in your pricing to fit their needs. This woman sounds like she's not someone you want to even deal with, not everyone is going to be your customer.
post #14 of 21
Right? Where is this "new decorator" pricing coming from? Do new doctors charge less? A new realtor isn't going to give you a break on the commission. How about a new lawyer? Think he's gonna say "hey, just graduated law school, so I'm gonna give you a break on my fees, my 500k loan can wait."

Now, if you are unskilled, and have no confidence in the business side of things...that's another story. So wait until you can confidently put out a premium product.
*Top 100 Designers in The USA, Brides Magazine, 2013*<---little ole' me!
Birthday Cakes
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Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
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*Top 100 Designers in The USA, Brides Magazine, 2013*<---little ole' me!
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
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post #15 of 21
And you gotta have a minimum order. No clue what your skill level is or your baking style, but I personally don't believe any home baker should be turning on their oven for less than a hundred bucks. The corresponding, the planning, the shopping, the miscellaneous recurring charges for your day to day operation, website, etc...that all needs to be made up by a little piece of every order.

Anything less than.a hundred bucks can be bought at grocery stores.

The further we all distance our products from anything obtainable by the general public, the better. And premium pricing for a premium product is the first step in that.
*Top 100 Designers in The USA, Brides Magazine, 2013*<---little ole' me!
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
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*Top 100 Designers in The USA, Brides Magazine, 2013*<---little ole' me!
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
Birthday Cakes
(2 photos)
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