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Wedding cake pricing

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

Hi! I'm new in CakeCentral and I am amazed at how everyone are helpful. I learned a lot things just reading forums after forums after forums. I would like to ask fellow baker's opinion about this wedding cake. 

 

The bride showed us two designs that she liked, then we tried our best to incorporate both designs in this sketch. She wants a bouquet of fondant roses (large and small ones) with small calla lilies for the topper. and more flower fondants in each layer (shower on the picture). There will be fondant ribbon around each cakes and also hand placed pearls. We have a water fountain and they want to use it (not really sure if I should charge them, if so how much?) The cake will be Tres Leches with vanilla cream and peaches. Oh the cake will be fondant covered. They gave us an estimation of 100 to 150 guests. 

When we should them this sketch with the price (without delivery fee), they told us that it is too expensive for both options. I forgot to mentioned that these couple are my parent's coworker ( I guess they expected a discount). From that day till now, I keep asking myself "should I have lower the price?" "I thought the price was reasonable." 

 

Cake A                     

6"x4"

8"x4"

10"x4"

14"x4"

 

Cake B

8"x4"

10"x4"

14"x4"

16"x4"

 

I would appreciate any comments. Thanks

post #2 of 13

NO.

 

Your price is your price.  There is nothing wrong with them not wanting to pay it.  Somebody will - and man, with how inexpensive you are I imagine brides will be coming from all over the place to have you do their cake because you are WAY cheap and you give away a ton of cake!

 

Cake A feeds 150 and cake B serves 238.  I've seen some variation from Wilton, but that is WAY, WAY off.  So, you are basically doing those cakes for $3.50-$4.50 a serving.  That's madness for all those sugar flowers, piping, etc.  That would take what, 4 days of flower making, 3 days of making the cake... I'd estimate at least 35 hours in total.  

 

Madness!  

 

I suggest really taking a look at your pricing structure and come up with something that covers your overhead, has a 20% profit margin AND pays you at least market rate for a manager/head cake decorator in your area.  

 

Good luck!

post #3 of 13

Pricing also depends upon where in the world you live and the cost of living there. Where are you?

post #4 of 13
I don't think it should take nearly that long to make the cake (the 35 hours that FromScratch said, I challenge you!!icon_twisted.gif) but it will take longer than you think when you add in the consult time, answering the emails time, shopping, etc. But I tend to do flowers and pearls etc pretty fast, so you might take longer, I don't know.

When someone tells you that something is too expensive, just remember that everyone, including yourself, has things that are too expensive for them, but not too expensive for someone else. I can't afford a Ferrari, but there are people driving them. So they're not too expensive for everyone. As long as your pricing is right for you that's what it should be.

And do check your serving counts, they're slightly, off!
post #5 of 13

jennifer i think you build a lot of wiggle room in your timelines and nothing wrong with that--plus i think you are a perfectionist--so 35 hours divided by the 7 days--roughly 5 hours a day give or take? so 20 hours to make the flowers and 15 hours to make the cake--give or take? i bet that you work much quicker than that--20 hours to make a few dozen roses is a long time--making 10,000 pearls might make up some of  the difference--i think it's just very generous time management--

 

you never worked on the clock decorating anywhere didja? :lol:

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post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the input! I will look up my servings.

post #7 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stitches View Post
 

Pricing also depends upon where in the world you live and the cost of living there. Where are you?

I'm located in CT.

post #8 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by FromScratchSF View Post
 

NO.

 

Your price is your price.  There is nothing wrong with them not wanting to pay it.  Somebody will - and man, with how inexpensive you are I imagine brides will be coming from all over the place to have you do their cake because you are WAY cheap and you give away a ton of cake!

 

Actually this is the second time I was turned down for a wedding cake :-(

post #9 of 13
A reasonable price is one where you also make a reasonable living, if you had charged less you wouldn't have.

I think you're right in thinking that they expected a discount, and possibly a large one. That's up to you to decide how much of a gift you want to give to these people, not them.

I'd count yourself lucky you didn't get this order, a lot of times it's the cheap clients that expect the most for the least.
elsewhere.
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elsewhere.
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post #10 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by kikiandkyle View Post


I'd count yourself lucky you didn't get this order, a lot of times it's the cheap clients that expect the most for the least.


Lordy lordy lordy, ain't that the truth!!
post #11 of 13
LoL That was a typo, but I think 25 hours is not far off when you count all the other things like the tasting, emails, sketching, shopping etc.

K8, no I've never worked for a churn'em out mass produce bakery. I've only done custom work. 5 tiers took me 5 hours to bake/cool/tort, all day to fill/fondant, Another 8 more hours to decorate, 2 hours to deliver/set up. That's after 30+emails, 2 phone conversations, a tasting appointment, 7 sketches, a venue walk-thru, etc. It was a very blinged out cake but still. All that adds up. So yeah, I'm standing by 20-25 hours on a custom cake for 200. But maybe I'm slow? Totally possible. Could I have done it faster? I dunno, I make fancy stuff so maybe I'm not the best person to comment on timing!

OP, Just because you got turned down twice in the 2 times you've bid for a job means nothing. There is so much more that goes into booking a client then your price. Maybe you didn't instill confidence that you could execute. Maybe they didn't like you. Maybe they liked someone better. Maybe they can't afford a big elaborate cake and only talked to you because they thought they'd get a deal. Maybe you need to work out how to better explain why they should book with you or why you are awesome.

Here's something else- why are you drawing and pricing out cakes your client can't afford? Trust me, find out the budget first, figure out if they can afford you, then figure out size/design. There is nothing wrong with YOU turning them down! I do it all the time.
post #12 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by MyDreamCake View Post

Actually this is the second time I was turned down for a wedding cake icon_sad.gif

What is your marketing strategy? Are you targeting customers in wealthier areas who have a better chance of being able to afford your prices?
post #13 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by FromScratchSF View Post

OP, Just because you got turned down twice in the 2 times you've bid for a job means nothing. There is so much more that goes into booking a client then your price. Maybe you didn't instill confidence that you could execute. Maybe they didn't like you. Maybe they liked someone better. Maybe they can't afford a big elaborate cake and only talked to you because they thought they'd get a deal. Maybe you need to work out how to better explain why they should book with you or why you are awesome.

 

There's also a lot more competition now. Apparently anyone with a kitchen and a Facebook page can make a wedding cake, so it's that much harder for new businesses. Best of luck to you!

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