Doubting Myself - What Should I Do?

Business By CakesbyBecca Updated 26 Sep 2008 , 10:19pm by marmalade1687

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CakesbyBecca Posted 23 Sep 2008 , 11:34pm
post #1 of 9

I am a cake hobbyist, not a licensed cake decorator yet. I've only been doing cakes since March. I've learned A LOT and my cakes are getting better and better, but I still have a lot to learn. Here's where I'm doubting myself. Because I'm not a licensed decorator, when people ask me for a quote, I let them know that I am not licensed, that I do this as a hobby and that I only have suggested donation amounts, not prices, and then I give them a suggested amount that is $1.50/serving for bc and $2/serving for fondant/ganache. I usually round it up or down so that I don't end up with prices like $41 or $72. It would be $40 or $70, that type of thing. Now here's what happened. I have a "customer" who ordered her birthday cake from me at $35 for an 8" round with ganache. Normally I would have quoted $40, but she had it filled with bc and only covered in ganache, so I asked a bit less. Then she asks me for a quote for 30 chocolate cupcakes with ganache. I quote her $1.25 a piece including decorations, plus $.15 each if she wants them filled. She turns me down at $1.40 a serving for custom decorated ganache cupcakes icon_surprised.gif. Her sister is interested in a cake to feed 70, so I give her several options, using the pricing scheme mentioned above. No response. I gave her the quote yesterday and she usually gets right back to me, but I haven't heard from her.
So now I'm wondering if I'm asking too much. I know that for the industry, my prices are low, but I'm not licensed and my cakes always have several flaws, although I am getting better.
So my question is, since my goal right now is to have opportunities to practice while putting some extra money into my hobby and eventually develop it into a licensed business, should I lower my prices, or keep them the same?
Thanks for any advice you can give me.

8 replies
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lardbutt Posted 24 Sep 2008 , 12:06am
post #2 of 9

Most cake civilians don't see every little flaw like we do! If you don't charge what you're worth now, and you get better and better, it will be harder to change your prices later. The customer will then feel like you're ripping them off!

Now hold up your spatula and repeat after me:

I promise to think enough of myself, my time, my family, other fellow decorators and CHARGE WHAT I'M WORTH!!!!!

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1234me Posted 24 Sep 2008 , 1:42am
post #3 of 9

I agree with the above poster. Charge what you feel comfortable with. If you lower your price, you will eventually want to raise it and it will be harder to do. Stay firm with what you want to charge - the business will come.

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drowsyrn Posted 24 Sep 2008 , 4:28pm
post #4 of 9

I have been decorating cakes for over 25 years and your post still rings true to me after all these years. You will ALWAYS have the people who question your prices and may not call you back. Once you set your prices and have evaluated your cost, labor, etc. then stick to them and the next customer who has no problem with the price will be right around the corner!

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lardbutt Posted 24 Sep 2008 , 5:07pm
post #5 of 9

Not everyone will be able to afford you and THAT'S OK!

I struggle with this issue too. I think most everone does. Keep your chin up, you do nice work!

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sugarcheryl Posted 25 Sep 2008 , 6:37pm
post #6 of 9

I agree with everyone. We all have gone through this but be true to yourself and again remember you are not for everyone. You are not being unreasonable.

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Lynnzee Posted 26 Sep 2008 , 12:01am
post #7 of 9

remember to get what you are worth!!! If you charge to small now they will expect the same later

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OhMyGanache Posted 26 Sep 2008 , 6:12pm
post #8 of 9

If you undercharge, you are doing not only yourself a disservice, but the entire decorating community as well.

Every time a decorator undercharges, a bunny dies. Hehehehe. (Kidding)

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marmalade1687 Posted 26 Sep 2008 , 10:19pm
post #9 of 9

You shouldn't be asking for the price you should be charging the price you want. Does Walmart put an item out and ask you as the customer if the price that they have listed is alright with you, and then ask what price you would pay for it? NO!! Don't bargain away your work! icon_smile.gif

Keep your chin up - the business will come! thumbs_up.gif

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