Shop Question

Business By adventuregal Updated 3 Nov 2010 , 1:36pm by indydebi

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adventuregal Posted 1 Nov 2010 , 12:52am
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I'm considering opening a shop after the new year. I first want to see how much my sales increase and if it is enough I will be opening, but first I'm thinking about locations. Has anyone considered opening a shop outside of their own town? We live in a city that I don't think a shop would thrive in, but we are closely surrounded by cities where I think I would. Is it a weird concept to open elsewhere? Any opinions would be awesome as I appreciate the CC thoughts!

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indydebi Posted 1 Nov 2010 , 6:12am
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lots of people live in one town and work in another so that's not unusual. I did like having my shop just 3 minutes from my house, but if I had it to do over again, I would have picked a different location. (Drove past a great place about 3 weeks ago and told hubby "THAT would have been the perfect shop location!" He hit the gas and quickly moved on. I think I made him nervous! icon_lol.gif )

One thing to think about .... you said you wanted to wait until after the first of the year and see what your sales would be. Normally, in the wedding and cake industry, Jan thru March or even April is considered the slow months. Lots of bridal shows and planning, but not much in actual sales. This is not an etched-in-stone thing and there are many who don't experience this, but it's something you might consider as you look at the numbers. thumbs_up.gif

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bakingpw Posted 3 Nov 2010 , 12:48pm
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IndyDebi said exactly what I was thinking about starting in the new year. I would plan, plan, during the new year, aiming at a grand opening Easter. In my shop, Jan- April were SLOW, SLOW, SLOW. I had a bakery in a town 40 minutes away and one 4 minutes away from my home. I loved having it closer, I could roll out of bed (and did many holidays) in the middle of the night and go in to work, and run home for the kids if I needed to). But, you are right to be concerned about location, if your town can't support you, find another nearby town that can. Best of luck!

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-K8memphis Posted 3 Nov 2010 , 1:30pm
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We used to run a white sale in January like what used to be the norm in America after the holidays. (nowadays you're getting 50% off before Halloween because merchants are either scared/ruthless/desparate. But I digress)

So we would run a white sale in January, pay so much down (in those days fifty bucks but I'd do at least a hundred) which would hold your date and you'd secure a nice discount on your cake--you could firm up details later.

Just a thought to gin things up during down times.
Gets your dance card filling up.
Gotta get the word out.

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indydebi Posted 3 Nov 2010 , 1:36pm
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I would also do what k8 suggested .... I used to offer a "Early Booking Incentive". I'd send them the quote and if they booked within 10 or 14 days, I'd give them some kind of discount. that booked the date and got the (non-refundable) deposit in my hand. On a $300 cake, I might give $25 (less than 10%, but $25 is a number people can get their head around) or on a $3000 catering, I'd offer around a $200 discount.

I've also noticed that poeple respond better to a dollar amount discount ($200) than they do to a percentage discount (10%).

Other ideas is that I would offer value-added options. One month I offered a "Book cake and catering and get a free chocolate fountain". For a wedding for 100, I'd invoice them around $3500 and the chocolate fountain would cost me around $50-$60. Yeah .... that was a GOOD one!! thumbs_up.gif

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