6 Reasons Why Home Bakeries Should NOT Bake Wedding Cakes

6 Reasons Why Home Bakeries Should NOT Bake Wedding Cakes

6 Reasons Why Home Bakeries Should NOT Bake Wedding Cakes

Did I hit a nerve with this post title?

Honestly, if some blogger told me 4 years ago that I should NOT be baking wedding cakes, I would have slapped them.

I completely understand this because, more often than not, wedding cakes are the MAIN source of income for bakers, right? So HOW will your baking business survive if you don’t bake wedding cakes?!

Maybe wedding cakes have been YOUR Home Bakery’s main source of income up until now…

The idea of being a full-time baker and never baking wedding cakes IS quite absurd to most home bakers. Probably because clients pay hundreds (and sometimes thousands) for wedding cakes. Who DOESN’T want a piece of that action?!

Wedding cakes are typically quite huge, need to feed lots of people and require extensive decor which you can charge extra for – so what’s NOT to love?

 

I did bake wedding cakes (among other things) during the first 3 years I baked from home.

Although I was stressing my face off, they did work out and every client was happy!

But over time I’ve realized that although the wedding cake scene might be exciting and prestigious, it is (shockingly) NOT the most practical or profitable source of income for a home baking business.

And after reading this post you’ll understand WHY.

I know this is completely going against everything you’ve SEEN in the baking world. It’s hard to even THINK about considering an alternative approach than wedding cakes.

But if you’ve regularly been worrying about where your next customer is going to come from, this post is totally going to help you understand WHY you’re struggling to get consistent clients.

So please read this with an open mind. You owe it to yourself to at least check this out if your current Home Bakery approach hasn’t been getting you consistent sales.

This post is here to HELP you reach success in your Home Bakery business!

Here are the 6 Reasons why Home Bakeries should NOT bake wedding cakes.

The wedding cake scene is exciting & prestigious, BUT it's (shockingly) NOT the most profitable source of income for a home baking business! I know this is completely going against everything you’ve SEEN in the baking world. But if you’ve regularly been worrying about where your next customer is going to come from, this post is totally going to help you understand WHY you’re struggling to get consistent clients in your Home Bakery Business! #baking #cakebusiness #homebaking #bakingbusiness

 

1. Weddings Are ONCE Off, Not Ongoing

When I first considered baking part time, I had a short interview with an acquaintance of mine to learn more about the whole home baking scene.

I’d been to multiple weddings that she’d baked for.

She bakes SUPER delicious cakes…

Her baking is honestly some of the most delicious baking I’ve EVER had. My mouth is watering just thinking about the flavours and textures of her bakes!

And on top of that she’s phenomenally creative! Her cakes and cupcakes are works of ART. Every design is totally unique and leaves everyone in awe.

Here’s the thing though; over her 6 years of baking, she’s only really baked for weddings. And in all that time she hasn’t been able LEAVE her day job and bake full time.

Despite her talent, despite her 6 years of HARD work, despite her TOP NOTCH QUALITY products and great reputation… She still hasn’t been able to make enough money to even bake PART time – never mind FULL time!

Her baking is definitely not the problem.

It’s her NICHE that’s the problem. (A niche means that you specialize in solving a very specific problem for a specific type of customer).

👉 Follow this link to join my Free Resource Library and get the >> FREE GUIDE: How to Find the Perfect Niche for Your Home Bakery.

I’ve found that people who order wedding cakes are unfortunately ONCE off buyers 98% of the time. And they know it! They know they’re only ordering for their wedding and will never order from you again.

They’re not the home-baked-goods type of people. They’re just getting a cake for the tradition and novelty of it.

These couples buy a cake from you once and then you’ll never see them again.

No matter how delicious and beautiful your cake was – 98% of the time you just won’t hear from them again. Remember that they are not actually your ideal clients. Your ideal clients are people who are regular cake buyers.

And even if the wedding couple are regular-baked-goods-buyers, they will probably label you as their “wedding cake baker” and not their “weekly baker”.

For a Home Bakery to be successful you need CONSISTENT, super regular business and the wedding cake niche cannot provide that for you.

Your baked goods probably aren’t the reason you’ve been struggling to get a consistent income.

🌟 Your NICHE determines the consistency of your sales.

On the other hand; investing your energy and care in baking for handpicked restaurants, coffee shops, delis and direct loyal clients is super sustainable.

They guarantee consistent, long term business and will keep your home bakery operating FULL TIME for as long as YOU choose! It’s AWESOME!

 

2. Super High Stakes

Wedding cakes are usually quite colossal, right?

I remember I only wanted to stick to baking cupcakes when I first started my home bakery. Mostly because the thought of dropping a regular 8-inch cake was already too stressful for me to handle!

Eventually I was able to gather some courage and started baking 9-inch cakes. These cakes are now the financial backbone of my home bakery and I’m very grateful that I haven’t dropped one yet!

But with wedding cakes there is SO MUCH at stake if something goes wrong!

Do you remember that episode in Cake Boss where they made a cake for this girl called Lexi? Due to some poor communication between 2 of the guys, they accidentally dropped the ginormous 4 tier cake down the stairs… 😱

 

This cake had taken the team DAYS to bake and now they were forced to recreate it in just 1 and a half hours!! NO THANKS!!

Fortunately, they are a huge bakery and always have extra sponge cake on standby, so they could make it happen.

But in our Home Bakeries we don’t have the time, money or physical space to always have extra cake lying around for “in case” we drop a cake!

Home bakers also typically work alone. This means we definitely don’t have a team of 6 bakers and decorators who can all jump in and make a cake happen in 1 and a half hours.

And always remember that wedding dates and times are SET IN STONE. This means you can’t ask the client for even a tiny extension.

So, in a nutshell: With wedding cakes the stakes (and therefor the stress) is SO MUCH HIGHER and if something goes wrong, it WILL be the end of the world.

 

3. Brides Can Be… Challenging

Dear oh dear… Business in and of itself is already challenging. Doing business with a stressed, tired, high-strung bride is seriously not for everyone.

Yes, you charge them for their cake and the time it will take you to create it.

But what you WON’T be charging for is the HOURS of texting back and forth that she should not worry. “YES (for the fifth time) the cake will turn out just fine and yes I did take notes (detailed, to the letter) of all the details you want.”

No matter how clearly and sincerely you explain that you’ve got it under control, they WILL text you again in 2 weeks to chat through all the same things – again.

They are just tired and stressed out. Unfortunately you might need to be at the receiving end of that a few times with a lot of grace and patience… and free time you’re not being paid for.

I’ve personally dealt with a bride that kept phoning and texting for the entire 6 months leading up to their wedding. All in all, the extra communication took about 4 HOURS. I didn’t get to charge a penny for all that time and effort – and neither will you.

And when you don’t get paid for all those work hours you end up making a loss.

 

4. Always More Money & More Time

Wedding Cakes are often like… very large building projects (Forgive my architecture half for kicking in).

My husband and I have been talking quite extensively about his architecture office. They have these super rich clients that often use the architectural services of my husband’s office.

Because their project is so vast, it’s difficult to take account of absolutely every little detail and cost right at the very beginning when payment is calculated and made.

The clients also keep changing their minds every week about what they want – even after building materials have been ordered!

This results in unforeseen extra work and costs which the clients never end up paying for.

The architecture company always ends up absorbing all the extra costs. They do it because they want the high paying client to be happy. They also don’t want to get a bad reputation for “not caring” or putting out a sub-standard building.

Brides are exactly the same.

ALL brides (myself included) expect everything to be PERFECT for their once-in-a-lifetime event. They want the entire day to match the ideal they’ve been dreaming of for decades.

So, it often happens that they see a new detail (after they’ve paid for a different cake) on Instagram or Pinterest or Instagram that they now want to add to their cake.

This means that there will always be extra things the bride wants to add or remove from the cake – often last minute when it’s too late or trivial to charge for it.

The “magic of a wedding day” can become this cause that will manipulate you into going above and beyond what was agreed upon and not getting paid extra for it.

If someone told me 4 years ago that I should STOP baking wedding cakes in my Home Bakery Business, I would've SLAPPED them! I know this is completely going against everything you’ve SEEN in the baking world. But if you’ve regularly been worrying about where your next customer is going to come from, this post is totally going to help you understand WHY you’re struggling to get consistent clients in your Home Bakery Business! #baking #cakebusiness #homebaking #bakingbusiness

 

5. Constant Search for NEW Clients

The general intention is to only get married once. One marriage, one wedding, one client couple, one order, ONE cake. Even if the cake is huge, it is ultimately still only ONE cake.

As I mentioned earlier, wedding cake couples will unfortunately label you as their “wedding cake baker” and not their “weekly baker”. This means they will order from you once for their wedding and then never again.

If your home bakery relies on wedding cakes, you will need to spend SO much time, energy and money to find and reel in more ONCE OFF wedding cake clients.

If you live in a large city where loads of young people keep pouring in, getting new wedding cake clients will be less difficult, but if you live in a small town – forget it!

But even if you’re in a large city, you’ll NEVER be able to compete with the large, popular bakeries. They’ve got an advertising budget that’s literally 100 times what you’ve got.

They’ve got the resources and reputation to intercept all the new brides and to keep you invisible. You just can’t swim with these large sharks in the tiny wedding cake pond.

This whole process is super tiresome and unsustainable.

I’d much rather invest my limited resources and energy into securing sources that provide multiple, sustainable orders – like LOYAL clients, restaurants and coffee shops.

With the right strategies you can create a stable income for your Home Bakery WITHOUT ever paying a penny for advertising!

I haven’t paid for advertising at all in like 4 years – and yet my home bakery has been fully booked for 4 years.

If you want my strategies for getting wholesale deals and building up a loyal client base, check out my course >> Home Bakery Startup. It opens for enrollment twice a year and it might be open now while you’re reading this!

 

6. Creative Restriction

Brides always have a VERY SPECIFIC idea of what they want their cake to look like. They are usually more than ready to show you their Pinterest Board for wedding cakes.

Wedding cakes are, for the most, part super prescriptive. Meaning, the BRIDES decide what you’re baking and you’ve got no say in it.

Although it does help when a client provides you some direction with a design, they’ll unfortunately (probably) not ask you to use your own intuition or creativity.

If you’re well known for your wedding cakes and are labelled as a unique wedding cake artist, then they might consider your opinion. But still, probably not.

All bakers are generally creative people and this restriction can lead to mounds of frustration & exhaustion from constraining yourself. It can even result some conflict with the bride when you take the “risk” of having a different idea to hers.

And if the bride is a friend or family member it can become very difficult to protect the relationship.

 

Collectively, these 6 reasons have been MORE THAN ENOUGH to convince me to stop baking wedding cakes for ever. And I hope they’ve given you some perspective too!

I’m less stressed, happier, my business is WAY MORE successful and I have more creative freedom.

It’s worked brilliantly to rather DEFINE MY OWN NICHE. My niche isn’t dominated by large, prestigious bakeries. Finding my own niche is how I was able to start a FULL TIME Home Bakery Business. And YOU can do it too!

Would you like to find your own niche too??

👉 Follow this link to join my Free Resource Library and get the >> FREE GUIDE: How to Find the Perfect Niche for Your Home Bakery.

What’s your stance on baking wedding cakes? I’d love to hear what you think, so comment below!

Chat soon

Aurelia 😊

Got a question? Something to add? Let’s chat in the comments section down below! (I respond to every single comment) 🙂

How to Get The Word Out (and Get More Exposure) for Your Home Bakery Business

How to Get The Word Out (and Get More Exposure) for Your Home Bakery Business

How to Get The Word Out (and Get More Exposure) for Your Home Bakery Business

Hey fellow baking nerd! If you’re here reading this post it probably means that:

  1. You know your baking tastes GREAT (your friends & family keep raving about it!).
  2. After some consideration and encouragement, you’re keen to sell your baked goods! Que bucket loads of excitement and visions of yourself baking up hundreds of treats with a broad smile 😀
  3. Then it hits you – you need PEOPLE who will buy your bakes! And where do you find them?!

Getting the word out about your Home Bakery Business is a VITAL step every Home Bakery Owner needs to go through! Getting the word out and getting more exposure is how you get clients, right?

For some home bakers this isn’t such a big deal and they get on with their ideas for spreading the word about their home bakery. For other home bakers it’s a source of panic and dread to tell people about their business!

I absolutely fall in the last category! So there’s no shame whatsoever if the thought of “getting the word out” makes you sweaty and anxious.

These tips apply for BOTH introverted and extroverted home bakers!

 

The most important thing you need to know right off the bat is that there’s no silver bullet that will fix everything and suddenly get you hundreds of home bakery clients.

Is there ONE ingredient in a super delicious bake?

Is there ONE step in the method?

Nope.

Some recipes have over 30 ingredients and 40 method steps in them – especially if it’s from incredible desserts like Adriano Zumbo’s for example.

In the same way a successful home bakery doesn’t have just one ingredient or one method-step in it.

When a baking business succeeds it’s because there are lots of elements working together in harmony. Just like with the best recipes.

So IF you’ve been hoping for shortcuts, silver bullets, quick tips etc. that will get you hundreds of clients in 1 month, I encourage you to let that go.

Please save yourself the frustration and disappointment!

>> Try not to look for quick fixes.

Through my own painful, frustrating experiences I’ve found that when we look for quick fixes, we’re really just avoiding our own growth – and success. These beginning phases are a vital part of your journey and story.

If you want a home bakery that gets consistent sales every week; pursue LEARNING & GROWING. The more you truly learn and grow, the more your business will grow.

RELATED: 7 Books every home bakery owner needs to read

When I started out my goal was to have a successful home bakery. Maybe that’s your goal right now?

But over time I’ve found that this is actually a very random and difficult goal. This goal makes it very hard to live your life day to day, because the goal is sooooo far into the future that it makes you feel like you’re failing right now!

🌟 The BEST goal is to endeavour to be a better Home Bakery owner than you were yesterday.

When learning & growing are your focus, your success becomes INEVITABLE! That’s just how it works and you’ll learn to love it!

Okay, let me step down from my soap box and give you 4 tips to get the word out when you want more exposure for your Home Bakery Business J

And no, you’re not going to pay money for advertising.

Paid advertising is not how I roll – just ask my course students. If a business needs to pay for advertising, it means it wasn’t built the right way. Great news is; you can totally create a sold out home bakery without ever paying for advertising! I’ve done it and so have my students. And so can YOU!

Here’s how you get the word out…

Getting the word out about your Home Bakery Business is VITAL for getting clients! If that makes you feel confused or panicked, just use my 5 tips to get you started :) These tips apply for BOTH introverted and extroverted home bakers! #baking #homebaking #bakingbusiness #homebakery

 

1. YOU START WITH FRIENDS & FAMILY

Yep, my name is Captain Obvious. Before I share any other tips with you, you need to know this foundational tip first.

Every single business on planet earth STARTS by telling your friends & family about it. And then they might tell other friends about it that could possibly be interested in your products or services.

I’m sure you also want REAL clients and feel that friends & family kind of “don’t count as clients”. I felt this way too! But this thought is SO not true! Family & friends who buy from you ABSOLUTELY count as clients. (Side note – never give them more than a 10% discount though. If you feel too guilty about charging 90% or struggle with pricing your bakes >> check out my post on pricing.)

But honestly, there’s no way around this CRUCIAL first step and it’s where every humble new business begins.

No one is above it.

If you want to start a new business you NEED the network of people you already have in your life right now.

I know first-hand how scary it is to contact all your friends & family to tell them you’re starting a home baking business – because I’ve been there!

But as I keep telling my students, fear isn’t a sign that you’re not ready. Fear is simply a sign that you’re HUMAN. That’s it.

Don’t complicate this step for yourself. It’s like ripping off a Band-Aid.

Just write a message, send it to everyone, and be done with it. If you wait to “feel 100% ready” to tell people about your business, you’ll be waiting forever.

Make a commitment to yourself to just do it. Choose a date and time that you’re going to send the message. Put this date and time on your calendar. You’ll only do this if you put it on your calendar. If it’s not on your calendar, you’ll always find another reason to procrastinate.

Then when the date and time rolls around – honour your OWN commitment!

 

2. STRATEGICALLY USE LOCAL, HIGH QUALITY INGREDIENTS

Now we’re going to get into some more intense tips. Don’t move on to these next tips if you didn’t do tip #1 yet. Promise me!

Okay cool, let’s move on.

There are certain ingredients that just taste better when they’re local, right?

Like honey, eggs, certain cheeses, wine, olive oil and sometimes even things like chocolate and butter!

Yes, they’re often more expensive.

But don’t let that get in your way because there’s a great opportunity here!

Let’s say there’s a local chocolaterie whose chocolate you absolutely love. They’ve got a great reputation, lots of fans and a large social media following.

  1. Go to their store. Take a photo of yourself at their store. Share the photo on your Instagram stories with text describing why you love their chocolate so much and tag the chocolaterie in the post too.
  2. Buy some chocolate, take it home.
  3. Bake something super yummy with it. Take beautiful photos of the bakes.
  4. Put them in a box with your logo on it. Take a photo of the box and share it on your Instagram stories and tag the chocolaterie in the post too.
  5. Take the bakes as a FREE GIFT to the chocolate shop for the owners & staff with a hand written note to say thank you for their amazing chocolate that’s the best in the world.


Odds
are they’ll give you a shout out on their social media! With such a kind gesture – and PRAISE fort their product that makes THEM look good – they’ll probably give you a shout-out!

I’ve done this with lots of high quality local products. And as a result I get seen by their customers on their social media – who clearly already love delicious food (hint-hint *ideal customer alert!).

This strategy also increases your business’s reputation because you’re associating yourself with a high-rep, established business. And they’re associating themselves with you. This does wonders for your reputation – especially when you’re a NEW business.

Please note that you need to be HONEST here. Don’t say their product is “the best in the world” if you don’t mean it.

And your photos need to look nice. If they don’t look nice the business might not be so eager to share your photos spontaneously. Click here to get some of my photo tips I’ve shared on Instagram.

 

3. USE LOCAL, FOOD RELATED HASHTAGS ON INSTAGRAM

I used to think hashtags are just these random things you use on Instagram because everyone’s doing it. But hashtags are SUPER STRATEGIC my friend!

I learned everything I know about hashtags from Instagram expert Carla Biesinger.

As a local business you need to use LOCAL hashtags to get seen by your ideal clients – who are local!

Let me use my own Home Bakery as an example:

I live in Cape Town, so if I want Cape-Townians to find me on Instagram, it won’t help to use the hashtag #baking. First of all it’s a super popular hashtag, so my post will just disappear down the line.

Secondly it doesn’t reach my IDEAL client who LOVES food and lives in Cape Town!

Better hashtags to use will be #capetownfood #capetowndesserts #capetownfoodie.

They’re all very specific to my area AND they all revolve around food. These are the hashtags my ideal clients are using in THEIR posts, so odds are they check out these hashtags’ feed at least once a week.

You can find your best local food hashtags by going to the free Instavast Instagram Hashtag Generator. Click on free tools >> hashtag generator >> Keyword. Then type in your town/city in one word e.g. capetown.

Then they’ll give you a bunch of different ideas of local hashtags that are being used on Instagram already.

Just make sure you don’t use hashtags that have been used more than 200k times. When a hashtag is huge it becomes very difficult for small accounts to trend for this hashtag. Meaning, your post won’t make it to the top 9 posts and get seen by lots of people.

And please use a local hashtag even if it’s tiny! if the hashtags are small and have only been used a few thousand times – use it! Quality matters here, not quantity.

Imagine if it’s only been used 2000 times, but then your post makes it to the top 9, and 63 ideal clients see your post! Imagine if just 10% of those people order, it’s still 6 orders which is a lot!

Using smaller, local food hashtags increases your chances of being discovered by your ideal clients.

Want more home bakery clients, but struggling to get more exposure? Whether you're an introvert or extrovert I've got 5 practical tips for you to start getting more exposure for your baking business today! Click through to get the tips :) #baking #homebaking #cakebusiness #bakingbusiness #homebakery

 

4. TRADE AT LOCAL FOOD MARKETS

Obviously this doesn’t work when there’s a pandemic going on. A pandemic like Covid-19 is a rare exception to the norm.

Local Food Markets can be a brilliant way to showcase your bakes, get more exposure and make some good money. Some annual Food Markets/Food Shows boast with attendances of up to 20 000 people – craaaazy!

If there’s one thing that humans LOVE to do, and never seem to get tired of, it is eating GOOD food.

I’ve had my fair share of Food Market Stalls over the last 7 years. I’ve traded at 7 DIFFERENT markets for a total of 22 TIMES. Was it worth it? YESSS!!!

RELATED: 5 Tips for selling your bakes at Food Markets.

If you can manage to trade at the exact same local Food Market for at least 6 months, you’ll build up a LOT of credibility and trust.

People might not see or notice your business the first 2 times. But when they KEEP SEEING you and your bakes, the odds that they’ll buy from you increases.

The repeated exposure you get from Food Markets is amazing. Plus, it’s the BEST way for you to learn how to interact with clients and confidently speak about your bakes.

Confidence mostly comes by repetition!

 

5. WORD OF MOUTH STILL WINS

Word of mouth is still, by far, the best strategy to grow a business! Whether you’ve just started your home bakery or been going for years; word of mouth trumps any other form of marketing.

Seriously; 1000 flyers are less effective than 1 person telling their best friendJane, you’ve GOT to order from this bakery!”

Remember this line: People buy from businesses they know, like and trust.

If these things aren’t in place, people simply just won’t buy.

Word of mouth is SO effective because you’re essentially piggy-backing on the trust that people have in their personal relationships.

Jane will buy from you because she trusts her best friend. With word of mouth it’s irrelevant whether Jane trusts YOUR business or not.

So make sure your current clients (even if it’s just 2 friends and 3 family members right now) have the BEST possible experience with you!

If you take great care of your clients they WILL talk about your business. When a client loves your business, they’ll promote your business FOR you – and for free! It’s SO rad!

And here’s a little secret >> their experience with you is about so much more than just baked goods!

Remember that home baking is all about family and love. So, every single moment you’re in contact with a client you need to CARE.

Care about the things THEY care about. Care about the important details in their lives that you’re baking for. Always follow up. Always be kind and excited to see them.

Your business exists to serve your clients and make them feel good & special.

If you want more clients, be faithful with the clients you have now. Do for 4 people what you’re eager to do for 400.

 

That’s it for the 5 tips to get the word out and get more exposure for your home bakery business!

Before I go I just want to repeat what I said in the beginning:

These tips will definitely help you, but there’s no silver bullet that will fix everything and suddenly get you hundreds of home bakery clients.

Just like great recipes don’t have just ONE ingredient or ONE method step, a successful home bakery also doesn’t have just one ingredient or one method-step in it.

When a baking business succeeds it’s because there are lots of elements working together in harmony. Just like with the best recipes.

So IF you’ve been hoping for shortcuts, silver bullets, quick tips etc. that will get you hundreds of clients in 1 month, I encourage you to let that go.

Please save yourself the frustration and disappointment of looking for quick fixes!

Through my own painful, frustrating experiences I’ve found that when we look for quick fixes, we’re really just avoiding our own growth – and success.

TRUTH: Home Bakery success doesn’t happen by accident or luck. Success happens with STRATEGY.

Even if you’re on of the best bakers in your town/city, you’ll still need to grow beyond being a baker and LEARN how to become an ENTREPRENEUR.

HOW TO STRUGGLE TO GET CLIENTS: Focus only on your baking. Bake things, post them on social media and HOPE someone orders. Then look for quick tips to get more sales.

HOW TO GET CONSISTENT SALES EVERY WEEK: Learn about ENTREPRENEURSHIP and learn about how CLIENTS THINK before they buy (in other words, learn about Marketing). Invest in a proven STRATEGY to get clients & sales every week.

If you want a home bakery that gets consistent sales every week; you need a proven STRATEGY to get you there.

If you’re tired of struggling to get weekly sales

If you’re ready to stop hunting for clients 24/7

And you want some consistent income in your Home Bakery…

Then I invite you to check out the Side Hustle Baker course. In the course you’ll get my step-by-step strategy for getting consistent, weekly sales in 30 days or less!

>> You’ll also get a free Masterclass on Entrepreneurship,
>> a free class on photographing your bakes,
>> a free Facebook support group
>> AND a free masterclass on how to make delicious decorations for your baked goods to give them more finesse & value.

 

 

And if you can’t invest in a course right now, check out these books that took me from losing 70% of my income to being fully booked for 3 months in advance! Books are BY FAR the cheapest way to grow your Home Bakery Business.

That’s it for today’s post!

Which of these tips are you going to start implementing this week? Let me know in the comments below because I can’t wait to hear from you 🙂

Chat soon

Aurelia

Got a question? Something to add? Let’s chat in the comments section down below! (I respond to every single comment) 🙂

7 Books Every Home Bakery Business Owner Needs to Read

7 Books Every Home Bakery Business Owner Needs to Read

 7 Books Every Home Bakery Business Owner Needs to Read

First of all you’ve got to know that I hate reading.

There, I’ve said it.

My husband, Adriaan, can read for hooouuuuurs on end.

But to me, reading is just… well… boring.

So the fact that I’m recommending books to you today means that these books are nothing short of MIRACULOUS.

Books may be boring to me in general, yes.

But when a book has the power to turn your business around from losing 70% of your profit to being fully booked – FOR 3 MONTHS IN ADVANCE – then it’s everything but “boring”, right?!

 

Books have saved my Home Bakery Business.

The amount of knowledge experts share in books is astounding!

They’ll honestly share $1500 worth of info in a book that you can buy for just $15.

Books are the most AFFORDABLE way to transform your life and business. Period.

I do offer a whole bunch of online courses to help home bakers get consistent sales and grow their home baking into a full-time career, but I realize that this route isn’t for everyone.

Very often, it’s just impossible – financially – to join an online course.

But an online course isn’t the only way to be successful.

YES, reading is “boring”, but a successful baking business sure isn’t! Don't avoid reading books like I did for the first 4 years in my home bakery. Experts seriously share $1500 worth of information in their books which they sell for $10 - $15! When I finally started reading books to help my business, I became fully booked for up to months in advance. Start reading these books NOW so that you can get more home baking business clients & sales! #homebaking #homebakery #bakingbusiness #athomebakery

Gosh, there sure weren’t any online courses to help ME on my home bakery journey! So the ONLY option I had was to fall on my face >> thousands of times.

And eventually my husband convinced me to stop whining about how tough life is and read a book about how to MAKE my baking business successful.

It took about 6 years of trial & error, reading, testing strategies, tweaking strategies, making mistakes, apologizing, learning and GROWING…

But it was worth it!

Reaching your goals and GROWING as a person is always worth it.

Doing it all yourself often just takes a long time.

The great advantage of my online courses is that you’ll take a severe shortcut to home bakery business success. I’ve got a student who’s gone from a full-time desk job to full-time home baking in 10 months – which is a whole lot shorter than 6 years, right?

But I repeat; an online course isn’t the only way to be successful.

You CAN absolutely DIY your Home Bakery success path!

And books are the most affordable and effective way to do that.

Please note: This post has affiliate links. This means that if you purchase some of these products I get a tiny commission – but at NO extra cost to you. I’m super proud to recommend these resources to you because they’ve completely transformed my Home Bakery Business!

Let me fill you in on the 7 Books every Home Bakery owner needs to read.

I’m going to list them in order of importance from a beginner level Home Bakery (thinking about starting) to an advanced level Home Bakery (baking full-time).

 

1. The Heart to Start – David Kadavy

This is a short, funny and sweet book that’s perfect for any creative person – which absolutely includes home bakers!

>> If you struggle with self-doubt

>> Or with having the guts to put yourself and your baking out there…

>> Or you’re a perfectionist that finds excuses NOT to start your Home Bakery (totally raising my own hand too, by the way!)…

This is the book you need.

The Heart to Start breaks down all the reasons we don’t start putting ourselves out there. When you understand WHY you’re hesitant to let your creativity shine, it becomes so much simpler to overcome your procrastination.

He gives it to you straight. He gives you truckloads of perspective that will OPEN YOUR EYES like never before!

You’ll finally understand yourself and how to get out of your own way so you can START the things you were meant to start.

books for home bakery business owners - the heart to start by David Kadavy

 

2. The $100 Startup – Chris Guillebeau

Where do I begin to express my deep gratitude for this book?…

I was a stubborn home baker that didn’t want to learn ANYTHING about business and marketing. I just wanted to BAKE!

To me the business side felt overwhelming, super scary and boring all at the same time.

For the first 4 years in my Home Bakery Business I kept praying that God would send me someone to handle the business side FOR me.

“Aurelia; you just handle the baking, I’ll handle the business stuff and we’ll all live happily ever after.”

This is what I wanted.

But God did not give me this…

You see dear friend, we spend so much time praying for things to be easier.

And instead of miraculously making our lives easier, God often gives us opportunities to GROW – which will eventually make our lives a bit easier (in that department at least).

But it’s NOT instant.

So when we see the opportunities to GROW instead of the miracle quick-fix, we get upset.

I understand because I often do this too! Even still today!

But because I’d just lost my biggest client and 70% of my income I literally had nothing else to do but read this book.

Guess what happened?

The $100 Startup made me fall in love with business & marketing.

And I’ve been smitten ever since!

This book helped me to realize that if you’re serious about making a profit, you can’t afford to NOT learn about business & marketing.

Business & Marketing isn’t like the dishes and cleaning in your business. This is not something you ignore and hand off to someone else to handle for you.

If you’re serious about making baking your career, you’ll grab the opportunity to learn from this book as soon as possible.

It’s easy to read, realistic and it gets you results.

books for home bakery business owners - the $100 startup by Chris Guillebeau

 

3. How to Avoid a Soggy Bottom – Gerard Baker

This is my favourite baking book of all time. But here comes the plot twist… it’s NOT a recipe book!

How to Avoid a Soggy Bottom is all about the technical science of baking.

There’s nothing worse than baking up a flop and assuming that you were “just unlucky today”.

There’s no such thing.

Baking is a SCIENCE. That’s one of the things I love most about it!

When a bake flops there are always reasons WHY.

Understanding the science of baking is the BIGGEST leap you can take towards improving the quality of your baking.

The better you can understand the science of baking, the better your bakes will turn out and the more consistent your baking will be.

How to Avoid a Soggy Bottom answers a whopping 150 essential baking questions! And with this knowledge your flops will be a thing of the past.

books for home bakery business owners - how to avoid a soggy bottom by Gerard Baker

 

4. Show Your Work – Austin Kleon

For YEARS I thought I always had to put my “best foot forward” in my business to be successful. Maybe you think that’s what you should do too?

We home bakers tend to follow hundreds of popular bakers on Instagram. We see their perfect baked goods, with perfect photos taken in their perfect kitchens.

Then we assume we need to replicate that perfection before our work is “good enough” to share on Instagram.

You see, we make the mistake of thinking that we’re either:

a] Baking for ourselves OR
b] Baking for our baking-heroes

While NEITHER of these is true.

>> Your clients don’t follow hundreds of bakers on Instagram like you do!

>> They don’t stare at your average-ish website criticizing it for hours on end like you do.

>> They’re not looking up every single baker in your town or city and laying out a crime investigation board with photos to determine who the “best” and “most deserving” baker is!

You’re not baking for yourself and you’re not baking for your “competition”. You’re baking for your CLIENTS.

If you want to become a successful entrepreneur, spend your energy thinking about what matters to your CLIENTS.

And one of the biggest things your clients want is to feel like they’re included in something meaningful. They want to be PART of something special.

Show Your Work gives you practical tips for how to make your customers feel like they are a vital PART of your business.

The book shows you how to INCLUDE your clients in your business and as a result you’ll win their attention, hearts and they’ll sing your praises from their rooftops!

books for home bakery business owners - show your work by Austin Kleon

 

5. Building a Story Brand – Donald Miller

For the first 5 years in my Home Bakery Business I always positioned my Home Bakery to “impress people”. I thought that’s what you need to do to get people’s attention. You need to IMPRESS them.

Maybe that’s how you feel right now in your business?

But people don’t buy because they’re impressed.

They buy when they clearly (and quickly) see that you UNDERSTAND their problems and can help them to solve their problems.

Here’s the most shocking truth of why businesses fail: They position themselves as the hero of the story. They make the story all about them and how amazing their company is.

But meanwhile all clients are only interested in ONE story – their OWN story!

Here’s a practical example:

We all tend to think we (and our home bakery business) are Daniel LaRusso in the Karate Kid movie.

On our social media and websites we parade around with our trophy trying to show people “Look at me & my business! My home bakery it legit! Look at the delicious things I make! Look at the list of organic ingredients I use! Come over here and read my life story that’s all about me!”

I did this too.

It’s how we all start out and there’s no shame in that because it’s what we see so many other businesses do.

But if you want your Home Bakery Business to GROW, you’re going to need to start to approach your business’ story DIFFERENTLY.

Truth is, my dear friend, we are NOT the hero of the story.

YOUR CLIENT is the hero.

Your business’ story is about guiding your client to success.

You’re Mr Miyagi!! You are the GUIDE, not the hero.

A successful business is the one guiding Daniel (your client) and helping him to overcome his problems and reach success.

When your business is all about YOU, it won’t attract new clients. Plain and simple.

But when your business starts to revolve around your clients’ success, they start flocking to you automatically!

 

Believe it or not this is just ONE of the SEVEN steps that Donald Miller teaches you in his best-selling book – Building a StoryBrand.

When I started positioning my Home Bakery Business as the GUIDE and the client as the hero, things in my biz totally transformed!

Building a StoryBrand is THE BEST book on Marketing I’ve ever read. Period.

The strategies in this book are a bit more advanced though. This book will only be beneficial to you once you’ve already got a website and have worked through the book The $100 Startup already.

Building a StoryBrand has changed my life!

You can also check out their podcast which is free and incredible >> Building a StoryBrand Podcast. But start at EPISODE 1! Don’t skip ahead and miss all the gold!

books for home bakery business owners - building a story brand by Donald Miller

 

6. Deep Work – Cal Newport

Technology brings a lot of WONDERFUL advantages to our lives. If it weren’t for technology, my blog wouldn’t exist right now!

You’d have needed to WAIT for your hair to dry naturally this morning. And before that you would’ve needed to boil water over a fire for your bath!

Technology is awesome and it’s powerful.

But with great power comes great responsibility, right?

In Cal Newport’s book Deep Work, he fills us in on the greatest disadvantage of technology.

Fact is, technology has TRAINED us to be distracted.

So often I’ll grab my phone because I wanted to do something specific – like making a note of an idea.

Then suddenly, 10 minutes later, I realize I’ve been on Instagram (again) and completely forgot the reason I picked up my phone in the first place!

Come on, you know it’s happened to you too. Just admit it! No shame here.

The problem is that in such a distracted world of constantly checking emails, text messages, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Tik Tok, et freakin cetera… we spend so little time digging into the REAL creativity – the GOLD – within ourselves.

The kind of creativity, productivity, clarity of mind and deep work that requires more than 15 minutes of focus to access.

To get to your TRUE GENIUS, you need to focus on one thing for a few hours – not minutes.

>> Deep Work has helped me to access my BEST ideas.

>> It helps me to GET MORE DONE in LESS TIME every single day.

>> It’s helped me to organize my life to be less distracted and more present.

This book helps me DEFINE what exactly I want and how to get there faster, with more calm and less anxiety.

If you want to uncover your deepest creative genius,
and have a calmer life with less noise & more clarity,
and be more efficient & productive…

This is the book you need to get there.

books for home bakery business owners - deep work by Cal Newport

 

7. The E-Myth Revisited

This book is NOT for beginners.

When we start our Home Bakery Business, the one thing we keep wishing & praying for is MORE clients.

But as your Home Bakery grows so do the responsibilities and sense of overwhelm & obligation.

Over time you start longing for the days when things were smaller and simpler.

You’ll long for the days you could just bake 1 thing at a time – soaking in the beauty of baking.

Now you need to crank out 20 times that per day. You need to employ staff, but you’re SO scared they won’t care about your business the same way YOU do.

So you just soldier on and do everything yourself.

If you’ve been getting to that point where your Home Bakery is constantly fully booked, you’re baking 24/7 and feel like you’re juggling 100 balls at once – this book is SO for YOU!

The “E-Myth” stands for the “Entrepreneur-Myth”. Weird name, I know. But don’t let that put you off.

This single book has the power to save your life and your business – before it swallows you whole (which inevitably happens in EVERY small business).

In this book Michael Gerber tells us the story of his coaching journey with Sarah and her Pie Baking Business. (And let’s pause for a moment and acknowledge how beyond cool is it that his case study is a home baker, right?!)

You get to be a fly on the wall witnessing all their conversations.

The book starts where Sarah’s working 20 hours a day (yes, 20 hours isn’t a typo), 6 days a week. (And I know this is true because I’ve been there too.)

And it ends with she’s able to take a WEEK OFF while her business runs smooth as butter without her needing to be there. Isn’t that incredible?!

The E-myth Revisited asks you the questions you don’t want to hear.

It challenges you like no other book challenges a small business owner.

It will force you to acknowledge that businesses, like people, are destined to grow!

And you’ll learn exactly how to facilitate that growth of your business – without sacrificing quality, your marriage or health for it.

This book will help you to navigate and calm the storm of a growing business.

It will SIMPLIFY the growth process for you and help you to get more profit AND more balance back into your life.

TOTAL must read for advanced Home Bakery Owners!

books for home bakery business owners - the e-myth revisited by Michael Gerber

 

8. Find Your Why – Simon Sinek

Okay fine, I lied… There are 8 books. I just knew that “8 books” in the post title would look WAY more scary than 7!

But there’s another book I just CANNOT leave out.

And it’s Find Your Why.

“People like Martin Luther King Jr., Steve Jobs, and the Wright Brothers had little in common, but they all started with WHY. They realized that people won’t truly buy into a product, service, movement, or idea until they understand the WHY behind it.

Start With Why shows that the leaders who’ve had the greatest influence in the world all think, act, and communicate the same way — and it’s the opposite of what everyone else does.” – Excerpt from simonsinek.com.

So essentially this book is all about understanding how your clients THINK.

Why is that important to your business?

Because, dear friend, before a client buys from you they THINK a whole bunch of things that lead them to buying from you – OR from your competition.

The success of your business hinges on what your clients think and how they make decisions.

Find Your Why will help you understand why your clients aren’t connecting with you or your business and what you can do to fix that.

books for home bakery business owners - find your why by Simon Sinek

 

Okay, now I’m REALLY done!

There are SO many more books I could recommend, but maybe it’s best that I stop myself here.

Once again, I repeat – I really DON’T like reading at all. But these books have literally changed my Home Bakery Business and my life.

They’ve also been the perfect way SAVE MONEY & GROW at the same time. For example; my cousin who’s a marketing lecturer learned more from the Building a Story Brand book (which costs $16) than in his entire university education (which cost OVER $10,000).

Learning doesn’t need to be expensive.

Special shout-out; I’m extremely grateful to my bookworm husband that persisted in encouraging me to read. If you’re reading this, THANK YOU Fish-pie.

Please don’t be a book-allergic idiot like I was for the first 4 years in my business.

Start reading these books NOW so you can start changing the future of your business and life.

Reading is boring, but success sure isn’t!

Struggling to get home bakery clients & sales? Books are THE easiest, cheapest way to grow your baking business! I know reading seems boring - I mean, hate reading - but being successful sure isn't boring! Click through to learn about the books that transformed my home bakery into a fully booked success! #baking #homebakery #bakingbusiness #cakebusiness

 

And now I want to hear from YOU! Are there any books YOU’VE read that have made a significant impact on your baking or baking business?

Chat soon

Aurelia

Got a question? Something to add? Let’s chat in the comments section down below! (I respond to every single comment) 🙂

5 Tips to Help Your Home Bakery Business During COVID-19

5 Tips to Help Your Home Bakery Business During COVID-19

5 Tips to Help Your Home Bakery Business During COVID-19

In December 2019 I made a long list of all the blog posts I’ll be writing this year… THIS post definitely wasn’t one of them.

Wherever you are in the world right now, I’m sure you can feel the tension, fear and mourning across the globe… COVID-19 has made its way around the world. Every day things are changing and escalating.

Schools are closed.
Businesses are closing.
Hospitals are overflowing.

And now comes the question; What should Home Bakery Business owners do during the COVID-19 pandemic?

In this post I’ll share some facts to help you feel more prepared and confident about what you CAN do during this time of uncertainty.

 

1. COVID-19 will absolutely affect your Home Bakery Business

The COVID-19 situation WILL affect your sales. That’s a guarantee. We need to accept that and make peace with this fact as fast as we can manage. You won’t be able to carry on with “business as usual” and still get the same income.

You’ll need to open yourself to the idea of doing things a bit DIFFERENTLY during this pandemic.

Whether you feel panic OR that people are exaggerating, none of your feelings are really relevant in your BUSINESS right now.

During this time your business will be shaped by how your CLIENTS are feeling.

Some clients will be too cautious to buy any goods from you and others will feel that it’s actually safer to buy from a home business (which it IS by the way! More on that later).

You can’t control how your clients are feeling about this pandemic.

And honestly I feel everyone has a right to feel and do whatever they feel is necessary to cope with the situation – whether it be to panic or to be in denial. One response isn’t “better” or “worse” than the other. It’s just how we cope with our emotions and we all cope differently with uncertainty and fear.

That’s okay.

But the bottom line is here that WE (Home Bakers) are PEOPLE and our clients are PEOPLE. People have emotions. And scientifically we know that emotions determine our decisions and actions.

So it’s not so much the virus itself that will directly influence your baked goods or something. The real thing that WILL affect your business is the EMOTION that people are experiencing.

All of the emotion in other people is totally beyond your control.

And please don’t judge any of your clients that are too scared to buy baked goods from you in this time. Make a point of respecting their emotions and their decisions.

You will get fewer sales. Your income will feel it. Try to make peace with this as soon as you can because you can’t avoid this effect and it’s outside your control.

That being said there are things WITHIN your control that you CAN at least try. You might not be able to make money from your Home Bakery the same way you always have, but that doesn’t mean there’s nothing you can do!

There’s plenty other income ideas you can test. Some of them will work more effectively for you than others. It all depends on how your clients respond. But it’s totally worth a shot! Some of these tips might really help you to use your home baking skills in NEW ways to earn money.

 

2. COMMUNICATE with your clients.

Personally I feel that the one WORST thing you can do in this time is to say NOTHING about COVID-19. You need to say something about it to your clients. Even if you just talk about what you’re feeling right now.

When you say nothing you’ll unfortunately come across as a heartless person and business. You and both know that’s not who you are. But when something serious like this is happening, your CLIENTS NEED you to show your humanity.

Your humanity is what connects your clients to you.

Home bakery businesses are all about humanity! The word “home” is in our trade. We HAVE to always represent the humanity of “home” to our clients.

So I encourage you to share an Instagram post, Facebook post and preferably also an email with your clients and followers to share your feelings and thoughts about the COVID-19 situation.

And since we’re talking about client-communication, also inform your clients THOROUGHLY about the extra precautions you’re taking to keep them safe.

Wash your hands, wear gloves while you’re baking. Tell them that your entire family is staying home during this time for THEIR safety (hopefully you are). Don’t just tell your clients about these precautions, SHOW them as well.

You can also offer to deliver goods to their home or to take goods to them in their car when they park outside your home.

Explain how it’s a LOT safer to park alone outside an isolated home than it is to go buy baked goods in a public grocery store with loads of people! Home Based businesses are safer because the public don’t gather there.

 

3. Alternative Income Options for Your Home Bakery

As I’ve said earlier, no matter how many extra measures you take to keep your clients safe, some of them just won’t buy from you anymore during this time of pandemic fear.

You’ll need to start getting creative with using your baking skills in DIFFERENT ways to generate an income for yourself.

I don’t have all the answers here, I only have suggestions. You’ll need to take responsibility to tap into your own creativity and brainstorm ideas!

You could consider hosting online baking classes through Zoom or doing a bake-along video like Cupcake Jemma on YouTube. People are confined to their homes so they ARE spending more time on social media and watching videos online.

Be sure to ask your clients if they’d be interested in something like this before you do it. That way you’ll know if it will actually add value to your clients’ lives.

You could also do Instagram lives while you’re decorating your bakes. Your skills might be boring to you, but they’re extraordinary to your followers! This is a great time to show people what goes into baking goods at your home and build relationships with them.

If you keep creating regular opportunities to connect online with your clients during this time, you’ll come out the other end with STRONG client relationships. And when a client has to choose between 2 bakers who bake similar goods they’ll ALWAYS choose the baker they feel they know, like and trust more!

Another idea is to make and sell baking kits for your recipes to your clients!

Package the measured and weighed dry ingredients and extras in baggies, print out instructions and put everything together in a pretty box. Since people are at home it might be a fun activity for them to bake with their kids.

This way they also have the peace of mind that any possible traces of the virus are being killed in their own oven. If they BAKE the goods in their own protected home, the treats will be 100% safe.

Baking from scratch seems too overwhelming for people who don’t bake often, but with a baking kit you’re making it easier for them.

Focus on easier things like brownies, cookies and various muffins. It’s baking fun to keep your clients and their kids busy!

 

4. USE your extra time WISELY!

In April 2015 I went through the most HORRIBLE & STRESSFUL time in the history of my Home Bakery Business.

First, one of my wholesale clients cancelled because they wanted to cut costs and try to rather bake themselves. I was sad, but this wasn’t a huge setback because this client provided about 15% of my income.

But then, just 2 weeks later, my biggest wholesale client cancelled… I baked everything for their FIVE coffee shops! So in a way I was losing FIVE clients, not just one.

In total I lost over 70% of my income in just 2 weeks.

It was devastating. My husband and I were honestly just getting by, living from month to month in between all the study debt and mortgage breathing down our necks every month.

That worst case scenario we all imagine… That picture we have of FAILING… Here it was! It was happening. It was REAL.

Fortunately this failure wasn’t because my products were bad. It was because my products were GOOD and not cheap.

For the first time in my baking journey I didn’t feel inferior to the coffee shop owners. I always thought that they were better than me in some way because they were more successful.

But in this case I knew that I did nothing wrong as a BAKER. As a business owner I did plenty of things wrong, lol! But as a BAKER I’d done nothing wrong.

And it was the first time I really started EMBRACING my unique baking voice. I’m NOT willing to compromise on quality and flavour just to save or make a buck. I’m NOT going to apologize for having a great product.

The WORST experiences in our lives can transform into DEFINING MOMENTS when we become humble and teachable.

Before this whole incident happened my husband told me for MONTHS to read this book called “The $100 Startup” #ad.

I kept telling him “WHY should I read it? My business is doing great!” That, my dear friend, is what pride sounds like. And nothing destroys a business as quickly as pride does.

"How is my Home Bakery Business going to survive the COVID-19 pandemic"... That's what most baking business owners are thinking right now! Read this post to get tips and ideas for how you can keep growing your home bakery during this difficult time AND stay safe. #homebakery #bakingbusiness #homebaking #cakebusiness

When I lost those clients and 70% of my income I unexpectedly had some TIME available!

I started reading this book my husband kept going on about; not because I felt I needed to. I was still too proud to admit that! In my mind it was still the coffee shop owners’ faults. But I started reading this book because I didn’t have much else to do!

Over the next few days of reading I finally realized how little I actually know about building a successful small business! I was humbled. And therefore I finally became teachable.

The information in this book helped my business to go from -70% income to being fully booked for 3 months in advance just a year later.

And it’s all because (by FORCE of circumstances) I had TIME to invest in my knowledge and skills.

So right now you may be facing unfortunate circumstances with COVID-19, you’re also now in the fortunate position to have TIME. Use it wisely!

Don’t spend all this time being sad or frustrated. USE THIS TIME YOU’VE BEEN GIVEN. Use it to educate yourself on business and marketing.

Use this time to GET AHEAD in your skills! This pandemic will end at some point. Won’t it be amazing if you’re way ahead of other Home Bakers simply because you considered your FUTURE instead of present reality?

I know it sucks t have less sales. This is NOT ideal.

But PLEASE do your future self a favour and start using this extra time to grow your marketing knowledge and skills. Read my previous blog post! Here’s the link >> The 5 best (and cheapest) resources to grow your Home Bakery Business!

 

5. Be HONEST with yourself and be safe

Here’s where I’m going to get a bit fierce. If there’s even a 1% risk that you might have the Coronavirus, please close your Home Bakery for now. You could always get tested to make sure and then re-open your Home Bakery.

Please consider your clients’ safety as if they were your own children. Don’t sell them things if you’re not 100% sure that you’re fine.

BUT please keep baking for as long as you feel it’s safe though, because people really need comforting home baked goods right now!

They need experiences that remind them of the BEAUTY of life.
They need HOPE and perspective.
Home Baked goods provide that for people.

Be the band that plays on the Titanic while it’s sinking. Super sad analogy, but I saw it on Cupcake Jemma’s Instagram Stories and I feel it’s such a noble pursuit to serve people with BEAUTY during panic.

 

And then as a last encouragement I just want to tell you that 80,9% of COVID-19 cases are mild.

Be careful what you consume in the media. The media knows that people are scared and they’re taking advantage of the situation by creating “click-worthy” articles and titles.

Their goal is to make money from people’s fear. And they do this by getting as many people onto their websites with ads.

Please be careful and only consume information from credible sources.

I struggle a lot with fear and anxiety – I’ve had to use strong medication for it in the past. I’ve resolved to only watch videos from Doctor Mike on YouTube. He’s really on top of things and has an “Alert, but not anxious” policy which I feel is very helpful and sustainable.

Also feel free to tell your friends not to send you panic-inducing content if it triggers you. Protect your body from stress, because stress only weakens your immune system.

Please be safe.

We’re going to get through this. It shall pass 🙂

Aurelia

Got a question? Something to add? Let’s chat in the comments section down below! (I respond to every single comment) 🙂

The 5 Best (and cheapest!) Resources to GROW Your Home Bakery Business

The 5 Best (and cheapest!) Resources to GROW Your Home Bakery Business

The 5 Best (and cheapest!) Resources to Grow Your Home Bakery Business


Honestly, I should have written this post AGES ago!

In this post I’ll share the BEST resources I’ve come across that have actually helped my Home Bakery to GROW. This post is ideal for you if you’ve already started your business and want to GROW it into a part-time or full-time gig.

Over the past few years I’ve been sharing these resources with bakers in emails when they ASKED for it. But it somehow never occurred to me that there are probably thousands of home bakers who have these questions too, but never ask them.

Questions like:

>> “I know my baking tastes really good, but I’m struggling to get clients consistently! How do I get more clients & sales?”

>> “I’ve had a few sales! I feel very excited, but I also feel totally overwhelmed… What am I supposed to do next to grow my business?”

>> “I’m working 24/7, but I’m barely making enough money to cover my expenses. What am I doing wrong? How do I grow my income?

 

This post is here to answer such questions and point you to resources that will help you to reach Home Bakery Success FASTER.

Please note: This post has affiliate links. This means that if you purchase some of these products I get a tiny commission – but at NO extra cost to you. I’m super proud to recommend these resources to you because they’ve completely transformed my Home Bakery Business!

1. Pricing Calculation System

This is probably the most important part of a baking business, but home bakers often don’t realize how serious this is.

You can have the best website in the world and be the best baker in the world – that doesn’t guarantee a successful Home Bakery.

Even if you can have the best recipes in town and have a massive client base… Even if you’re fully booked for months in advance it does NOT guarantee a successful Home Bakery!

We bakers often forget that a baking business is in fact a BUSINESS.

It’s super easy for us to get wrapped up in the BAKING part of it, but a successful Home Bakery is actually only 30% great baking and 70% great BUSINESS strategy.

That’s why large commercial bakeries with average baking are so successful. They KNOW that their BUSINESS strategy matters more than double as much as the quality of their baking!

They may score low on their baking quality, but they’ve got their business strategy down! They’re great business people and therefor their companies thrive.

I’ve told you all of this as an intro to the ONE most important business strategy tip you need.

Here’s my top tip: Businesses need MONEY to stay alive.

It’s not about being greedy at all. Just like plants need water to stay healthy and grow, businesses need money to stay healthy and grow.

If your Home Bakery doesn’t make enough money, it’s going to die. Simple as that. It’s a fact.

Yes, it’s super forward of me to say this so straight. And honestly I wish someone told me things so straight when I first started out!

The MAIN source of income you have is selling your baked goods. That’s where the money is at and it’s VITAL to your success that this part of your business functions properly!

If you undercharge for your baked goods or give all your family’s orders to them for free, you’ll need to address this as soon as possible.

Remember, your business needs money to stay healthy and grow.

If you struggle with undercharging and pricing in general you can check out this blog post >> 6 Steps for Pricing Your Baked Goods with Confidence.

You can also get my Pricing Calculator when you subscribe to my FREE Resource Library! It’s a super nifty PDF file that calculates the recommended selling price FOR you based on your ingredient costs, time spent, etc.

When you have your pricing system in place, your business will make the money it’s supposed to make.

When you price correctly you’re setting your Home Bakery up for growth and success!

2. Marketing for Beginners

Some of the best advice I can offer you is to start educating yourself on MARKETING as soon as possible!

The best products don’t get the most sales. The best MARKETING gets the most sales!

Marketing is ALL about learning how to make strangers realize that YOUR baked goods are exactly what they’ve been looking for.

Bakers tend to view business in a very outdated way. I did too at first!

They believe that there are 2 things you need to do to build a successful Home Bakery Business; bake great treats and advertise them. This strategy may have worked in the 80’s, but it’s not enough anymore!

I’m sure you’ve been experiencing this reality first hand and that’s why you’re here looking for answers.

Down that path the inevitable happens… We believe we just need to “bake great treats and advertise them” but no matter how hard we try, we just DON’T get more clients and sales.

It sucks!

And we start assuming that the reason why it’s not working is because we:

A] Aren’t “good enough” bakers or
B] Aren’t spending enough money on advertising.

This is TOTAL GARBAGE my friend. You’re a victim of totally outdated information!

First of all I want to tell you that businesses don’t struggle because their products aren’t good enough. They also don’t struggle because they don’t advertise enough. And they definitely don’t struggle because they don’t spend “enough money” on advertising.

Want to hear a shocking fact?

For 4 whole years I didn’t need to spend a single cent on advertising and my Home Bakery was fully booked every month! And it’s all because of this ONE thing – Effective Marketing.

Truth is that if you’re not getting clients you have a marketing problem. NOT an advertising problem.

Advertising and marketing isn’t the same thing.

Here’s the difference between Advertising and Marketing:

Marketing is about all the things you do to ATTRACT people to your business.

When you understand marketing and apply it effectively to your business you’re essentially turning your biz into a high-intensity MAGNET that attracts your ideal clients to you on autopilot.

Advertising on the other hand is like deep sea fishing… You go OUT and hope to find clients. It’s stressful. It’s risky. And most of all it gets expensive very fast! I’m sure you’ve felt that with your advertising efforts!

The honest truth: My Home Bakery has been fully booked 98% of the time (sometimes for 3 months in advance) with ZERO advertising.

When I started out in 2013 I DID TRY advertising and I didn’t get any business from it whatsoever! But investing my time in learning about MARKETING has made all the difference in my business.

And the great news is that marketing doesn’t need to be this super expensive mission to learn! It’s actually super cheap and effective to learn from books! That’s what I did and it works 🙂

You don’t need to go to an expensive university to understand marketing. YOU have the power to take control of your education.

I picked up my first ever marketing book I highly recommend that you start with the book just after my baking biz lost a HUGE client and hence 70% of my income – overnight!

I picked up a book (thanks to my legit husband), studied it, applied everything I learned, and a year later my Home Bakery was booked solid for 3 months in advance.

This book is a fantastic introduction to marketing in a small business and it’s called The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau. It changed everything in my Home Bakery!

Get it as soon as you can. Read a bit of it every day. Apply what you learn and I promise you – your Home Bakery Business WILL grow.

3. An Effective Website

As a home baker I totally get how daunting it seems to set up a website!

But the website building world has CHANGED drastically in the past few years. Don’t be scared off by the technological aspect of website building my friend. It’s really not a big deal at all.

Since I built my first, super embarrassing website back in 2012; some amazing, USER FRIENDLY software has been developed to help non-techies like us to build beautiful websites in no time!

But before we get to the “how?” of building a website, it’s essential that we cover the “why?”.

Why do you need a Website?

A] It’s professional:

Home Bakeries are all about approachability and connection. But when it comes to your website, it’s the one place you really need to be super professional.

According to a survey done by CNBC, a staggering 45% of small businesses don’t have a website!

And the fact of the matter is that today’s consumers LIVE online – so you need to be online to reach them.

Having a website communicates to clients that you take your Home Bakery very seriously and that you take them and their needs seriously as well.

If you don’t have a website, there will also be confusion over your availability to bake for them. If you only have, say a Facebook page, it may seem to them that your Home Bakery is just a casual thing you do for friends and family.

Having a website communicates to people that you mean business!

And lastly, to be honest, NOT having a website in this online era will ONLY damage your business’s perceived value.

The very first thing people do when they are interested in a business is to check out their website.

The last thing you want is for someone to be interested in your bakes, but then dismiss your home bakery as sub-standard because you don’t have a website.

Think of a website as your 21st century business card.

Have you ever been in a conversation where you tell people about your baking biz and then they love it so much that they ask for your business card, but then you don’t have one?

It’s such a sucky and embarrassing feeling isn’t it?!

Well, NOT having a website is the 21st Century equivalent of that!

You absolutely need a website to get business and sales to grow your business.

 

B] A Website Increases your Business’s credibility & reach:

As soon as your business has a website, it’s seen as a LEGIT business. It’s like having an online office/shop address.

A Website provides an opportunity for SEO (Search engine optimisation). This sounds complicated, but it’s really simple. SEO is about strategies that websites use to communicate to Google that you are a high quality bakery in your town/city/suburb.

This makes it easier for NEW potential clients to find your business on Google search which means more sales and profit for you!

Without a website, Google unfortunately and literally can’t recommend you to people searching for bakeries online.

 

C] A Website is an Opportunity to Exhibit What You Do:

See your website as a portfolio of what VALUE your Home Bakery has to offer.

If you fail to communicate online WHAT exactly it is that you do and how people can benefit from that, you are losing out on sales – BIG TIME.

Your home bakery essentially has a “job interview” with every single client that’s considering to order from you. And not having a website is like not even showing up for your job interview! Shocking!

 

D] A Website Saves You Time:

It does take some time to set up a website in the beginning, but it’s the most valuable time investment you’ll ever make.

On a website you can put ALL the details about your business and services out there for clients to see. It brings them up to speed with your business workings.

This means that you won’t spend hours answering the same questions over and over again every time someone wants to order from you.

Questions like: Do you bake for weekends? How many people does your 9 inch cake serve? Is there corn flour in your gluten free bakes? Do you deliver?

Prospective clients usually check out your website first before they will actually order from you. If they can find all the answers to their questions on your website, that means clearer communication for them and less work for you.

Even if your home bakery is just starting out as a part time venture, build a website as soon as possible. I built mine when I was just baking once a week! And it has been a backbone of success in my business.

 

HOW to Build a Website:

If you haven’t built a website yet, I strongly urge you to use Wix. They make it SO EASY to create a website – for free!

My very first website was on Wix, but my cousin offered to help me build me a website on WordPress because she knew WordPress very well. When I became more serious about my blog I bought a super expensive WordPress theme that has helped my blogging endeavours in particular.

But if I had to choose a platform for my HOME BAKERY’S website today, I’d absolutely choose WIX. I bought that ridiculously expensive WordPress theme because I was ignorant – to be honest.

I had no idea that Wix had become so incredible.

Squarespace is nice as well, but Wix’s free website themes & templates are better in my honest opinion and Wix is WAY more user friendly and cheaper than Squarespace.

Wix has this very nifty “Wix ADI” which is built in software that creates a whole website FOR YOU based on the information you provide! So awesome!

What’s also great about Wix is that they have a built in SEO program. SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. When your SEO is good, then Google will give you a higher ranking which increases your chances of being seen when people Google bakeries in your town/city.

SEO usually takes a lot of time & effort and it’s a steep learning curve to master it. Knowing that Wix takes care of all that will preserve your sanity.

So, my friend, even if you are technologically challenged, you will be able to get the results you want without breaking a sweat.

Another wonderful perk is that lifetime technical support is included! This means they have a team of people online 24/7 to assist you if you get stuck during the website building process.

Click here to start building your website on Wix. With their amazing templates you could be DONE creating your website in like 4 hours max!

And here’s a YouTube tutorial to help you build your Wix website.

4. Build a Story Brand for Your Home Bakery Business

For the first 5 years in my Home Bakery Business I always positioned my Home Bakery to “impress people”. I thought that’s what you need to do to get people’s attention. You need to IMPRESS them.

Maybe you feel that way right now in your business?

But people don’t buy because they’re impressed.

They buy when they clearly (and quickly) see that you UNDERSTAND their problems and can help them to overcome those problems.

Here’s the most shocking truth of why businesses fail: They position themselves as the hero of the story. They make the story all about them and how amazing their company is.

But meanwhile all clients are only interested in ONE story – their OWN story!

Here’s a practical example:

We all tend to think we are Daniel LaRusso at the end of the Karate Kid movie.

On our social media and websites we parade around with our trophy trying to show people “Look! My home bakery it legit! Look at the delicious things I make! Look at the list of organic ingredients I use! Come over here and read my life story that’s all about me!”

I did this too. It’s how we all start out and there’s no shame in that because it’s what we see so many other businesses do.

But if you want your Home Bakery Business to GROW, you’re going to need to start to approach your business’ story DIFFERENTLY.

Truth is, my dear friend, we are NOT the hero of the story.

YOUR CLIENT is the hero.

Your business’ story is about guiding your client to success.

You’re Mr Miyagi!! You are the GUIDE, not the hero.

A successful business is the one guiding Daniel (your client) and helping him to overcome his problems and reach success.

When your business is all about YOU, it won’t attract new clients.

But when your business starts to revolve around your clients’ success, they start flocking to you automatically!

Believe it or not this is just ONE of the SEVEN steps that Donald Miller teaches you in his best-selling book – Building a StoryBrand.

When I started positioning my Home Bakery Business as the GUIDE and the client as the hero, things in my biz totally transformed!

Building a StoryBrand is THE BEST book on Marketing I’ve ever read. Period.

The strategies in this book are a bit more advanced though. This book will only be beneficial to you once you’ve already got a website and have worked through the book The $100 Startup already.

Building a StoryBrand has changed my life! You can also check out their podcast which is free and incredible >> Building a StoryBrand Podcast. But start at EPISODE 1! Don’t skip ahead and miss all the gold!

5. Curated Home Bakery Business Training

I’ve shared a lot of valuable resources with you in this post.

Personally I had to digest all these resources and at least 100 others – I’m talking more books, endless podcast episodes, expensive online courses and more.

Then I had to spend years TESTING & TWEAKING all this info to see what works specifically for a Home Bakery and what doesn’t.

I’ve already gone through this effort, so that means you don’t have to figure it all out by yourself! I’d like to invite you to my next free Home Bakery Masterclass where I’ll share my top Home Bakery Business Secrets with you.

Click the button below to join the wait list for my next FREE Home Bakery Masterclass.

That’s it for this post 🙂 I hope that you’ve enjoyed discovering what resources I’ve used to get my Home Bakery Business to where it is today!

Dive in and take control of your own education. Apply everything you learn and I guarantee you that your Baking Business WILL GROW.

Cheerio

Aurelia

Got a question? Something to add? Let’s chat in the comments section down below! (I respond to every single comment) 🙂