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.
>> “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.
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 solve 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. Free 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 to get you consistent orders – 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 free Masterclass where I’ll show you how to create a Home Bakery Business with consistent orders and a stable income – without spending a cent on ads!
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!
Don’t wait to “have money” before you start learning. As I said in this post, books are cheap! Dive in and take responsibility for your own education. Apply everything you learn and I guarantee you that your Baking Business WILL GROW.