To the person who wants to bake and sell from their kitchen at home for the holidays or anytime, The Rise and Fall of a Home Baking Business is a must read. One woman’s failed business venture can be an undeniable success for someone else with all the right elements in place. More and more people are discovering “unemployment” is a dirty word that has crept into their lives and vocabularies, Some who are jobless may seek to start a small business. Many of them don’t have much money to invest capital for their small business venture.
For those who find only lint, a misplaced button and a worn $20 bill in their wallets, if they can take a cake or candy recipe and turn it into a food item everyone wants to eat, then a home baking business may be in their future.
People who want to sell baked goods but have very little start-up capital need not be discouraged. Small budgets + unwillingness to borrow money = the minimalist approach to starting a business in your home. The premise for the minimalist approach is that you already have the equipment and appliances at your disposal. All you need to purchase to get started are fresh ingredients. If there’s really only $20 in the kitty, then purchasing the business license and health permit will have to wait. The minimalist approach lets you sell a little and reinvest for whatever is needed until you are operating fully above board and making a little profit at the same time.
Here are some points to ponder for the minimalist approach to a home baking business:
1. It’s important to have almost everything you need to produce your baked items you will be selling.
2. Choose one product to offer at the beginning. It has to be something that’s inexpensive to make.
3. Take pre-orders. This way you won’t risk making more than you sell. Set a goal and work to reach it. “For my first baking session, I want to bake and sell 10 cakes for $25.00 each. I will find 10 customers who will buy my cakes.”
4. Package and hand-label your product.
5. Charge three to four times the cost of what you make.
6. Deliver the orders on time and make sure your customers are happy. They will tell others about your baking business, and probably order from you again themselves.
7. Reinvest the profit to purchase what you need to make your business legitimate and to expand your product line.
8. Start the process all over again.
Remember, money you make first is for reinvesting in more ingredients to make more baked goodies. Profit can only be counted after you’ve made money for the reinvestment.
The minimalist approach is a slow process. Those who choose this method may not be doubling their earnings anytime soon. At the same time, they won’t be in debt to anyone for borrowing money or getting supplies and equipment with a credit card that they’re barely able to make the monthly payments for.
Seven Steps to Turn Your Holiday Recipes into a Baking Business
Fix, Mimi Shotland. Start and Run a Home-Based Food Business. Self Counsel Press, Wellington, WA (2009)