Questions for starting a cake business

There are a number of things that can contribute to success of a new cake business. One of them is to learn as much about the business as you can before you invest a single penny. As a starting point,  I always suggest the new entrepreneur do a self-evaluation. Some of the most basic skills in business cannot be transferred. They need to be innate or part of who you are.

While your commitment to starting a cake business may be strong, it is critical to take the time to answer honestly  some tough questions about running a business in general. Don’t just avoid these questions or provide quick incomplete answers. Your thoughtfulness in  addressing these questions can be very useful in realistically assessing your readiness to start a business. Continue reading Questions for starting a cake business

Learning the Cake Business

If you are in the early stages of planning a wedding cake decorating business or even if you’ve been in business for a while, it is important that you ask yourself the following questions:

  • Who are my competitors?
  • What customer needs and preferences am I competing to meet?
  • What are the similarities and differences between their products/services and mine?
  • What are the strengths and weaknesses of each of their products and services?
  • How do their prices compare to mine?
  • How are they doing overall?
  • How can I compete? Offer better quality services? Lower prices?
  • How am I uniquely suited to compete with them?

These questions are all part of a competitive analysis. Often we think about these questions, but perhaps only in general or vague terms. We know a little bit about our competition or we think ” I don’t need to know what my competitors are doing because it won’t change my business…” or some such argument.  Unless you sit down and take the time to answer these questions (on paper), you are sticking your head in the sand and wasting a valuable opportunity to improve your business and ultimately make more wedding cake sales….

I often take a look at WeddingWire.com to provide a simple list of vendors in the US. Check out what  the cake vendors are doing in cities near you. What are cake decorators doing in other cities that you find interesting?

Go out and do that competitive analysis you may learn something about your own business by looking at the competition.

WeddingWire Vendors – Wedding Cakes – Find the perfect Wedding Cakes in your area!

Cake Baking is Art and Science

Here’s an article from The Daily Gleaner, Brunswick News that examines in a high level overview, the scientific principles of cake baking.


Baking is a very “scientific” process… in which all the
ingredients are building blocks that interact, causing chemical
reactions to create the structure of the cake.

Of interest to beginner cake bakers is the notion that it is very important to understand the terminology in a recipe. 

For example, Hofner says, no matter how hard you beat a butter cake,
you can’t hurt the batter. But with a sponge cake, if you stir the
other ingredients into the egg whites instead of “folding” them gently,
you’ll stir all the air out of the eggs and the cake will fall.

This is a great little article to remind us that its not all magic and art in the kitchen! There is a great deal of study and know-how required to make the best cakes….
dailygleaner.com – Let them eat cake

Cake Decorating Tips from ‘Ace of Cakes’ Duff Goldman

Check out ‘Ace of Cakes’ on thestreet.com as he shares some excellent advice for cake decorating beginners and pros alike.

On his must-have list: a cake wheel, serrated knife (for carving), filet knife (for “getting underneath things”), spatulas (for spreading icing), food coloring (from a baking or candy supply company, not the cheap stuff in the supermarket) and cake pans galore.

There are some incredibly valuable tips for aspiring cake decorators who love using fondant:

…Have shortening on hand — preferably “a very neutral vegetable oil that’s been hydrogenated,” like Crisco — so you can loosen up fondant that’s too firm. (Conversely, if it’s too loose, Goldman suggests using corn starch to firm it up.)

“Good art is borrowed, great art is stolen…”

Goldman has no problem with beginners — or even advanced — cake makers patterning their designs after icons or famous works or art. (Or for that matter, cakes made by other cake designers, including Goldman himself.) 

Practice, Practice Practice

Goldman notes that his formal training in cake design consisted of two weeks worth of lessons in culinary school. The rest all came from trial and error.

Read the complete article here:
TheStreet.com : Six Pastry Tips From ‘Ace of Cakes’ Duff Goldman | The Good Life

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Advice for Starting a Cake Business

The amazing and inspirational cake blog Cakespy has a great interview with Claudia Saraniecki of Babushka Bakery. If you haven’t already seen this, check it out.  What I loved were the words of wisdom Saraniecki eloquently stated about why her work is important to her. Read the whole interview and if you have a moment to consider… what is your why?

CS: Do you have any advice for someone considering starting up their own baking business?

BB: I have friends who create beautiful objects for people. They ask me why I get so stressed about baking–after all, it’s just cake. But the beautiful object that I make for people is put into their mouths and swallowed. It becomes a part of my customer! If this thought doesn’t scare a novice baker from the business, then my advice is to get the best training you can afford, bake daily, take good notes, and find people who will evaluate your work kindly, but honestly. And always wear supportive shoes.

Cakespy: Batter Chatter: Interview with Claudia Saraniecki of Babushka Bakery

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