Are you interested in starting a cupcake business online from scratch? If YES, here is a complete guide to starting a cupcake business from home with NO money and no experience plus a sample cupcake business plan template.
There are several business opportunities which an aspiring entrepreneur could start on a small scale and then grow the business to become a national phenomenon. Most often than not, some the businesses are businesses that requires little or no technical skills. Businesses whose skills you can pick – up easily from books or from online video tutorials at no cost. One of such business is cupcake business.
Table of Content
- What is a Cupcake Business?
- 2. Conduct Market Research and Feasibility Studies
- 3. Decide Which Niche to Concentrate On
- 4. Know Your Major Competitors in the Industry
- 5. Decide Whether to Buy a Franchise or Start from Scratch
- 9. Discuss with an Agent to Know the Best Insurance Policies for You
- 10. Protect your Intellectual Property With Trademark, Copyrights, Patents
- 11. Get the Necessary Professional Certification
- 12. Get the Necessary Legal Documents You Need to Operate
- 13. Write a Business Plan
- 14. Prepare a Detailed Cost Analysis
- 15. Raise the Needed Startup Capital
- 16. Choose a Suitable Location for your Business
- 17. Hire Employees for your Technical and Manpower Needs
- 18. Write a Marketing Plan Packed with ideas & Strategies
- 19. Work Out a Reasonable Pricing for your Services & Products
- 20. Develop Iron-clad Competitive Strategies to Help You Win
- 21. Brainstorm Possible Ways to Retain Clients & Customers
- 22. Develop Strategies to Boost Brand Awareness and Create a Corporate Identity
What is a Cupcake Business?
Cupcake is a type of cake which originated from the united states, and is a small cake that is baked in small thin paper or aluminum cup and designed in different unique designed to serve just one person. Aside from the fact that it is a small cake, it still contains icing, candy or all other decorations that can be found in traditional big cakes. It is vital to note that cupcakes can also be called fairy cake or patty cake especially in places like England and Australia.
Reality is that, if you are a baker or even a caterer, it becomes easier for you to venture into cupcake business. This is so because the same ingredients and processes that are used in making the conventional large cakes are the same ingredients and processes that are used in making cupcakes except for the size difference. The basic ingredient that is used in cupcake making is flour, butter, sugar, eggs, frosting and cake decorations.
What Does It Take to Start a Cupcake Business Successfully?
One thing about cupcake business is that it is your creativity that can stand you out of your competitors. No doubt, people that are into cupcake making are very creative. This is why you can come across cupcakes in different shapes, designs and flavor. For example we have cupcakes in different variants such as butterfly cupcake, cake in a jar, cake ball, elaborately frosted cupcakes, and gourmet cupcake. The bottom line is that if you are creative enough, you can design your cupcake to represent any celebrated events or occasion.
Beyond every reasonable doubt, a cupcake business is indeed a profitable business because you can operate the business with your family members from your kitchen thereby cutting operational costs to the barest minimum. Hence, if you are able to secure a strategic high traffic location to open a shop, you can be rest assured to rake in good returns from your cupcake business.
Over and above, starting a cupcake business could be a way to earn additional income for your family especially if you have other businesses that could be seeking your attention. This is one business that wouldn’t take much of your time if you have a sales girl or sales boy or even if you have places where you supply cupcakes. Places such as schools, Sunday schools, birthday parties and wedding ceremonies et al. be sure that you are creative and your packaging is top notch and you will not have to struggle much to make headway with the business.
24 Steps to Starting a Cupcake Business from Home With No Money
1. Understand the Industry
Statistics has it that there are 400 registered cupcake outlets in the United States of America and 770,000,000 cupcakes are consumed in the U.S. in 2012 alone. Crumbs Bake Shop® is the highest selling cupcake shop in the United States with estimated net sales of $8.9m and a gross profit of $5.1m in 2011.
Interesting Statistics About the Industry
As a matter of fact, Crumbs Bake Shop offers over 60 varieties of cupcakes to their customers and they have plans to open their outlets in about 200 different locations within the next four years.
The cupcake industry rakes in about $1.6 billion annually in the United States of America with three years of steady growth. Cupcake business is projected to become one of the fastest growing businesses in the baked goods industry. The world’s most expensive cupcake is $55,000; a red velvet cupcake with an 8 carat diamond engagement ring on it and it was done by cupcakes gourmet.
The cupcake industry thrives on creativity and it is on record that Sprinkles Cupcakes which is based in Beverly Hills, California and own by Candace Nelson became the first cupcake outlet to start a cupcake ATM with the capacity to hold up to 350 cupcakes per time.
The cupcake industry is still growing despite the fact that there are many players in the industry. For instance, statistics has it that 13 percent of cupcakes produced are served in wedding receptions. The idea is that once a start – up cupcake shop is well positioned and offers additional services, then they just need to do little to stay in business.
Some of the factors that encourage and motivate aspiring entrepreneurs to venture in to cupcake business is the fact that you can start the business on a small scale from the comfort of your kitchen without making purchase of heavy duty equipment. All that you would have to spend money on is cake baking ingredients and relevant supplies. As a matter of fact, you can start by supplying your cupcakes to mom and pop shops around your community or even open a small shop / kiosk in front of your house and start retailing your cupcakes.
If you are hardworking and lucky enough, you can secure contract from the start to start supplying cupcakes for events (parties and wedding ceremonies et al). This is why it is important to network and enter into strategic business alliance with event managers and wedding planners et al.
If you are contemplating on starting your own cupcake business in the United States, you should ensure that you carry out a thorough market survey and feasibility studies. If you get some key factors wrong before starting your own cupcake, then you are likely going to struggle to stay afloat. But over and above, cupcake business is a thriving and profitable business especially if you are creative and ready to take on the available market within the location where your business is plus the fact that Americans love cupcakes and they are willing to try – out different flavors.
2. Conduct Market Research and Feasibility Studies
- Demographics and Psychographics
If you are thinking towards starting a cupcake business, you should be aware that there are no restrictions to the demographic and psychographics composition of the target market for cupcakes. Adults and children all consume cupcakes; the demography is all encompassing which is why you can find cupcakes been served in wedding receptions, birthday parties, children’s parties, school graduation parties, baby shower, and a whole lot of events and parties.
This goes to show that the target market for cupcake is wide and far reaching, you can create your own make niche yourself to serve a specific purpose. Having said, here are some of the group of people and organization that you can sell your cupcakes to;
- School Children
- Sport Lovers / Fans ( In Stadiums during live sport events)
- International and Local Tourists
- Corporate Organizations
- Families / Households in and around your neighborhood
- Churches and other religious centers
- Event Planners and Wedding Planners
3. Decide Which Niche to Concentrate On
Cupcake is a niche market in the baking and culinary industry hence it is difficult to categorically come up with different niche ideas within the cupcake line of business. However, those in the cupcake industry are known to be extremely creative which is why they could come up with cupcakes in different designs, different variants, different themes, different flavors and of course different packaging just to appeal to their target market.
So also, the owner of a cupcake business can decide to only supply cupcakes to supermarkets, schools and events. Some can decide to create cupcake ATM just like the owner of Sprinkle Cupcakes Candace Nelson did and some can just open a shop or kiosk in a street corner strictly for the sale of cupcakes.
The Level of Competition in the Industry
First and foremost, the fact that anybody with baking skills can decide to start cupcake business means that the business is open to all and sundry- hence it is expected that there will be high – level competition in the industry. There is hardly any busy community or even street that you won’t find loads of people retailing cupcakes.
As a cupcake producer or a business person, it is important to note that gaining a competitive edge requires a detailed analysis of the demographics of the surrounding area and the nature of existing competitors. And even if you are successful at first, new competitors could enter your market at any time to steal your regular customers. Don’t hesitate to adopt successful strategies from your competitors, but understand that directly competing with an entrenched rival is a bad idea for a beginning cupcake business; creativity and diversification is the key.
4. Know Your Major Competitors in the Industry
Here are some of the well – known cupcake shops / brands in the cupcake industry in the United States;
- Magnolia Bakery
- Crumbs Bake Shop
- Georgetown Cupcake
- TLC’s DC Cupcakes
- Sprinkles Cupcakes
- Huckleberry Bakery and Café
- Abby Girl Sweet
- Small Cakes Cupcakery
- Sweet Mandy B
- Magpies Cakes
- Goodie Girls
- Dozen Bake Shop
- Bee Sweet Cupcakes
- Cupcrazed Cupcakery
- Suite 106 Cupcakes
- The Flying Cupcake
- Cupcake Jones
- Red Velvet Cupcakery
Just like any other business, when starting a cupcake business, you just have to get your economic analysis right if your intention of building the business is to generate profits, grow the business, sell franchise and perhaps expand the business beyond one location to other locations within the United States.
When conducting economic analysis for your cupcake business, you just have to critically examine these key factors; place, product, pricing, and promotion. As a matter of fact, you would have to continue to review these key factors at regular interval while running your cupcake business. As a cupcake business owner, you just have to have a proper grasp of you competitive landscape.
Cupcake business owners should also know that running their own single cupcake business outlet (an independent cupcake shop) is different from managing or operating a cupcake chain or franchise. Managing or operating a cupcake shop chain or franchise attracts additional impediments like incentive alliance, bureaucracies, growth strategy, and operational guidelines et al.
It is important to note that payment of utility bills, rent, packaging and promotion and of course the purchase of cupcake making ingredient and supplies is one of the most important factors contributing to the overall cost of a cupcake business and should be considered as a major factor when carrying out your economic analysis.
5. Decide Whether to Buy a Franchise or Start from Scratch
You can actually find some of the leading cupcake brands in the United States in different cities in the U.S. This was achieved because some of the leading cupcake companies decided to venture into selling their franchise and at the same time operating chains of cupcake shops / outlets. No doubt, the franchise model has indeed help cupcake companies to successfully expand both locally and globally at a very fast pace.
If you are considering starting a cupcake business, then you have the options of either buying a cupcake franchise from an existing cupcake brand or starting your own cupcake business from the scratch. There are advantages for starting your own cupcake business from the scratch and of course there are disadvantages. So also there are advantages for buying a cupcake franchise and there disadvantages as well.
All you need to do is to look at what is available before you and then you will be able to make a good business decision as regard choosing whether to start your own cupcake business from the scratch or buy an existing franchise.
Part of the factors that can influence your decision when it comes to choosing between starting your own cupcake business from the scratch or buy a franchise are the type of cupcake Business model that you want to build, your business goal and vision, your finance, the competition available within the location you intend starting your cupcake business, and the available market et al.
6. Know the Possible Threats and Challenges You Will Face
The threats and challenges that is likely going to confront a start – up cupcake business is the fact that they will be competing with already established cupcake brands and also other cupcake companies that are likely going to be launched in same location as yours. You would have to go all out to compete for the available market in the location you choose to set – up your own cupcake business.
Other threats and challenges that you will face are economic downturns which usually affect purchasing powers and also unfavorable government economic policies.
7. Choose the Most Suitable Legal Entity (LLC, C Corp, S Corp)
If you are considering starting a standard cupcake business, a business that hope to sell franchise and open chains of stores in the different cities in the United States, a business that will source for contracts from government at all levels and big corporations, then you should take the selection of the legal entity for the business seriously.
When it comes to choosing a legal entity for a business, the nature of the business, the industry the business falls into and your business goals should inform your decision. When it comes to choosing a legal entity for a cupcake business, you have the option of choosing from a sole proprietorship, general partnership, a limited partnership, an LLC, a “C” corporation, or even a “S” corporation. It is important to clearly state that these different forms of legal structure for business has its own advantages and disadvantages; which is why you must weigh your options properly before making your choice.
These are some of the factors you should consider before choosing a legal entity for your cupcake business; limitation of personal liability, ease of transferability, admission of new owners and investors’ expectation and of course taxes. If you take your time to critically study the various legal entities to use for your cupcake business especially if you want to build a standard cupcake business, you will agree that Limited Liability Company; an LLC is most suitable. One good thing about LLC is that, you can start your cupcake business as limited liability company (LLC) and in future convert it to a ‘C’ corporation or even a ‘S’ corporations especially when you have the plans of going public or selling franchise.
Upgrading to a ‘C’ corporation or ‘S’ corporation will give you the opportunity to grow your cupcake business so as to compete with major players in the industry; you will be able to generate capital from venture capital firms, you will enjoy separate tax structure, and you can easily transfer ownership of the company; you will enjoy flexibility in ownership and in your management structures amongst other benefits.
8. Choose a Catchy Business Name
When it comes to choosing a name for your business, you should be creative because whatever name you choose for your business will go a long way to create a perception of what the business represent. Usually it is the norm for people to follow the trend in the industry they intend operating when naming their business.
If you are considering starting your own cupcake business, here are some catchy names that you can choose from;
- Cheryl Creams Bakery
- Sweet Delight Cupcake
- Glitters Cupcake Shop
- Nancy Confectionaries, LLC
- Cream ‘n’ Cakes Ltd
- Honey – Pot Sensation, LLC
- Mary ‘n’ Martha Cupcakes
- Isabella House of Cupcakes
- 247 Cupcake People
- Caramel Yummy Cupcakes, LLC
9. Discuss with an Agent to Know the Best Insurance Policies for You
When it comes to starting a standard cupcake business there are key insurance policies that you must have in place same applies to any other industry you intend starting a business. It is important to note that you can’t be permitted to run a standard cupcake business in the United States, in Canada, Australia and in Europe if you don’t have the basic insurance cover for your business.
These are some of the basic insurance cover that you should consider purchasing if you want to start your own cupcake business in the United States of America;
- General insurance
- Health insurance
- Liability insurance
- Kitchen Insurance
- Workers Compensation
- Overhead expense disability insurance (optional)
- Business owner’s policy group insurance
10. Protect your Intellectual Property With Trademark, Copyrights, Patents
If you are running a franchise cupcake business model, it is compulsory that you file for intellectual property protection. It will become handy and very useful as your cupcake brand begins to expand far beyond your reach. The truth is that even if you are starting your own bed and breakfasts from the scratch, you would still need to secure your brand name from an intellectual property clearinghouse.
It is difficult to build your cupcake business from the scratch, and watch the brand name slip off your hands. Even if you intend buying a cupcake franchise, you would still need to contract the trademarks and service marks from the franchising company.
If you want to register your trademark, you are expected to begin the process by filing an application with the USPTO. Please note that the final approval of your trademark is subjected to the review of attorneys as required by USPTO.
11. Get the Necessary Professional Certification
By and large, you might not have need for professional certification before you can be allowed to operate your own cupcake business in the United States of America, Canada, and Australia and even in Europe. But you would need to get clearance from local health authority and foods and drugs agencies before you can be allowed to open and operate a cupcake shop. This is so because the cupcake business is considered as a delicate business; it involves foods and drinks.
You will also need a kitchen clearance certificate, food handler certificate and perhaps other relevant certification as it applies to your country or even your state.
12. Get the Necessary Legal Documents You Need to Operate
The legal requirements for cupcake business vary slightly from country to country, states to states and even from cities to cities. So it is important to contact your local authority to know the legal requirements that you would need in order to open your own cupcake shop in your country.
These are some of the basic legal requirements needed before you can successfully start and run your own cupcake business / shop in the United States;
- Business and liability insurance
- Food handler certificate
- Health inspection Certificate
- Copy of license for the service support facility and/or a recent inspection report
- Tax Payer’s ID
- Fire certificate
- Kitchen insurance
- Certificate of Incorporation
- Business License
- Business Plan
- Non – disclosure Agreement
- Employment Agreement (offer letters)
- Employee’s Handbook
- Operating Agreement for LLCs
- Building License
- Franchise or Trademark License
13. Write a Business Plan
When it comes to starting a business, one of the first steps that you are expected to take is to consult experts to help you draft a good and workable business plan or you can make use of business plan template to prepare your business plan. The truth is that, in order to successfully run a standard cupcake business, you would need to have a good business plan in place.
A business plan is the blueprint that is needed to successfully run a business; with a workable business plan in place, you will reduce the trial and error approach of doing business. You will be able to manage your business with purpose and perhaps with precision; you will know what to do per time and how to handle business challenges and business growth or expansion.
In essence, if you want to start your own cupcake business, you are required to write a detailed business plan that can pass reality test when subjected to it; you should work with the facts, figures and other indices in the baking and culinary industry as it applies to the locations or country you intend starting your cupcake business.
The whole idea of writing a business plan is not just for the sake of having a business document in place; but a detail guide on how to effectively run your business from the scratch. Your business plan should outline and cover strategies on how you intend to manage and grow your cupcake business. The rule of thumb in writing a business plan is to try as much as possible to be realistic and never to over project when putting figures on income and profits et al. As a matter of fact, it is safer to underestimate when writing a business plan so that you won’t be so disappointed when reality sets in.
These are the key areas that should be covered in your business plan;
Executive summary and Company’s descriptions
You are expected to write about the concept of your business, descriptions of your company, your company’s vision statement, mission statement and where your company will be located and also if you intend partnering with other companies or opening other cupcake shops in different cities in the United States of America and in other parts of the world.
Other key components that should not be missing out from your cupcake business plan are product offering, SWOT analysis, competitive analysis, marketing and sales analysis / strategies, target market, market goals, pricing, costing and financial projection, publicity and advertising strategy, expansion and growth strategies, budget and start – up capital generation et al.
14. Prepare a Detailed Cost Analysis
When it comes to starting a cupcake business, loads of factors influences the amount that will be required to successful launch the business. Factors like the location you intend starting the business, the size of cupcake business you want to start i.e. the number of outlets / shops et al, and of course the state of the economy as at when you intend start the business.
No matter where you intend starting your cupcake business, you would be required to fulfill most of the items listed below;
- The Fee for registering the business in the United States -$725.
- The budget for legal fees, insurance, permits and license – $3,000
- The amount needed to rent a small shop for 6 months if you are not going to make use of your house (reconstruction of the restaurant is inclusive) – $20,000.
- The Cost for the purchase of kitchen / baking equipment and gadgets (industrial ovens, fridges, smoke detector, TVs, microwave oven, Pans, Foils, Sound System, tables and chairs et al): $5,000.
- The Cost for supply of flour and other baking ingredients for a month: $1,000.
- The Cost of Launching a Website: $600
- The cost opening party: $5,000 (optional)
- Additional Expenditure (Business cards, Signage, Adverts and Promotions et al): $5,000
Going by the report from our research and feasibility studies, you will need an average of $50,000 to start a small scale but standard cupcake business in the United States of America.
If you want to start a medium scale but standard cupcake business in the United States, you would need nothing less than $150,000. And if your intention is to start a large scale cupcake business with chains of shops in the United States of America, then you should look towards generating over $500,000 as your start – up capital.
15. Raise the Needed Startup Capital
It is often said that money is the life – line of any business. No doubt raising start – up capital is perhaps one of the major concerns for entrepreneurs; it can be challenging raising capital to launch a business idea. Your idea must be workable and promising for you to secure finance from financial institutions or from investors.
The first thing to put in place before sourcing for start – up capital for your business is to draft a detailed business plan. With a good business plan, you can easily convince investors to invest in your business. The truth is that no bank can give you a loan if you don’t have a good and workable business plan. Besides, investors will not take you seriously if you don’t have a business plan on ground before launching out to source for start – up capital.
There are several options when it comes to raising money to finance a start – up business. Some of the options are;
- Raising money from personal savings and sale of personal stocks
- Raising money from investors and business partners
- Applying for loan from bank
- Pitching your business idea and applying for business grants and seed funding from donor organizations and angel investors
- Sourcing for soft loans from family members and friends.
16. Choose a Suitable Location for your Business
The fact that there different sizes of cupcake business scattered across the United States does not mean that cupcake business can thrive in every location. Before choosing a location for your cupcake business, ensure that you conduct a thorough feasibility studies. There possibility of you coming across a cupcake shop that just closed shop in the location you want to start yours can’t be ruled out. This is why it is very important to gather as much facts and figures before choosing a location to set – up your cupcake business.
These are some of the factors that you should consider before choosing a location for your cupcake business;
- The demography of the location
- The purchasing power of the residence of the location
- Accessibility of the location (closeness to major road)
- The number of cupcake shops in the location
- The local laws and regulations in the community / state
- Traffic, parking and security et al
17. Hire Employees for your Technical and Manpower Needs
Aside from relevant software applications such as CRM software applications, accounting software et al and perhaps POS machines, there is hardly any technicality involved in cupcake business. When it comes to operating a cupcake business, it is important to ensure that you acquire brand new bakery equipment. As a matter of fact, kitchen utensils and equipment are affordable.
Some of the kitchen / bakery utensils and equipment that you would need to launch your bed and breakfasts are;
- Industrial Oven, Microwave Oven, Fridge, Pans, Cutleries, tableware, sound system, flat screen TVs, and POS machines
If you have the required finance, it is to your advantage to acquire a property or lease a facility to be used for your cupcake shop; it usually gives you the freedom to design the facility the way you want to it to be. But if you are low on cash, then you don’t have any option other than to rent a facility for your cupcake shop.
As regard manpower, if you are running a small scale cupcake business, you may not need full – time employees if you have family members that are willing to lend helping hands. But a standard cupcake shop would usually hire Shop manager, professional baker, accountant, sales rep, delivery drivers, cleaners, and security men. On the average, a standard cupcake shop would have between 5 and 10 employees.
The Service Delivery Process of the Business
The business process involved in cupcake business is simple and straightforward; it involves getting your recipe right as regards the flavors, shapes and varieties of cakes that you intend baking. Once you have the exact details and numbers you want bake for the day, then you are expected to get your ingredients and the packaging (foil, and cardboard casing et al) on ground and then go into baking, designing of the cupcakes and then packaging of the cupcakes.
Once the cupcakes are baked and well packaged, then it will be display in the shop, supply to events as required, delivered via dispatch riders / van riders to customers or filled in the ATM as the case may be for some cupcake shops.
After the day’s sales, the books will be balanced, stocks will be taken and if need be ingredients and supplies will be re – stocked, the bakery, bakery equipment and shop will be thoroughly cleaned as requested by local kitchen inspectors (regulating authority) and all the kitchen utensils and equipment properly placed in the right position so as to get set for the next day’s job.
18. Write a Marketing Plan Packed with ideas & Strategies
It is important to clearly state that in this dispensation, customers use the Internet to find almost anything including cupcake shops nearest to their location, to read reviews, to view varieties of cupcakes available and the location of the cupcake shop; loads of processes have gone digital. Which is why most cupcake shop are increasingly adopting technology and the internet for marketing and advertising their business – cupcake vending machine readily comes to mind.
These are some of the marketing ideas and strategies that you can adopt for your cupcake business;
- Advertise your business in relevant food and business magazines, local radio stations and TV stations (make yourself available for related confectionary and food talk shows and interactive sessions on TV and Radios)
- List your business on local directories / yellow pages (both online and offline)
- Direct Marketing
- Sponsor TV and Radio Programs
- Erect your signage in Strategic locations around the city
- Making use of sales Agents and sales reps
- Online Marketing (via your official website, social media platforms and blog et al)
- Referral Marketing
- Revenue Sharing Business Partners (Event Planners and Wedding Planner)
- Public relations during exhibitions
19. Work Out a Reasonable Pricing for your Services & Products
It is a fact that any fluctuation in baking ingredients (flour, butter, sugar, eggs, frosting and cake decorations et al) directly impacts margins. One of the ways to get the right pricing and still make reasonable profit from cupcake business is to ensure that you buy cake making ingredients and supplies in bulk and perhaps directly from a manufacturers or a wholesale distributor. This will help you to mitigate cost fluctuations.
20. Develop Iron-clad Competitive Strategies to Help You Win
When it comes to competing favorable in the cupcake industry, you would have to be very creative to stay on top. Unique cupcake designs, great taste, varieties of flavors, excellent customer service and easy to locate shop are some of the factors that you can serve as your competitive advantage.
Another competitive strategy that you can adopt is to ensure that your sell your cupcakes at competitive prices if possible a little bit below the industry’s average prices and you can also ensure that people can order for cupcakes online and get it deliver to them.
21. Brainstorm Possible Ways to Retain Clients & Customers
No doubt one of the strategies that you would need in order to generate repeated sales from your customers and also to retain them is to ensure that you always have unique cupcake designs, great taste, varieties of flavors, easy to locate shop and your customer service delivery are always on point. The truth is that if the taste and quality of your cupcakes and customer service delivery fluctuates, you are likely going to struggle to get your customers coming back; people usually go to places where they are sure of getting good value for their money. You can also make uses of promotional ideas such as loyalty schemes, direct marketing, door drops, and merchandising.
Over and above, when it comes to business, no matter the industry that you choose to pitch your tent in, one of the easiest ways to increase customers’ retention and perhaps to attract new customers is to satisfy your customers always whenever they lodge in your apartment. If your customers are satisfied with your services delivery, they can hardly source for alternative service provider or products.
Statistics has it that one of the major reasons why clients source for alternative service provider or product is when there is a drop in quality, or if when most often than not they tend not to get what they are looking for when they visit your shop or office as the case may be. Another reason is poor customer service.
If you can continue to improve on the quality of your customer service delivery and also give your customers options (variety of cupcakes), then you won’t struggle to maintain loyal customers.
When it comes to managing your customers and building loyal clientele base, you should purchase a customized CRM software. With a customized CRM system you can easily stay in touch with your clients (you can carry out quick survey, you can introduce new products and prices to them without any hitch, you can felicitate with them on their birthdays and other anniversaries, you can send bulk SMS and customized e – mails and above all you can easily receive compliant and feedback from them).
22. Develop Strategies to Boost Brand Awareness and Create a Corporate Identity
If you are in business and you are not deliberate about boosting you brand awareness and communicating your corporate identity to the public, then you should be ready to take on whatever the society portray your business to be. One of the secret of larger corporations is that they are willing to spend fortunes year in and year out to boost their brand awareness and to continue to communicate their corporate identity the way they want people to perceive them to be.
If your intention of starting a cupcake business is to grow the business beyond the city where you are going to be operating from, then you must be ready to spend money on promoting and advertising your brand.
In promoting your brand and corporate identity, you should leverage on both print and electronic media. As a matter of fact, it is cost effective to use the internet and social media platforms to promote your brands, besides it is pretty much effective and far reaching.
Another strategy is to sponsor relevant TV and radio programs, advertise your business in relevant food and nutrition magazines and newspapers and also ensure that your workers wear your customized shirts during working hours.
23. Create a Suppliers/Distribution Network
If you are running a cupcake business, it is very important that you create channels for vendors to supply you cupcake baking ingredients and supplies et al. It will save you time and perhaps cost especially if they are the manufacturer or wholesale distributor. In order not to be disappointed, it will be wise to have more than one vendor / suppliers on ground.
So also, you have to map out good distribution network for your cupcakes. Of course you would not want to bake loads of cupcakes and wait for people to come and buy them; you have to go out there to source for market. The truth is that the more distribution points that you have (the more outlets you supply your cupcakes) the more profitable and successful the business will grow. It is the practice for cupcake companies to source for shops, malls, events, and market to distribute their cupcakes.
24. Tips for Running a Cupcake Business Successfully
The truth is that, irrespective of the kind of business you run, your ability to get all the members of your team on same page at all times is one of the keys you would need to successfully run the organization.
As the chief executive officer or president of the cupcake company, it is you responsibility to give direction to the business. Part of what you need to do is to ensure that you create time for office meetings; a time where challenges, feedback, projections and relevant issues are discussed. The meetings could be daily, once in a week or once in a month – just ensure that it is consistent.
Carrying out appraisals on a regular basis and training your employees will help you run your organization effectively. Encourage your employees to pursue certifications in their various area of specializations as it relates to your business; it will help your organization’s profile and of course it will help the individuals. You can choose to sponsor some of the certifications or pay part of the certification / exam fee.
Lastly, you should keep your doors open for suggestions from members of your team and you should be willing to reward excellent performance as at when due. It is a way of encouraging healthy competition in your organization.