Mary Berry eat your heart out. Forget bake off, money making baking is on.
The Champion Idea
Let’s bake…selling the tasty treats you create can turn into tasty extra income.
Earnometer (out of 4):
From a few pounds to thousands a month – if you are serious about creating your own business.
A love of baking and cooking. A creative flair is a definite help as presentation and differentiation are recipes for success.
Anybody can bake with a bit of practice and learning through the wide range of recipes, advice and courses you can find online.
Check your local authority rules. If you are more than a casual baker you are likely to need to register with the Food Standards Agency and your local authority and get a food hygiene certificate and liability insurance.
What makes you really stand out? Bake sales are common up and down the land. Think about what gives you the edge over the competition? Organic, gluten-free, no colours or preservatives, a distinctive style, taste or look?
Research your local area – where are the fairs, boot sales, markets, school fetes or even cafes and shops you can sell directly to (again having something different really helps).
Start off small, test and learn. Get a low cost stall at a local bake sale and see how long it takes you to prepare and what the customers like (and don’t like) and what they are willing to pay for it. Receiving and acting on ‘real world’ market research and feedback is vital to any money making idea. Keep practicing recipes and presentation to create your brilliant bakes.
Keep a very close eye on costs. Ingredients, stall hire and set-up, travel, equipment, packaging, energy costs, hygiene costs and of course your time – it all adds up. Be honest with yourself and also factor in some contingency. Then work out what you need to sell at to make money. If you start by treating baking like a mini-business rather than a hobby you will have a head start in making money. Shop around, buy in bulk and look for discounts and sales (especially for must have equipment) to keep things affordable.
Remember to market yourself – this is the key way to get bigger. Create a professional looking website and use social media sites including Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest. Add lovely photos of your portfolio. Consider a Facebook page. Create some business cards that show off your wares. Gather great customer testimonials and case studies. Think about catering for local kids (and grown-up) parties.
When you are confident about your product and your ability to produce more think about approaching business customers. Anywhere where kids congregate could be a good start to display your tasty treats and snacks. Could you deliver to local businesses? Could you cater for corporate parties? Could you branch out into weddings and other events? Research a list of good targets, search your network for good contacts, come up with a strong and simple pitch, bring samples…and wow them with your unique twist, passion and personality.
Try and gain some local PR with some fun stories and achievements or an unusual cake or bake – the local press are always looking for interesting pieces and pictures.
See our Champion Guide: Make more money from car boot sales
The Food Standards Agency – how to start a food business
Car Boot Junction – find a car boot sale near you