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How to Start a Bakery Using These Unique Tips

May 6, 2021 2558 views

A man and woman standing in a bakery holding bread

Tips Insights and Considerations Before You Start a Bakery

The steps for starting a bakery are similar to other businesses. Rather than go through each step here, like, write a business, plan, choose a location, register your business, get a tax ID, etc. I think it’s better to spend time on bakery tips and considerations before you begin.

For now, let’s focus on your goals and expectations, then we’ll move on to important points to consider before you start your bakery. Once we are finished with that, I’ll guide you to the steps to starting your business.

What You Need To Consider Before You Start A Bakery

Let’s go over some important questions about your bakery that can help you take a look at the big picture.

Are You Considering a Bakery Business for the Right Reasons?

  • Why are you starting a business?
  • Why a bakery?
  • Are you interested in improving your lifestyle?
  • Do you want to be the one in charge?

One final question to ask if you had all the money you would ever need for the rest of your life, would you still start a bakery?

What is it with all these questions? The answer is to identify how passionate you are about starting a bakery.

When you have a passion for the business you’re running; you have increased your chances of success because passion gives you the driving force you need to start and keep going when problems show up.

It’s not easy to start and run a successful business. That’s why you must be starting your bakery for the right reasons.

For more details, see the Reasons To Start a Business.

What Are You Expecting From Your Bakery?

When you set expectations, you avoid getting into something blindly. Many people will look at a business owner and think, they have it made, look at how good life is for them. I want that, and I’m going to start my own business.

Sure owning and running a successful business will give you a lifestyle change. But what does it take to get there?

The people looking at other successful business owners are looking at the end product. They didn’t look into the years of struggle and hard work it took to reach success and experience a lifestyle change.

Set your expectations to something realistic, and that will keep you from getting discouraged. See,  What to Expect During Your First Year of Being a Business Owner to give you an idea of what to expect.

The Pros and Cons of Running a Bakery

Pros of Running a Bakery

  • You can make your bakery unique by using specialty recipes that you control.
  • There is profit to be made if you keep your costs down.
  • You can start small and expand as your customer base expands.
  • You have many options for customization, for example, baked goods only, baked goods and sandwiches, desserts, etc.

Cons of Running a Bakery

  • Professional new equipment can be expensive.
  • Long hours of operations plus your hours of prep and clean up.
  • Unsold items need to be disposed of, which is a 100% loss.
  • When dealing with food, there are many food safety regulations.
  • You must be very careful with your ingredients for people with allergies. A mistake could be life-threatening.

For more on the pros and cons of running a business see, the Pros and Cons To Consider Before Starting a Small Business.

Bakery Startup Costs

Your startup cost will vary. You may be able to start from home as a home-based bakery with a few hundred dollars, or you may need $100,000 or a million dollars if you want to buy a building in a high traffic commercial location.

No one can tell you what your cost will be unless you have some planning in place, except for opening a franchise.A man organizing baked good in a display

When you figure out the following, you’ll get a ballpark amount for your startup costs.

What Type of Bakery Are You Considering?

The type of bakery you open will naturally affect your startup costs.

Will you be opening a bakery where people can sit and have coffee or just choose baked goods to go from your display counter?

Will you offer more than just baked goods, perhaps a deli and lunch menu?

Home or a Commercial Location?

Will you start from your home, or will you start from a commercial location?

For example, if you opt to lease a commercial location, you will find a difference in price per sq foot for leasing. The better the location, the more expensive your square footage will be.

Staffing Consideration Costs

Will you be running everything yourself, or will you need to hire employees? If you consider an employee can cost on average $25,000 per year, it makes you think about who you hire and how many employees you genuinely need.

Equipment Cost Considerations

Whether you purchase, new or used equipment will affect your startup costs.

Different brands offer different prices. So do your research to figure out what’s best for you.

As you can see, the type of bakery, your location, the staff needed, and your equipment will all affect your startup costs. Without having a plan, you won’t be able to determine your startup cost. A detailed thought-out plan will get you closer to finding out how much of an investment you’ll need.

Bakery Startup Cost Research

In this section, you’ll find a few keywords for the latest search results to determine your costs.

Copy and paste the following keyword combinations in your favorite Search Engine, Twitter, Youtube, and Facebook search bars.

  • Home-Based Bakery Costs
  • Commercial Bakery Costs
  • Bakery Equipment Costs
  • Lease Bakery Space Cost Per Sq Foot

The results from the above will give you the latest and one step closer to determining your startup cost. Also, remember you can create a simple spreadsheet to keep track.

For more see, Estimating Startup Costs – Are You Missing Anything?

Bakery Operating Costs

Similar to my views on startup costs, the same principle applies to operating costs.

No one can tell you what to expect for your cost. Each business is different, and depending on how you manage and set up your bakery will define your operating costs.

The key is to keep your costs to the bare minimum WITHOUT affecting your operation. You can’t sacrifice quality and services, but you can cut any cost that doesn’t affect operations.

If you lose control of your costs during the early stages of operation, you may be out of business, and you’ll have to close your doors and find a job.

It will be tempting to purchase the toys, create an awesome office, and get the things that make you comfortable. I suggest you hold off on buying any perks for 2-3 years or until your business is stable and making a decent profit.

A young man standing a bakery holding bread

In addition to spending on perks, you need to watch your payroll costs. If you take the average cost of an employee at $25,000 per year and have four employees, you may be out of business because you can’t make payroll. Do as much as you can without hiring.

If you’re starting in a big city on a busy street, you probably won’t be able to go it alone and will have to hire employees to keep up with demand. On the other hand, if you’re starting as a home-based bakery, you may be able to run it as a one-person business.

A Simple Rule:

Cut all costs that don’t affect operations and avoid new costs that do not improve operations and profitability.

Bakery Profitability and Revenue

I see questions like, “how much do bakery owners make” What does it matter what others make. You can’t base your profits on what others are making because there are many variables involved.

Many people look at the profit per sales or a percentage of sales. But here’s my question: If you’re making a 20% profit on sales, how do you know that will be enough to cover your overhead costs? Also, if you have $100 in sales per day, the 20% profit equals $20 per day. Hardley enough to cover any costs.

Suppose your bakery is open on a busy street in downtown New York. Your expenses will be a lot more than someone opening a bakery in a small town. Sure, you’ll have more sales, but will those sales cover the extra costs? It’s something you need to consider.

Two People working a bakery

You may have done some research and found it’s a 20% profit, and that can give you a vague idea, but you need to tie that in with your operating costs and sales volume for a better estimate of your profitability.

Sometimes when looking at starting a bakery, I’ll come across something like,

“The bakery industry is an 11 billion dollar industry!”

So What? That means nothing to me. Will I make 1% of that? No. Will I make .05%? Again, No.

I’ll be in good shape if I can open and stay open and see growth in the first few years.

When it comes to profitability, keep quality up and costs down. Keep an eye on what you’re doing to identify trends, opportunities, and red flags. Improve your profits when there is an opportunity that will not degrade quality and customer service.

Bakery Name Ideas

Your business name is an important part of setting up your bakery. The name should be catchy and memorable.

The name of your bakery probably won’t change. Coming up with a name should not be a spur-of-the-moment decision but a process over a few days.

Your business name is something you’ll be hearing, writing, and saying for the next few years, so you want something you won’t get tired of, seeing, hearing, and saying. You want something that sounds good, looks good in print, and easy to pronounce.

Name Brainstorming Exercise

Create a list named “Bakery Name Ideas.”

Start by searching for a “business name generator” and enter the word bakery to generate ideas. Add the names that appeal to you from the generated list to your list.

Next, add more words to your list related to a bakery, including; industry terms, equipment, baking techniques, adjectives, experiences, your location, etc. The result may look similar to the sample below.

Generated Names

Strawberry bakery

Caribbean bakery

East Coast Bakery

Terms

  • Batter
  • Buttercream
  • Crumb
  • Flaky
  • Glaze
  • Bowl
  • Mixers
  • Oven
  • Baking
  • Tasty
  • Delicious
  • Baking
  • Delights
  • Treats
  • Los Angeles

From your list, mix and match words and phrases.

An example from the list above may be something like; Oven DelightsLos Angels Treats,  East Coast Baked Good, etc.

As you go through the process, new ideas will appear. List all the ones you like, and keep trying new combinations until you have a list of finalists.

Now, put the list away for a few days and come back to it with a fresh perspective. Choose from your finest and conduct a name search to ensure it’s available for registration.

For more on this topic see, How To Choose a Business Name Using These Proven Tips.

Bakery Registration and Permits

In addition to the regular business registration process, a bakery will require additional permits and inspections from your local food safety agency. Your equipment may also need to be certified before you are allowed to use it. It’s good to find out about these requirements from your local authorities and the FDA.

For the details involved see, How to Register Your Business Using These Resources.

Choosing a Location To Open Your Bakery

The location of your bakery is one of the most important steps you’ll take. If you get the location wrong, it could be the reason your business doesn’t succeed.

If you offer the best products and services and you’re in the wrong location, it won’t be easy to get any business. On the other hand, if your products and services are nothing special but you’re in a very good location you will have a much better chance of success.

Your location is going to affect your startup costs and your monthly operating costs. Naturally, you will have to pay a higher price with a better location, and you have to consider if the extra cost is worth the extra traffic coming into your bakery.A women making a purchase in a bakery

When it comes to location, it’s not just finding a busy location; it’s finding the right one. If you locate your business on a very busy street in a big city, that doesn’t mean you’ll be successful.

Suppose it’s difficult to get into or out of your bakery because of high traffic on a four-lane street. Even though it’s a very busy street, it’s not a good location because of the inconvenience of getting in and getting out.

You may be able to find a location where you can piggyback off other businesses. For example, a busy mall or a strip mall with other businesses that offer food or shopping, or anything that complements your bakery, is something to consider

In real estate, it’s always location, location, location, and for the brick-and-mortar business world, it’s pretty much the same.

One more thing to consider about your location is you may need to adjust your business plan depending on the location.

Suppose you find a great location in a business sector, and you were planning to open a bakery specializing in cakes. The people in this sector want something quick on their break or during lunch. Therefore your main focus is sandwiches, soup, donuts, and coffee. You can still create your cakes, but you have shifted your specialty to the market demand.

For more on this topic, see, Choosing the Best Location for Your Business.

Bakery Insurance

You must have the right business insurance for your bakery. You want to ensure you’re covered in case of an injury, a fire, theft, as well as food liability insurance.

Even if you lease a building, your landlord will want to have proof of coverage before they even give you access to the building. They have to make sure that you have enough coverage to cover the repair of their building in case of an incident.

Something else you may want to look at is interruption insurance that will cover your revenue if you are forced to shut down due to a disturbance.

For example, there is a fire in your kitchen, and you’re shut down for 30 days. Without interruption insurance, you lose out on the revenue during the time your business is closed.

I would do a Google search for bakery insurance to find an insurance company specializing in bakery insurance. I would speak to an agent and let them know you plan to open a bakery and need insurance coverage. They will ask you many questions. You’ll get an estimate, plus you’ll learn a lot about insuring your bakery.

For more, see my article on What To Know About Business Insurance.

Bakery Equipment

The equipment you need for your bakery is an area where you’ll need to take some time to do some research.

If you purchase brand new equipment, there is a big bill to pay, and a lot of your budget is being used.

On the other hand, if you purchase used equipment that breaks down, you lose productivity. You may have to turn customers away because you don’t have finished products to sell them, and you could have a huge repair bill.

You purchased used equipment to get a lower price, but you also get a higher risk of breakdowns.

Let’s look at the scenario for purchasing a used commercial oven.

Suppose you spend $2500 on a used oven. One month in use and that oven breaks down, you call a technician, which tells you the oven can’t be repaired.bread being put on a sheet pan rack

Now you have to buy a new one which costs you $7,500. Considering the $2,500 you spent and the cost of the new one at $7,500, your total cost now is $10,000 for a $7,500 oven.

Your cost is much higher than it would have cost you in the first place to purchase the new oven at $7,500, which is one of the risks of purchasing used equipment.

When looking at used equipment, it might be a good idea to get it checked out first. That way, you don’t fall into the scenario above. You may also want to look at getting used equipment that has been refurbished and has a warranty.

Some of the Equipment You’ll Need for Starting a Bakery Include:

Oven:

There are different types, and you’ll want to look into the pros and cons. Will you want natural gas, electric, or a baking stone? Also, consider a programmable oven. If you’re busy dealing with other things, you want your oven to shut off at the right time.

Comercial Refrigerator:

It would be best to have a decent-sized energy-efficient refrigerator that will pay for itself in a few years from the energy savings. You may also want to look at a freezer unit or a refrigerator/ freezer combo.

Commercial Dishwasher:

Depending on the size of your bakery, washing everything by hand may take hours or require a full-time employee. Once your at that stage, you may want to look at a commercial dishwashing solution that will cut your labor and time.

A dishwasher is one of the items you may put off initially because they are expensive and can be added later. Another benefit of adding a dishwasher later is you’ll have a better idea of the volume you have and can get one that is best suited for your needs.

Food Processor:

You can save time and effort with a commercial food processor to mix nuts, chocolate, and other materials used on your baked goods.

Racks and Shelving:

You want to take some time to think about your racking and shelving setup. A well-thought-out layout will make your kitchen more effective. A poor layout will make your kitchen hectic and unproductive.

Mixers:

A stand mixer is a lot more expensive than a hand mixer. You may want to buy both because you’ll need a hand mixer for delicate items like cream. You may even want to consider a floor mixer if you have space and volume.

Working Tables:

Stainless steel tables are a good choice for a food environment. They are strong and easy to clean. Ensure your tables fit well in your kitchen, are the right height and width. You also want tables that are food safe, sturdy, and can handle the wear and tear of everyday use.

Utensils:

You will need all the utensils needed for a bakery, and if you get busy, you can increase the quantity of each as needed. For now, you will want to consider.

  • Baking Pans
  • Mixing Bowls
  • Spoons
  • Spatulas
  • Sheet Pan Racks
  • Pastry knifes
  • Icing tips
  • Flour sifters
  • Comerical grade Stoage bins
  • Etc.

Display Cases:

There different shapes, sizes, and functions when it comes to display cases. Do you want lights on the inside? Do you need one with a cooler or a simple one with shelving? Each has its function, and each has its price.

Another consideration is if you want something designed to match the decor of your bakery.

Display cases in a modern bakery

Other Items:

Other items you may want to consider include:

  • Dough Sheeter
  • Bread slicers
  • Donut Cake Fryer

Purchasing Tips

You may want to purchase your equipment from one or two suppliers to get a better deal because of the volume. Consider starting with the bare minimum and expand as demand increases.

For the best results search for,” Used bakery equipment” to gain a quick idea of what is out there, then do another search for “new bakery equipment,” so you can compare functions and price.

Once you know which direction to take, call the business owner, don’t just order off their website. Create a list of questions similar to the examples below:

Suppose you are looking into purchasing a bakery oven, ask about its dependability? Ask if the oven is difficult or expensive to service. Find out if the replacement parts are always in stock or if they can be shipped overnight.

Ask about the warranty, and what it covers, and what it doesn’t. Ask if there is an extended warranty and maintenance plan and finally, find out what the supplier recommends. You will want to ask questions like those above for all major appliances.

Bakery Employee Considerations

Will you be able to run your bakery all on your own, or will you need to hire staff? With a large staff, you’ll have a large payroll to meet each week. Unless you have the sales to cover your expenses, you’ll have difficulty keeping your doors open.

You may start as a one-person operation and do everything yourself, which will be challenging because you have prep and cleanup. You need to service your customers. You need time to manage your business. A one-person show is attainable, but it means putting in many extra hours and limiting what you can do.A man holding a basket full of bread

If you’re planning to start in a busy location with thousands of people walking by each day, then it might not be a good idea to try and do everything yourself. You probably won’t be able to keep up on your own.

It isn’t easy to figure out how much help you’ll need when you’re starting. What you can try is to start with the bare minimum and hire as needed.

In the beginning, you can also ask friends and family for help during the first few weeks to get you going, and you never know sometimes that might work out, and they can be part of your staff.

For more on this topic see, Common Jobs, Needed for Running a Business.

How to Finance Your Bakery

If you need a loan for your bakery, you’ll need to determine how much money you’ll need, how you’ll pay it back, and you’ll need a business plan required by traditional lending institutions.

Another funding option is to find investors or find a partner. When partnering, you combine your resources and have more strength to grow the business.A bakery after business hours

You have to remember even though you still may have a controlling share in your company with partners, you have more people’s hands in the pot, and when you make changes, you’ll need to consult with them.

You can search for “bakery business loans” to find companies that specialize in bakery funding. Speaking with one of these companies can help you plan your business because they specialize in funding bakeries. They have a lot of experience in operations, equipment, and planning for a new bakery, and helping existing ones expand.

For more on finding, see, Here’s Everything You Need To Know About Business Loans.

Bakery Business Plan

A business plan is a good way to focus on the overall outlook of your bakery.

When you create your business plan, you are forced to answer questions in areas you may not have considered before. Creating a business plan takes time and effort, but once it’s complete, you’ll have a road map to fall back on.

Your business plan is not set in stone. Your plan can be updated accordingly and at any time. It’s good practice to review your plan to stay on track, make adjustments and see if you missed anything you had originally planned.

As noted in the financial section, if you need financing for your bakery, you will require a business plan.

If you are getting anxious about writing a business plan, you can use a template, use software or even hire a professional. For more, see my article on How To Write A Business Plan.

Bakery Business Cards

You’ll need business cards to hand out when you get the opportunity. Define the purpose of the card before you start your design. You could have two designs, one for suppliers and one for potential customers.

The card for potential customers can have a message on the back. Hand this card in for a free coffee on your next visit. Your card is now a means of marketing your business. And anytime you talk to people about your bakery, give them a card and ask them to stop by for a free coffee.

The card you create for suppliers works as a regular business card.

Your business cards should contain your logo, and the design should match your bakery’s overall feel and look. for more see, How To Creating Attractive Business Cards

Bakery Business Logo

Your logo is a graphic identifier of your business. It needs to be simple and effective. You don’t want a logo that is too busy. Your logo, like your business name, rarely changes, and you need time to come up with a logo that will last for years.

You can design your own, or you can have a professional design your logo for you. If you’re considering a corporate ID package, it will include your letterheads, business card, logo, etc. It’s all one package that matches.

For more on this topic see, How To Design A Business Logo.

5 Ways To Get Familiar With the Bakery Industry

Whether you’re experienced in the baking industry or starting from scratch, it makes a lot of sense to broaden your knowledge.

Below I’ll share five tips to get more information about bakeries and the industry:

1: Solid Research For a Bakery

Look at as many Bakeries as possible.

In your favorite search engine, type in “Top Bakeries.”

The results will contain some of the top bakeries in operation.

Here’s what to look for:

What Do the Bakeries Have in Common?

Determine what all the bakeries have in common and list them. You want to make sure that you offer the products and services that make sense to you.

Keep an Eye on Pricing:

You can list the pricing for your most important baked goods to compare them with your pricing.

You may want to note the location because the price of baked goods sold from a bakery located in downtown New York will differ from the bakery prices in a small town in Idaho. For more expanded on this topic, see How To Set Prices To Improve Sales, Revenue, and Profits

Is There Anything Missing?

While looking through the top bakeries, ask yourself if anything is missing. If there is, it may be an opportunity to add that product or service into your bakery.

Now it’s time to go back to your favorite search engine and type in “Bakery Reviews.”

If you find lots of results, you have the opportunity to see what irritates people as well as what they enjoy and expect.

With reviews, I like to focus on the negative ones. It would keep me from making the mistakes of those already in the bakery industry. It can be an eyeopener and well worth your time to study bakery reviews.

2: Check Out Bakeries For Sale

Let’s search again. This time type in, “Bakery for sale.” You should have a list of bakeries for sale near you and other parts of the country from the results. Have a look at every listing. Look for profits, monthly expenses, and any trends.

To take it a step further, contact the owner to ask questions. When you contact a business owner looking to sell their business and are ready to answer your questions, you have hit the information jackpot. You now can speak with someone getting out of the business and ask almost any question.A woman displaying baked goods in a bakery

This tactic is not meant to be sneaky. You may even find a bakery that’s a good fit and end up purchasing one rather than starting from scratch. You can tell the owner you’re thinking of starting a bakery, but you are also considering purchasing one if it’s the right opportunity for you.

Here are a few sample questions you may want to ask the business owner:

  • What was the most challenging part of running your bakery?
  • If you had to do it all again, what would you change?
  • What did you like most about your bakery?
  • Do you feel you missed any opportunities along the way?
  • What advice do you have for me?
  • What can you tell me about your customers?
  • How old is the equipment?
  • Is your asking price negotiable?
  • Are there any leans on the bakery?
  • Is the bakery involved in any lawsuits?
  • What were your gross revenues last year?
  • What was your Net Profit last year?
  • What is your greatest expense? And why?
  • If I decide to purchase your bakery, will you accept a down payment and finance the rest?

For more on talking to business owners, see the details

in my article, An Inside Look Into The Business You’re Considering.

3: Bakery Franchise Opportunities

Buying a franchise takes out all the grunt work of starting your own business.

You start with a proven business plan. Your decor is already set for you. The products and services you offer are already set up. You find an ideal location, secure your funding, have a grand opening, and you’re pretty much ready to go.

With a franchise, it’s like a business in a box that’s already been tested. You also gain brand recognition. People know what to expect when they walk into your bakery because it’s like other bakeries in the franchise.Clapping hands over flour and dough

With a franchise, you do have monthly fees and a percentage of your revenue. You also have to run the business according to the rules. You cannot deviate and do your own thing. You’re part of a network, and you have to abide by the practices, so the overall franchise is protected.

In your favorite search engine, type in bakery franchise opportunities to see what’s available and then contact the owners for more information.

By interviewing the franchise operator, you’ll gain tips and insights into the industry. Whether you decide to purchase a business, start your own or get into a franchise, you’ll have some great information you can use for your bakery.

For more, see my article on, Here’s What You Need To Know About Owning a Franchise.

4: Dig Into The Industry

It’s time to search again. This time we are looking for resources related to the bakery business.

Bakery Trends and Statistics:

You may gain some ideas from the search results of “bakery trends.” You can see if the market is on an upward or declining trend.

Bakery Associations:

Associations are a great way to meet like-minded people and stay up to date with industry trends. A lot of associations also offer support, information, networking opportunities for their members.

Bakery Publications:

It’s important to stay up to date with the industry, and many publications offer tips and insights regularly. This search result will identify the latest publications related to the bakery industry.

Bakery Terminology:

It’s important to be aware of the terms related to your industry. Searching for bakery terminology will get you up to speed with the terms you need to know.

Bakery Software Reviews:

Searching for bakery software is a way to find computer programs that will work well for your business. When you go through reviews, it will save you a lot of time, and you’ll also get ideas for issues you may not have considered.

You’ll want to spend some time on the reviews because there is a lot of information to process.

5: Bakery Search Queries To Reveal Insights

Perform a quick Online Search for the following search queries.

Search For The Following Three Queries:

  • Bakery Problems
  • Business Mistakes to avoid
  • What to watch out for when starting a Bakery

Learning from other people’s mistakes saves you the agony of making the same errors. I pay attention to what not to do more than what to do because I want to avoid those issues.

Why should I reinvent the wheel? Instead, I can take some time to do a little research to find people willing to share their mistakes and take advantage of their stories and experiences.

A woman looking into a bakery display

Search For the following three queries:

  1. A Day in the Life of a Bakery Owner
  2. What’s It Like To Own a Bakery Business:
  3. Bakery Owner Interview

The above queries may return results containing the experience bakery owners have had. These are worth your time. You may be able to pick up a gold nugget or two from going over an interview.

This exercise takes about 30 minutes. If you are in a hurry, then you don’t want to rush through the interviews. Instead, schedule some time later.

Tips To Succeed In a Bakery

Bakery Menu

Have you considered if you’ll have a menu? A menu can enhance sales. Suppose you specialize in Boston Cream donuts, but one day you run out, and new customers walk in. Unless they see a menu, they won’t know you make Boston Cream donuts.

You can display a menu on the wall or if you have a seating area on the tables. Suppose you decide to create a menu. You want it to match the style of your bakery, and you want it to look great. You can search for bakery menu ideas to get the latest results and get your creativity flowing.

Packaging and Presentation

Let’s think about packaging and the way you present your products? People that take your baked goods home can take them in a conventional white box like many other bakeries, or your packaging can be an opportunity for brand awareness and marketing.

Yes, it will cost you more to have printed boxes, but the branding and marketing could pay off. You could even create a box with a handle.

Now your customer may be walking down the street holding your attention-grabbing packaging, displaying your bakery’s name, and advertising for you.

You could even invest in the reusable grocery bags you see at grocery stores for customers that purchase multiple items. Keep in mind these bags are Eco-friendly and reusable, so your name will be floating around for a while. They sell for less than a dollar retail.

Giving a free bag to your customers is a value-added reason to purchase from you, and they are advertising your name and building your brand.

What Types of Baked Goods Will You Offer?

Have you considered what types of sweets you’ll be offering to your customers?

You have to test your products and ensure people like what they taste before you open your bakery. Don’t depend on your friends and family. They may be just telling you it’s good, so they don’t hurt your feelings. You have to do some real testing by random people to understand what your customers will experience.

Imagine going to all the trouble of starting your bakery to find out that no one likes your product or doesn’t find anything special about your baked goods.

You can improve the success rate of your bakery by ensuring your products are desirable and have a unique taste and something people enjoy. Most of all, they have to be very tasty to attract repeat business.

Bakery Recipes

Do you have special recipes that are exclusive to your bakery? And if so, have people tried them, and do people like them? Your recipes can be the major advantage you have in the marketplace.

KFC, for example, has its herbs and spice recipe that’s locked away to this day. They even get their supply from separate companies to help keep their recipes secret. Their recipe is key to their success.

You can look for recipes from other cultures to see if you like any and add the products to your bakery, making your selection of baked goods unique.

Baked goods, including bread and pumpernickel displayed nicely on a table

Tips To Market Your Bakery

Grand Opening

Once your business is set up and operational, you may want to spend a few thousand dollars on your grand opening.

We had a restaurant that opened up in our neighborhood a few years back, and they went all out on their grand opening. They didn’t have much of a show-style event; instead, they offer free meals for three full days.

The lines went around the block. The restaurant was known in town because of its grand opening, and I remember the place was packed solid every day for three months.

You may think free food that will break me. Don’t think of it that way; instead, budget this as a promotion. It’s a tax write-off, and it’s one of the best ways to get your new bakery to become the talk of the town.

Ensure you don’t run out of food, and you may want to hire additional temporary staff during your grand opening to keep up with the demand.

If things get out of hand where your lineup is so great that you can’t handle the demand, I would give out free coffee in the line and tell people there’s a long wait, or you can give out vouchers if you do run out of pastries and coffee that way they can come back another time when it’s less hectic.

For sure, it’s going to be a frantic first few days, but it will be well worth it.

Radio Advertising

Pay for advertising on your local radio station as a guest.

For example, on Valentine’s day, you could create a special heart cake with a teddy bear and a rose. You could explain how you wanted to create something unique, simple, and delicious. You could tell the audience how you make them and what makes them so tasty.

You could also give away cakes to callers of the show plus offer a discount for the radio show listeners that show up and ask for the radio discount.

Radio dread repeating the same thing and are looking for a different angle related to the current events.

Occasion Marketing

Offer specials during special occasions. For example, on St. Patrick’s Day, you could offer a special for that day, take out an ad in your local paper, and on the radio to promote your specials. The same would go for Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, etc. The key is advertising during those times and creating something special for that occasion.

Partner Up with Local Businesses

You can partner up with local businesses. For example, if you’re located near a business, where people have to wait for service. You could talk to the owners and have their customers wait at your bakery and get a free coffee or something along that line.

Some people will take the coffee and enjoy the time, which is a good way to welcome a future customer. Others will feel obligated to purchase baked goods because they are receiving your free coffee. Either way, you are getting people through the door.

In return, you recommend your partner’s business. You could have a display that has a message supporting our local businesses and having business cards for your partners on your counter.

Steps To Starting Your Bakery

The steps to starting a business are very similar. For example:

  • Writing a Business Plan
  • Fund Your Business
  • Choose a Location
  • Choose a Business Name
  • Permits, Licenses, and Registration
  • Etc.

Instead of listing all the steps in this post, I have created a separate post. See my article, Here Are The Essential Steps To Start a Business; you can use it as a checklist when starting your bakery.

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