It is perhaps not news in Kampala & neighboring residential suburbs like Namugongo how common and cost-efficient home baking has proven to be over the past few months. Well, I can’t really speak from a statistical view but I can bet it surely is considering the minuscule overhead costs and various other merits. However, I would like to inform the novice bakers out there and those who have wanted to try baking from home that it isn’t as easy as it seems. It is still a business and that carries with it an ark of responsibility. Here is what you might need to get started.
This feeling that the challenge of starting a cake business is too big is a primary obstacle so many
Ugandan bakers see blocking their road to financial stability and making their own successful bakeries. And yet, the basic process of building one can be as step-by-step as making your dough or cleaning up your kitchen. Stop procrastinating so much or waiting for your dream bank account balance, find a starting point and get moving.
That is not to say it is easy. But when creating anything small, a series of steps becomes manageable instead of a never-ending staircase you have to run up. I tried to come with a few steps if you are interested in starting your own cake business right there at home.
Get a strategic business plan
As with most of top bakery businesses around we have had the chance of interviewing, they started baking and decorating cakes and selling them to friends, family and a slowly increasing number of forwarded and curious customers. It is important to start laying out a business plan at this stage. It is the living structure for your company. It will help you create a pathway for success and prepare strategies for marketing, profit margins, competition and competitive advantages. You will also use your newly formed plan to share your vision with potential investors since your capital might not be so high (it rarely is the first time) and branding experts.
Inform your landlord
In case you are renting, it is imperative you let your landlord know about your intention to start a cake business. You could never know how things might go if anything goes wrong either in your kitchen or with the neighbors.
Have a mentor
Unless you want to go through every single challenge more than three times to get through it I would advise you to have a professional baker you can always consult when something gets rough in your business. There are lots of generous bakers who are more than willing to help you with their journeys and tips to help get through it as simple as you can. Do not be afraid to reach out and have someone to show you the ropes because you are not the first.
Register your Cake Business
This is perhaps that physical transition from selling cakes to your friends and family as a hobby to a profession. If you want to save yourself from future headaches, it is very important to register your Cake Business with your appropriate governing district council so that you can get your trading license.
Open a Business Bank Account
Your cake business finances should be kept separate from your own at all costs. Take a day and research which of the banks around offer the best rates for your business account. This may seem like an extra step when you are in the thick of business planning, but choosing a bank that goes the extra mile for small businesses is vital to your success. Look for dedicated business checking accounts with low or no fees, small starting deposits and online or mobile banking tools geared toward making your cake business start-up easier.
Create a brand for your Cake Business
Branding is more than a clean, eye-catching logo and a standard set of colors you use for things like product packaging, business cards or employee uniforms. Decide what the emotional resonance of your company should be and then use that to inform all your branding choices. Once you have decided on a look and feel, stick with it. This may sound expensive to a lot of bakers but I mentioned before in a previous article that there are lots of professional designers fresh from school who are more than ready to execute their prowess at very low costs compared to the ones you might find in Kampala.
It goes without saying that you will need a name for your cake business and business cards to reach out to your market.
Spread the word about your Cake Business
Believe it or not your bakery products are already on demand even before you start baking. Tell everyone you know that you are baking cakes as a business. Ask them to spread the word and share the information on your social media pages. Use every opportunity you can find to spread the word about your business and ask happy customers to leave testimonials or comments and to share to their fellow companions. If you have a particular area that you specialize in think about different ways to get your name out there. For wedding cakes talk to other wedding venues and see if you can leave your business card or poster in their premises. Keep posting and shouting and customers will flock to your business.
Don’t undersell yourself
As tempting as it always is to try piercing the market by lowering your prices I highly recommend that you don’t do that. It isn’t uncommon to find bakers who have problems on how to price their cakes. Work out how much your ingredients will cost for each cake, baking costs plus however much you would like to be paid for your time and skill even though you are fresh on the scene.
Lastly enjoy the process! It is why you joined the art of baking after all. Take great care and joy in each cake you bake and it will be obvious to your customers how much you love your work as always! That is a mantra in this industry.
I hope you pick something helpful out of this article & take your skills to a new level. In-case I might have left something out reach out to us here at Uganda Trimmings Limited. Till next time.