Baking for money is a dream of many who love to spend time in the kitchen. I can really relate, I remember years ago trying to figure out how I could possibly generate money from home baking. Friends and acquaintances often recommended I should open a business selling my baked goods. It sounded tempting, but I wanted/needed to be a stay at home mom.
The Health Department may prohibit you from using the kitchen you bake for your family in to make product to sell to the public. Laws in some states are starting to change, so if you are lucky, you it may be much easier for you to get started.
I guess that if you live in a state with cottage laws, you will be able to avoid the start-up expense of adding a licensed commercial kitchen like I did. You can start on a smaller scale, start saving part of your profits to put toward the purchase of commercial equipment to make your job easier.
First steps to start a business
You may think that first you just have to print up business cards and you are in business. I guess some people do that, but that’s not how I would recommend you start. There are a lot of rules you have to comply with according to the government, and I will get to that later. Before we get into that, I want you to do your due diligence. You have to do some research. I don’t mean asking your friends and family what they think about your business idea. Of course they will encourage you, but how about potential customers who will actually pay you.
If you make the most amazing tasting frosting coupled with artistic cake decorating, you probably won’t have too much trouble, but if your specialty is a little less mainstream, you will want to do your homework to make sure that people are going to line up, cash in hand, to purchase your products. That sounds logical, right? The problem is – where do you start doing that type of research?
Start with some numbers
You may think that the first step in market research would be to set up a table in a busy spot and start handing out samples, asking for feedback. I would like to suggest that you might want to start with your computer. You can use a keyword research tool and do some basic keyword research. I use Google Adwords and Wordtracker. Both of them are free to use. You can learn a lot about the interest. Put in keywords that describe your product or service, and see how many times it was searched for. With the Google tool, it shows searches per month, Wordtracker shows daily searches.
Remember that is just a starting place. Next go and see if you have competition. It is natural to feel excited if you don’t see anyone else out there, but proceed with caution if there is no one else out there doing what you want to do. It is certainly possible there just is not enough interest to make a profit.
If you like what you see with that market research, you are not done with the numbers quite yet. Have you figured out the total cost what it will cost to make your products. I know that this is getting long, so for today I want to suggest that you spend some time checking things out.
We can talk more next time about other things to take a look at before you make the decision to go for it. I sure want you to be successful, and I don’t want you to make some of the many mistakes I made. We can talk about the next steps in launching your business.
Let me know what questions you have about starting a food related business. Don’t forget to think outside the box…oh, there is still time to get in on my free group coaching call on 1/26 . Check out all the details about my Free Group Coaching calls