For anyone with a passion, the thought of turning a hobby into a full-fledged business sounds like a dream. The same is true for bakers of all skill levels. Now more than ever, it seems like home businesses are springing up everywhere. In the era of end-user selling platforms like Etsy and affordable web design options, now is the perfect time to seize the entrepreneurial spirit. First, though, there are a few steps to starting an at-home baking business.
Investigate Your Local Laws and Licensing
Before starting any business, you need to understand the laws of the state where the company will operate. You’ll want to get familiar with what foods require a food license to make and what falls under Cottage Food laws. Research the process of obtaining and upkeeping a food license and any other relevant licenses. Lastly, the savvy entrepreneur will need to file for a tax ID and register their business. Setting up a business requires a lot of paperwork, but it’s best to understand the law and get it right the first time to avoid fines and red tape.
Put Together a Strategy
Once the paperwork is out of the way, the fun can begin. At this point, you can do what you do best—test and select recipes that will be part of their menu. Aside from perfecting your baked goods, now is a good time to assess various costs. Figure out the value of the ingredients that go into each item. From there, establish a reasonable consumer price. Determine what platforms you want to use to sell your wares. Analyze how to ship products safely and the costs this entails. Once you have all this information, you’ll have a strong map of the business and its upkeep.
Creating and Selling Product
The final step to starting an at-home baking business is to put the plan into action. Put the final touches on packaging and branding. Creating ingredient labels is also very important as most states have laws that require it. One way to test your packaging’s effectiveness is to take your products to local venues like farmers markets and listen carefully to what customers notice most. It’s alright to change things and add new products, but it’s important to have a reliable image, even in a bakery. Once you’ve settled these details and are happy with your products, you can start to focus on the process of creating goods and building clientele. At this point, your bakery business dream is well underway!