Turning Product Loss into Profit with ‘Cake Toppers’

Jun 4, 2019

About

Location: Harvest Market | Fort Bragg, CA
Owner: Jennifer Bosma
Annual Sales: $25M
Difficulty: Easy

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Strategy

“While the baking process rarely yields perfectly flat cakes, you have to start with a flat surface when decorating, so bakers use a knife to cut off a thin layer at the top of the cake. But what happens to that delicious cake that is sliced off the top? If we have a future bride and groom coming in for a cake consultation we pair our white and chocolate cake tops with a variety of fillings and frostings until they find the perfect combination for their big day. If we don’t have any happy couples coming in for a taste test that day, we simply package up the cake toppers and sell them in the bakery next to the full-size cakes. This creates a product that customers love from what would have otherwise been waste. In fact, customers enjoy them so much, we have several who have asked us to contact them when we have cake toppers available.”

By the Numbers

  • 100 Sold
  • $430 extra profit on something we would have just thrown away

WHY IT WORKS

For Our Shoppers

Good Deal
Customers get around a pound of cake for less than $4. You can’t beat that.

Tons of Possibilities
The cake toppers are great for snacking, but also starting point for recipes. From cake pops to parfaits and trifles, there is so much you can do with the cake.

Family Fun
Since there is no baking involved, kids of all ages can lend a hand when frosting the cake toppers or transforming them into another recipe.

For Our Store

Eliminates Waste
We hate to see anything go into the trash can. Cake toppers keep the product out of the landfill and make our customers happy in the process.

Added Profit
Cake toppers help us create additional profit in our bakery.

Generate Good Will
Our customers appreciate our efforts to reduce waste and they love that they get a great deal on a tasty cake.

Pricing

The cake toppers sell for $3.99 for one large or two small cake toppers. They typically get about a pound of cake for that price.

Step-by-Step Tactics

  1. Before decorating a cake, check to see if you have anybody scheduled to come in for a taste test.
  2. If you do, cut up the cake topper into small pieces for the tasters. If not, leave the top whole to be packaged for sale.
  3. Package the cake topper minimally with price and ingredients.
  4. Place the cake toppers next to the decorated cakes and be prepared to answer customer questions. Once customers learn about the concept, the toppers are likely to gain their own following and will fly off the shelves.

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