The wedding cake industry is tough. Long hours and hard work are required for making your business a success. So, any bit of extra income can go a long way to help. That’s where cake stand rentals come in. On average, our cake stands rent for $50 an event. If you rent just one cake stand once a week for a year that is an extra $2,600 in your pocket. Not bad for a one-time investment. Plus, by offering your own rental cake stands, you can ensure that when you arrive at the event you will have a safe and beautiful display for your cake. That’s what I call a win-win. So, how do you make sure that cake stand rentals are actually profitable for you? Follow our five easy tips and you will be well on your way towards putting some extra income in your pocket.
To start off your rental business, you need a cake stand that compliments a wide variety of cake styles, is available in your most popular cake sizes, and is durable enough to last. Our cake stands happen to meet all these requirements! Our classic pedestal shapes work for any cake style. We offer cake stands from size 10 inch to 18 inch (all of the most popular wedding cake sizes) and they are available in a variety of colors. Lastly, our cake stands are made from powder coated carbon steel as opposed to delicate glass or ceramic material. This makes our cake stands more dent and scratch resistant than other cake stands on the market today.
BONUS TIP: Select three cake stands in your most popular cake sizes and then build your collection slowly over time. These should also be in colors that your clients are most likely to want. We love 10 inch hot pink stands just as much as you do but a 14 inch white cake stand will likely bring in more money. That’s why Sarah’s Stands offers cake stands in the most popular sizes with the most in-demand colors. You can check out our full collection of cake stands here.
#2 - TALK TO YOUR CLIENT
If you don’t tell your clients about your cake stand rentals then they won’t know about it and you won’t maximize your income potential. During your cake design consultation, introduce the idea by asking the client what type of display they are planning for the cake. Or, when you offer up sketches of the cake design, include a sketch of one of your cake stands. Or, when you show pictures of your previous work, make sure the pictures include your cake stands. Then, simply ask the client if they have a cake stand or if would like to rent one? If they don’t have a cake stand (and most will not), you can then show them your collection and tell them the details about your rental policies. And, don’t be concerned that the cost of the cake stand rental will add too much to the client’s overall cost. The client is preparing to spend hundreds if not thousands of dollars on a cake and another fifty or so is unlikely to scare them off. Most clients do not even think about the cake display until the last minute causing a lot of stress all around. By offering cake stand rentals, your clients will appreciate the full-service treatment you are offering and be thankful that you are taking one task off their endless to-do list. You don’t need to be pushy but simply make them aware of the options available to them.
#3 - BE CLEAR
Offering clear, concise information about your rental cake stand policy is crucial. Not only will this make you appear more professional but it also lets your clients know exactly what they are responsible for and prevents any confusion later on. You can add this information to your current cake design contract and have your clients sign it and provide them with a copy (either digital or paper). This gives them something to refer to after the event when they are in the process of returning the cake stand. It takes almost no time to do and helps quickly and simply resolve any potential disputes. Things to consider including in your contract: - Size & color of the cake stand being rented. - When and how the cake stand will be delivered to the event. - Expected return date, time and location. - Who is responsible for returning the cake stand and their contact information. - The condition you expect the cake stand to be returned in. - What happens if the cake stand is returned late, is damaged or is lost. - Rental price. - A deposit to cover the cost to replace the cake stand if it is damaged or lost (consider including shipping costs).
#4 - GET A DEPOSIT
No matter how durable your cake stand is nothing can save it from Uncle Joe’s drunken cake toss, a disgruntled cater waiter dropping it down a flight of stairs, or a happy-go-lucky groom letting it bounce around in the trunk of his car. For these reasons and a thousand more, don’t let your cake stand leave your sight without getting a deposit first. The deposit amount should be the cost of replacing the cake stand and it is in addition to the rental fee. This money is given back to the client after the cake stand is returned to you at a time you specify and after you inspect it for any damage. Something unexpected eventually will happen to your cake stand but, if you get a deposit, you will recuperate that loss and still be able to continue making money. The easiest way to handle a deposit is to charge the customer’s credit card and then issue a refund for the deposit amount after the cake stand has been returned safely.
EXTRA TIP: Working with a company that can quickly ship out a new cake stand in the event of an accident ensures your rental income never skips a beat. (Sarah’s Stands offers 2 Day Shipping and, under special circumstances, can do overnight deliveries, too.)
#5 - BE ORGANIZED
You don’t want your cake stand rentals to become a major time sink. You have amazing cakes to make and this shouldn’t take away from that but merely support it. So, make sure to take some time, in the beginning, to organize everything and set yourself up for success. Here are some tips to keep in mind: - Designate a safe place in your shop to display your cake stand collection that can easily be seen by clients. - Display a small sign about your cake stand rentals with your collection and include some basic information or who to contact to find out more about it. - Create a calendar or spreadsheet so you can see at a quick glance where your cake stands are and which cake stands are available to rent when. - Create a file to store your cake stand rental contracts. - Plan a day, once a week, to go through your contracts and issue deposit refunds as needed. And, there you have it! With a little planning and some great cake stands, you can easily be on your way to supplementing your income by renting your cake stands. If you have any questions or if you already are renting your cake stands and have some advice, please share in the comments below.