Blog 2018-09-25T21:37:13+00:00

The Future Landscape of Software Hosting: What’s Right for Your Business?

Would you rather manage your data locally or allow a third party to host it? Do you prefer to maintain your own server, knowing you will have to replace it when it fails? Are you prepared to upgrade your equipment and devices every few years? One common dilemma businesses face is whether to adopt web-based software or continue hosting their software on-site. As the world migrates to cloud computing, the choice may seem obvious. But there are still many factors to consider when facing your next software upgrade. With seemingly limitless choices, it can be difficult to narrow things down. The first basic question to ask yourself is whether you want to host the software on your own server(s) or contract with a company that will host it for […]
By | March 4th, 2016|

Healthy Eating vs. Sweet-Tooth: The Everlasting Dilemma

A recent article in bakingbusiness.com took on the complicated nature of consumer eating, investigating the seeming contradiction between the rise in health-consciousness and growing spending on snack foods. Fully two-thirds of American adults report indulging in snacking, while nearly half replace meals with snack foods. At the same time, the types of snack foods Americans report eating are changing, with 45% of people citing nutritional value as a factor in their choices.   Fueling the growing snack foods market are millennials, many of whom reach for a snack four times a day. While some indulge out of boredom, others want a burst of energy during busy days that don’t allow for sit-down meals. The need for healthy, convenient foods is driving the rise in consumer […]
By | February 17th, 2016|

Sell Dough to Boost Holiday Satisfaction

Does your bakery sell dough? Home baking may be rooted in America’s vision of the holidays, but many consumers are pressed for time and can’t make fancy holiday treats from scratch. Buying finished, unbaked dough allows them to enjoy your high-quality products while still filling their homes with the warm scents of gingerbread or butter rolls — and even express some creativity without making quite such a mess of their kitchens. For consumers, it’s a win-win scenario. Want to give dough sales a try? Here are a few ideas to start with, all holiday-friendly:
  1. Sugar cookie dough: a versatile classic, package this dough with a few different cookie ideas your customers can make with it. Real Simple has ten […]
By | December 4th, 2015|

Free Samples: How Giving Away Samples Boosts Sales

Offering free samples to your customers can have dramatic positive effects on sales.

Customers like free samples — consider this article about a beloved bakery where the author got a free slice of bread at every visit: the bread didn’t just give this customer a sense of delight and increase his feelings of loyalty toward the bakery. It turned an errand into a treat, encouraging him to make an extra stop after work more often. When the bakery was sold, the new owners put an end to the free slice of bread. Fresh bread? Yes, please! (Of course, your hand will have a glove on it.)

“Worst of […]

By | October 2nd, 2015|

A Party Without Cake is Just a Meeting, and other truths to inspire your marketing and merchandising campaigns

What makes customers buy a tee shirt from a café, bakery, or restaurant and wear it around, advertising that business to everyone they meet? For some, it’s a special love for that particular business. For others, it’s a foodie identity, a feeling of being in-the-know about good food and where to find it. Some might find a slogan funny or irresistible, or a logo or design thoroughly charming. There’s even a list at Food and Wine of their picks for best food-related tee shirts, including this one: A party without cake is just a meeting T-shirt How do you design a shirt that customers will want to wear? And once they […]
By | September 25th, 2015|

Should Your Bakery Publish a Cookbook?

Have you seen the Amazon cookbook bestseller page recently? Many of the top sellers come from bakeries: Magpie’s beautiful primer on pies, Momofuku Milk Bar’s spread of innovative modern dessertsTartine’s elegant collection of classics, and more. baking cookbook Cookbooks are purchased as gifts nearly twice as much as other books; put together an attractive package that highlights the unique character of your establishment, and you’re giving customers a great, non-perishable gift option that makes your business a topic of conversation right in the recipient’s home. Do you have to be a nationally-known bakery or restaurant with a celebrity chef before you can publish a cookbook? If you’re looking to play on the Amazon bestseller field, […]
By | September 2nd, 2015|

Reach More Customers: is a Food Truck Right for Your Bakery?

Want to be part of a popular cultural trend while expanding your business and reaching more customers, without the price tag of opening another storefront? Consider adding a food truck. While food trucks come with their own costs and administrative hurdles, they also come with quite a few perks, including visibility and flexibility. Food trucks can give you a presence at major events, introduce your brand to new audiences, and boost your social media impact. Check out these successful bakery food trucks for inspiration: LaFarmTruck La Farm’s bread truck (photo from Twitter) — come for a sandwich, but how can you not leave with a loaf of bread, too? French artisan baker Lionel Vatinet’s […]
By | August 31st, 2015|

Bakeries Strengthen Customer Rapport by Offering Classes

baking_class Do you want to strengthen your relationships with your customers? Give them a better understanding of the value of your expertise? Make more money during slower months? Try offering baking classes. Here Barb Gardner of Let Them Eat Cake talks about what classes have done for her, and answers the question “will my customers stop needing me if I teach them how to bake?” (spoiler alert: they won’t). Bonus: use your baking classes to improve your Facebook marketing. Scheduling events on Facebook is one of Swipely’s top social marketing tips for bakeries. You might even make a local news story, like Soonja’s Bakery in Dallas. Classes are a big part of […]
By | August 19th, 2015|

Three Leadership Traps to Avoid

Managing a business is stressful work. In the thick of things, it can be tempting to try to save time with shortcuts that hurt your company in the long run, or to preserve focus by shutting out distractions — such as employees’ needs. Protect your business from these three destructive management traps:

Discount your team’s opinions.

Richard Branson describes listening as one of the hallmarks of experienced leadership: “If you want to stand out as a leader, a good place to begin is by listening. […] Leaders who are great listeners are often terrific at uncovering and putting in place strategies and plans that have a big impact.” Ignoring your employees’ input hurts their investment in your company’s success — why should they care about the company, if […]
By | August 7th, 2015|

Four Ways the Western Foodservice Expo Will Rock Your Weekend

If you’re in the food business in the West, chances are you’ve already heard of the Western Foodservice and Hospitality Expo, happening this month, August 23rd-25th. On the fence about attending, or want to attend but don’t know where to start? Here are 4 things to do at the Expo that might help you decide.

1. Pick a Winning Strategy

Do you want some expert advice? Peruse the schedule of panels hosted by successful professionals in your industry. Too many choices? Here are our top picks:
  • What’s Hot & Not in the Social Media World for Restaurants Sunday, 12:30 Are you getting the most out of your social media campaigns? If you’re not sure, tweet your questions to #WFHE14. Experts will answer them in person during the panel.
  • Five […]
By | August 3rd, 2015|