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Turning your baking hobby into a successful business

One of the best things in life is to have a job that you love. Not everyone has it and the reasons can be many from lack of capital to lack of time, lack of knowledge to the fear of failure and fear of losing your investment and your already-established source of income from a job-in-hand. But with some careful planning, there is no reason for you to put off your dreams of becoming an entrepreneur. Let us look at the initial planning to start your own business, selling baked goods.

Research is the first step to starting any new business venture. You may excel at baking, but there has to be enough demand for your baking products for the business to work.
– Find out the state of your competition in your local area. Is anyone selling baked goods that are similar to what you plan to sell? What special skills can you bring to your baking business to stand out from other bakeries? What makes your baking products special? Make a list of such questions that pop into your head and answer each one honestly.

– See where you stand in terms of your business idea vis-a-vis your direct competitors in the baking business. Do you need to tweak your product offering? Can you switch your ingredients to make your baked goods healthier or different than what is available in the market? Think of all the ways you can add a unique touch to your products and be realistic about it.

When making a switch from hobby to business, you need a proper strategy.
– Begin with the scope and size of the business. If you want to test the waters first before taking the full-time plunge with your baked goods business, it is always a good idea, to begin with a business on the side while staying put in your current job or profession.

– Consider your costs. You need capital to buy ingredients, equipment and for packaging. Find out about the laws in your state regarding small businesses and home businesses. You will need money to pay for licensing or registering your business. Depending on how many hours you are putting in your new business and cutting from your old job, you will also need some savings for your other expenses.

You don’t have to straight away open your own shop to sell your baked goods. You can put your new business on solid footing by trying different avenues to market and sell your products.
– Begin with occasional or weekly business opportunities. Farmers’ markets are a great way to start selling your fresh baking products and build a loyal customer base. You can also pay for stalls in local fairs or take orders for special occasions such as birthday parties and such. Later, you can approach local grocery stores, cafes, and restaurants.

– Create a social media page to market your business. Network and attend as many industry events you can as possible.

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