Taking postal orders can be a really great source of consistent income in your cake business, but there is alot of different things to think about before you dive right in so it’s important to make sure that you’ve got all your ducks in a row before you go trotting off the post office with your baked goods!
I have recently started to take postal orders in my cake business and one thing I would definitely recommend is doing a trial run before you start advertising for orders.
Posting your bake to a friend enables you to:
1. Test out the postal service
2. Make sure that your bake arrives in the same great condition that it left you
3. Obtain customer photos to use in your marketing
4. Obtain customer reviews to use in your marketing
When posting your bakes, you need to ensure that any packaging that is next to the bake is food grade packaging. I would also recommend using packing peanuts or something similar to ensure that the bake does not have much movement in the postal box. You could also consider including a little card with a gift message if the bake is being sent as a present.
I recommend always posting your bakes using a next day delivery service for a couple of reasons:
1. The postal service isn’t reliable enough to post your bakes as standard on a Thursday and expect them to be there for the weekend – particularly as at the time of writing, we are in a pandemic and close to Christmas – both being factors that delay the postal services.
2. The longer the bake takes to arrive, the more time is being taken off the shelf life of the bake once the customer has got it.
When supplying postal bakes, the cost of postage is passed onto the customer so you are not going to be out of pocket, and I am sure that the customer would rather pay a little extra to have something that is going to arrive on the day they want it, and guaranteed to be fresh.
Now onto the really important information – postal bakes are considered “pre-packed food” and this means that the labelling requirements are more extensive than bakes that the customers is ordering and collecting from you. I spoke to my local EHO about this to ensure that I had the correct information and she said that you must:
1. List all of the ingredients used in weight order
2. Highlight the allergens present in the bake
3. Provide a Best Before Date
4. Provide the Net Weight
5. Provide your contact details
I now include all of this information inside the box with my bake when posting out to customers. Please bare in mind that if you are going to create standard documents/stickers with this information on, you will need to stick to the same recipes/ingredients to ensure that the information on the label matches what is inside the box – this is absolutely essential. If you would like to read the full information regarding the labelling requirements for pre – packed food, you can do so here.