When the lady seller at the coconut milk stall in the market gives a positive response that I can put my cupcakes at her stall gives me a motivational impact. This is a starting point to be an entrepreneur. I start thinking on the way home from the market.
Yes, I’m happy about this. In my mind, I think differently. There are 10 questions lingering in my head.
- Can I manage to make a large number of cupcakes?.
- Can I maintain years to make cupcakes?.
- Do I feel tired of making cakes every day to sell?.
- Can I focus on making cupcakes as a daily activity?.
- How sure I am to venture in this cupcakes business?.
- Can I make it for a long time?.
- Do I have the energy to run this business?.
- Do I mentally strong to face the consequences in the business?.
- Can I proceed to make cupcakes if there are no sales?
- How do I stay focused?
Answer to the 10 questions
The answer is not like the question that I can pinpoint. The answers would be like a chain that links from the start to the end. Doesn’t matter if the answers do not follow accordingly. As long as it answers my question it will be fine.
For the question I raised, I have to find my answers and solution along the way. It is neither sweet nor bitter. There is no specific answer to the question. The question I put to myself is to make things better whenever the turbulence comes.
I know there is not a straight answer but the question is a guide for me to stay afloat when the turbulence began. When I could not make a judgement, the question is a judge for me to keep on track.
How I start making cupcakes
I started making cupcakes with coconut oil in the late afternoon after coming back from the market on the day itself. I’m making one batter for the beginning. I decided on two flavours. The flavours of pandan and classic flavour, marble.
The decision to make these two flavours is that it is a basic taste. Majority of people can take this flavour. Somehow it is like a traditional cake. I put three cupcakes in one of each casing.
The next morning, my daughter and I went to the stall to send the cake. I spoke to the lady seller and put the cake on the stall and returned home.
In the afternoon, my daughter comes to collect the cake and she calls me. She said the cupcakes could not sell on the first day.
What to do is your cupcakes cannot sells
I told her never mind. Bring the cake home. At home, we discuss what to do with the cakes. At last we made a decision to reduce the price. It works and one packet is sold on the second day. On the third day there were no sales.
The cupcakes can last for four days but I sell for three days only. On the third day, I made a new badge of cupcakes. This time, we sold one cupcake each. People buying one or two.
After a week, my cupcakes cannot sell. Instead of bringing it home, we gave it to the people in the market to taste. After three days, I continue making new cupcakes. Even if there is no sale, we still place the cake at the stall.
We did this to get people’s trust. Maybe they will buy it later. We make our cupcakes available for them to have it at their own sweet time. No pressure from us.
Of course we feel down when there are no sales. We have to be stronger and patient to face the consequences. We must sell cupcakes everyday to gain people’s trust even if there is no customer to buy.
Later, we put cake for testing in a jar. So people can taste it before they buy. This effort does work. Our cupcakes slowly pick up. Days of sold cupcakes are more compared to the no sales days.
Who is the customer
We asked the lady seller who is buying our cupcakes. According to her, there are repeat customers. Most of the time the small children buy it. Now we know, kids like our cupcakes. We baked healthy cupcakes for kids.
In the second month, sales gradually increase. Now, not only kids, adult are starting to buy cupcakes. We appreciate them for supporting us. We now think to add up more flavour to our cupcakes selection.
How to maintain the customer to buy our cupcakes
We understand over the period of time, customers want more flavour. So we add a vanilla flavour with chocolate chips. Customers like this flavour. Soon this flavour sold out.
There are days the sales are slow. We have to think of new ideas to enhance the cupcakes sales. We make a fourth flavour, milo with chocolate chips. This flavour is also a hit with customers.
As per our records, I had made 120 cupcakes per month. I hope this number grows.
Trip to baking ingredient centre
Nowadays, I like to go to one stop baking ingredient centres. This store sells baking ingredients for professionals, chefs, bakeries, small and medium scale enterprises, modern housewives and hobby lovers.
Every time I go to this store for my baking ingredient, I love this display of decorative baking ingredients. While in this store, I get an idea to enhance my cupcakes flavour or to add more flavour.
During one of those trips, I got the idea to add blueberry and orange flavour to the cupcakes that I bake. So now we have six flavours of cupcake that we sell at the Pasar Selayang Baru.
How to enhance the cupcakes with reduce sale
There is a problem of pandan flavour. Pandan cupcakes are fragrant but gradually customers have less interest in them. I should do something since I make organic pandan extract. I make my own pandan extract from the pandan plant in my garden.
So I added up chocolate topping with chocolate rice on pandan cupcakes. Now the customer is buying pandan cupcakes with chocolate topping.
Nowadays cupcakes are sold out. If there is a day that all the cupcakes are sold out, I have to bake fresh cake for the next day.
If before I used to bake every three days but now I have to bake everyday to fill the demand.
If the 10 questions answered
Within three month, we face the situation as my 10 questions. Day by day, we try to improve the cupcakes presentation.
We changed our way of selling the cupcakes products by enhancing the cupcakes taste and added the new flavour.
Yes. All my questions had been answered in the above manner. The questions help us to stay afloat with check and balance.
It is still a long way to go!