How to be Successful at a Charity Bake Sale
Bake sales are a great way to raise funds and raise awareness for your local cause or group. Most people like to support their local organizations and it doesn’t hurt that most people also love desserts!
Whether you are organizing a bake sale for your local church, an after-school club, a sports team, or a community effort like a creek clean-up, bake sales promote community within your group and provide a good, fun way to earn some money. Follow these steps to organize your own bake sale.
Pick a Date and Location
If you are going to have multiple people contributing to your bake sale, you’ll want to make sure you have picked a date and location that is feasible for everyone. If you get a decent amount of foot traffic around your house, you can hold the bake sale in your front yard. Otherwise, if you want to host your bake sale at a church, school, or local business, you will need to get permission from that organization in advance. In this case, make sure that your volunteers don’t disrupt the normal flow of traffic for that organization and be sure to clean up all of your mess at the end of the day.
Look for volunteers within your organization or group and ask for support from others in your community. For example, if you are hosting a bake sale for a junior football league, get the parents and neighbors of the young athletes involved in the effort.
Give your volunteers specific directions. If other people will be contributing baked goods, let them know exactly when and where to drop them off the day before or the day of the event. Make sure you have a good count well beforehand of how many baked goods you will have to sell and how many items you think you will need.
Prepare Your Setup
You will need the following supplies for your bake sale:
- One or two card tables and plenty of folding chairs, at least one for each volunteer who will be on shift at any given time.
- Signs and decorations. If you aren’t very crafty, you can get custom signs delivered to your house in advance for the day of the event. Post signs around the area for your bake sale, but also be sure to make/order a sign for your booth that advertises the name of your group, your website, contact number, etc.
- Napkins, plastic cutlery, paper plates. You will probably also want to provide a cooler of water or lemonade and plastic cups. Provide a recycling bin for the cups and a large trash bag for other waste.
- Cellophane and ribbons for wrapping up your baked goods.
- Small signs or sticker labels for each baked good. This is especially useful if you will be coming up with cute names for your baked goods.
You will be more likely to sell your baked goods if they come with cute, silly names. These could refer to local landmarks (like Appalachian Trail Cookie Crunch Bars), recent events, or could just be totally silly. Ask your volunteers to help come up with names or to provide names for their donated baked goods.
Next, you’ll want to work on setting prices. This is a charity, so of course your prices should reflect that. You can set a few price points like $1, $3, $4, $5, $10, $15, and ask your volunteers to set their own prices on their goods.
And take advantage of this opportunity to spread the word about your cause or organization. Be sure to bring flyers and business cards along to hand out to others. Be sure that all of your materials advertise your name, website, social media links, phone number, email address, and a brief description of what your cause or group is all about.
You can also host a raffle to boost sales and interest. Contact a local baker to find out if they would be willing to donate something to be raffled off. This could be a box of donuts, a particularly fancy cake, or a gift card. Hand out slips of paper for people to put down their names and phone numbers for the raffle and include a bowl to collect the slips.
You should also include a tip/donation jar. There may be plenty of people who want to support you without actually buying something from you!
Have you had success with a Charity Bake Sale?