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How Do I Open a Cupcake Store?

A frosted cupcake.
A cupcake decorated with marzipan roses.
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  • Written By: S. Gonzales
  • Edited By: A. Joseph
  • Last Modified Date: 27 March 2014
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Opening a cupcake store is a dream for many people. Despite its appearances, though, running a cupcake shop requires much of the same hard work and dedication that is invested in other businesses. If you want to open a cupcake store, you need to think about licenses, capital, location, recipes and uniqueness.

Potential business owners should first realize that starting a cupcake shop is very similar to running any other food-orientated business. Obtaining certain licenses required to operate a business involving food might be a priority. In addition, as owner of the business, will have to keep on top of sanitation standards.

Like other business owners, those interested in opening a cupcake store should start thinking about capital. Finding the money to fund business operations, including baking equipment and supplies, rent, utilities and renovations is an integral part in opening a cupcake store. You will need to think ahead and plan for the future. For this reason, it's a good idea to keep an account with enough money to cover at least three month's worth of these costs.

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Choosing a location is an important part of starting a cupcake store. Most business owners will have better luck in areas where there is not much competition. Placing a store in a strategic position, such as next to other popular stores, can help sales. For start-up businesses that can't afford the costs associated with a physical location, virtual stores might be the answer. Business owners can fully operate their stores from their websites; the same can be accomplished using an old-fashioned mail-order catalog.

You also must, of course, invest in the recipes of your cupcakes. Original recipes that result in irresistible cupcakes are a key ingredient to any successful cupcake store. You should spend time researching and testing recipes. You might even attempt to create your own special recipes before opening a cupcake store. If you are having trouble finding new recipes, simply putting a new twist on an old recipe can be a hit with customers.

As the owner, you must also decide how you will make your cupcakes stand out from the competition. Uniqueness places value on a product, and that extends even to cupcakes. Cupcake shapes, decorations, presentation and pairings can all set apart a cupcake store from the next. The cupcake shop itself also can adopt a specific philosophy. For example, a cupcake shop can be geared toward vegans or sell sugar-free treats to those with special health considerations.

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Discuss this Article

anon264461
Post 4

I own a cupcake store called Cupcakes To Go and I love it. It's very time consuming. Your whole day every day is making and decorating cupcakes, but if that what's you love to do, it should be no problem. But for me as an owner, I have it the hardest because I think I need to do everything. Hopefully, I'll find someone I trust so I can take a break.

PelesTears
Post 3

@Amphibious54- There are a couple of great pastry shops and cafes around the city that I take my wife out to for coffee and brunch. Places like Amandine or La Provence serve everything from cupcakes to Parisian macaroons as well as breakfast, brunch and lunch fare.

These are the places where you can make the best out of your wait, enjoying your time with friends while enjoying tasty food. I'm sure there are others, but these are the ones I frequent depending on where I am in the city.

Amphibious54
Post 2

@glasshouse- Cupcake stores in Los Angeles are everywhere. I love cupcakes. I could eat one every day if they would not make me fat.

What I would like to see is a good cupcake store sell a good cup of coffee. That would be the best combination ever. Two things I love more than anything served at the same place. Everything good in Los Angeles requires waiting in line so a combination cupcake store coffee house would make life so much easier.

Glasshouse
Post 1

It seems like a lot of people want to open cupcake stores. The popularity of such stores reminds me of the popularity of frozen yogurt stores in the nineties and Ebay stores in the early part of this century. I almost want to wonder if they are going to have a big bubble then bust as the previous two have done. Cupcakes seem to be one of those things that is very trendy.

There is a store not far from my house that sells these little cakes for up to $10 a piece. I have never bought there cupcakes (mostly because I am not into pink, decorated sweet pastries), but my fiancée tried their goods a couple of times when they first opened. She lost interest really soon, mostly because all they had was cupcakes and similar pastries. There was no variety, and cupcakes are not an any occasion food.

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