Party with product clusters, trays
Buying for parties or gatherings can be daunting for people accustomed to buying for only themselves or their families. The customer has to consider a wider variety of taste preferences while purchasing enough to go around but without waste. An in-store bakery can help by clustering items, such as this three-pack of party-ready rye breads. This adds an element of convenience, saving the consumer time in product selection while still providing variety. And because a party pack groups several products together, the customer assumes a better value proposition than could be attained by purchasing the items individually. The party pack concept also translates well to desserts. Consider a tray of six cupcakes, six pie slices and half of an 8-in. round cake.
Want fries with that?
Hand-held treats that are easy to eat without a knife and fork are perfect for customers on the run. Create a unique product out of an old stand-by by offering pie fries. Simply brush strips of piecrust with butter, top with cinnamon sugar and bake to create a perfect snack or dessert. Amp up the fry quotient by using a zigzag cutter to recreate the jagged edge of a French-fried potato. Offer pie fillings in small bowls to mimic condiments. Strawberry or raspberry pie filling masquerades as a great ketchup. Use appropriate packaging to continue the theme.
DIY decorating kits
Give busy customers the tools to create their own finished baked products without having to worry about the baking by providing home decorating sets. Most bakeries already have everything they need to assemble the kits. Start with one- or two-dozen undecorated cookies or cupcakes, and bundle them with two or more filled pastry bags in various icing colors. Add extras like sprinkles, picks, toppers, dragees, candles or toys for customizable treats. The decorating sets provide fun activities for children and educate any consumer base on how difficult–hence expensive–extravagant decorating can be. All the while, the in-store bakery is saving on decorating labor.
Let them eat cake
In-store bakeries often try to be all things to all people, and offering multiple sizes of the same product at the same time can help achieve that goal. Small, 4-in. size cakes and tortes appeal to empty-nesters and single-person households while the larger 5- or 6-in. product is better suited to slightly larger families. For customers with even bigger families or wanting a dessert for a party, the 7- to 9-in. sizes are ideal. Using additional dessert items as decorations, such as the macarons showcased here, help add portions while offering an alternative dessert option.
Add a twist
Pretzel rolls are great at luring center-aisle shoppers into the bakery. Food celebrities are calling for pretzel rolls in gourmet burger recipes, and consumers see them as an affordable way to change up traditional meals. Beyond buns and rolls, pretzels in their characteristic twisted form or in interesting new shapes and braids are naturals for displays. Cover the finished pretzels with traditional rock salt, go upscale with fleur de sel, or get creative with sesame seeds, poppy seeds or other toppings. Fill the pretzel holes with small plastic cups containing spicy mustard, molten cheese or sweet icing dips.
Breakaway from boring
Clamshell packaging has its place and for showing off product, it is wonderful. However, break away from traditional packaging, and mix it up with non-traditional bakery packaging ideas that can be just as affordable. Use a produce flat to showcase your strawberry decorated cookies. The simplicity of the packaging allows the cookies to be in full view. Use a plastic overwrap to ensure freshness and sanitation. A table full of these decorated cookies very well may have customers wondering if they wandered into the produce aisle by mistake.
Buy Buy Miss American Pie
Nothing is more American than pie, and while the classic pie is still popular, offering variations can only boost sales. Pie pops, cup pies, pies in jars, gourmet pies and unique flavor combinations will attract an array of customers. Smaller pies, such as those in small mason jars, offer the perfect size, flavor, calorie count and price for many consumers. Unique sweet and savory flavor combinations also will appeal to a wide audience–pair apple with sharp cheddar, pecans with bacon, blueberry with tarragon, cherry with sage or chocolate with chili. Some flavors to watch include fig, Kaffir lime, blood orange, lemongrass, lychee and coffee.