New Year, New Goals: 5 Ways to Grow Your Food Business in 2022

December 29, 2021
June 24, 2022

As we approach the beginning of a new year, it’s natural to reflect on what worked (and didn’t work) this year — and where we want to go next year. 

We’ve talked with thousands of independent culinary artisans, cottage cooks, bakers, and other kitchen-based creators about their homemade food businesses, their business goals, and the things they’d like to start, stop, or continue doing.

Below, we share five goals to consider adding to your list of 2022 resolutions.

Make More Money

I know, I know… “make more money” might seem like a vague goal for the new year. Who doesn’t want to make more money? You are running a business, after all. The price of ingredients, rental kitchen space, marketing, and your own labor increases each year — and so should your product prices. 

Here are a few ideas to help you make more money in 2022:

Start Earlier

Do you ever feel like you can’t keep up with holidays, seasons, special events, and other orders? Even though Christmas was only four days ago, it’s time to start thinking about Valentine’s Day orders.

In the new year, set yourself up for success by planning ahead on holidays and events. What are your busy seasons? If you take custom cake or cookie orders and you know that high school graduation season always brings a flood of orders, consider opening your spots for those weeks early and taking reservations well in advance. Or, if you know you don’t want to take special requests during a specific holiday or time period, set boundaries and let your customers know ahead of time so that they can plan accordingly.

Do you offer a pre-sale for your holiday products? Consider opening pre-orders earlier this year, or closing orders a little earlier so that you have more time to prepare (or more time to relax before you get busy!).

Build a Website

Speaking of pre-orders, how are you managing them? You’re not stuck shuffling through Instagram DMs, Facebook messages, and emails for them, are you? 

No matter if you sell weekly boxes of assorted pastries for pickup, custom cupcakes, or ship loaves of sourdough across the country, an ecommerce website can help you streamline your entire business. Your customers can still reach out to you with questions via social media or email, but they won’t have to wait on your reply to place and confirm an order with you. 

At Castiron, that’s our business — we’re building the easiest, fastest website tools, exclusively for independent or home-based food entrepreneurs. Add products to your store, upload your logo or a cover image to brand your store, and start taking payments for products in a matter of minutes. Ready to simplify your business in 2022? Sign up for Castiron today. It’s free!

Partner with Other Businesses

Local businesses love to support other local businesses. Is there another independent artisan in your town whose products complement your own? Make it a goal to partner with them in 2022.

You could partner with another food business, but you don’t have to. Here are a few ideas for local collaborations: 

When you partner with local businesses, not only are you getting to know another member of your business community, you’re also opening up a new marketing channel. Decide how you’ll promote your collaboration with the other business — could you get in front of their social media followers or a mention in their email newsletter?

Set Monthly Sales Goals

If you don’t set a goal, you’ll never achieve it. Want to sell $1,000 per month? Write your goal down and work backwards to figure out how you’ll reach it. 

If you sell cinnamon rolls for $30 a dozen and you want to sell $1,000 per month, that means you need to sell around 35 orders this month. If you’ve been posting on social media for a while and know that each Instagram post typically results in five new orders, how many times do you need to post on Instagram this month? If you know that posting in your city’s local foodie Facebook group typically generates a few orders, how many times should you promote your business there? If you know that an email to your customers results in a dozen new orders, it’s time to start drafting your email. 

If you don’t have a good idea of how your marketing can drive sales yet, don’t panic! Test out different marketing strategies, events, and collaborations to see what works best for your business. Every artisan will have different results based on their location, target audience, and product line. 

What are your goals for 2022? How are you going to achieve them? If you’re ready to take your business online in the new year, sign up to access Castiron’s free website building tools today. Have questions about Castiron? Want to share your goals? Post in The Kitchen, our community of independent culinary artisans, and we’ll answer them! 

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