Custom cakes or cookies? Holiday pre-sales? No matter how you sell, we'll make running your bakery easy as pie.

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Castiron is a software platform purpose-built to help independent food artisans start, build, and grow their businesses.

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Castiron is 100% free for artisans to use. We know how important a professional digital presence is, which is why our platform is free forever. And because we know you’re wondering, we make money when you make money, applying a small transaction fee that’s paid at checkout.

What we do for you

We’ve tailored Castiron to fit the needs of kitchen-based creators who are selling their products to family, friends, and followers through word-of-mouth and social media. After a super fast setup (if you can create a social media profile, you can set up a Castiron shop!), you’ll have a single place to sell, manage orders, and communicate with customers.

Build a Customized Shop

No code required. Add products, upload your logo, share your story, and link to your social profiles from your flexible store.

Make Buying Painless

Never track down a payment or oversell products again. Real-time inventory tracking and secure payment processing make life easier for you and your customers.

Promote Without the Effort

With our magical marketing tools, email and social media marketing are on autopilot. We make it easy to promote your latest products and deals.

Home Bakery Software: How to Choose the Right Tool

During the last few years, interest in home baking has soared. This trend grew exponentially in early 2020, as the coronavirus panic closed many restaurants and limited commercial foodservice operations. Along with sanitizers and toilet paper, flour was another commodity that began to disappear from store shelves. Some people entered the home bakery business to share their culinary pursuits. Others sought a temporary solution to supplement their income during a difficult time, while a large number hoped to develop a home-based business to forge a new path.

Whatever their reasons for becoming cottage cooks, these new home bakers encountered a variety of challenges. Some jumped head-first into the batter without investigating applicable cottage food laws in their state or local ordinances that might limit how home bakeries operate. Even those who researched the legality of home-based baking businesses may have overlooked whether electronic commerce restrictions might prohibit them from selling their products to out-of-state customers without having a mechanism in place to collect sales taxes.

Cottage food laws and regulations vary by state, county, and municipality. Inexperienced home-based entrepreneurs may have questions about labeling requirements for baked goods, the frequency of health inspections in their residential kitchens, or if restrictions exist on distributing free samples if not properly packaged.

States often limit the types of products one can sell, as well as the location, or the amount of revenue one may earn from these activities. A loaf of bread baked in one county may be sold at a farmer's market in one jurisdiction, but prohibited at a similar location in a different jurisdiction. Some locations may require a permit to operate a cottage bakery, while others expect the permit to be displayed.

Once clearing these hurdles, the home baker must secure appropriate insurance, acquire the beginning inventory of food products and ingredients, and other necessary supplies.They have to condition themselves to track mileage and other information essential for business deductions and taxes. The home baker also has to forecast financial projections, consider the best marketing options for their baked goods, and become aware of competition in the area.

These challenges a home baker may face illustrate the importance of having a bakery management system in place. Long before they proof their first loaf of bread or bake their first cake, cottage cooks with the best software for bakery business management can track orders, prepare documentation, manage inventory, plan for special events, and handle a number of other tasks. The days of trying to keep file cards or handwritten notebooks as a way to manage a home-based business have passed.

Best Apps for Home Bakers

Today, smart bakers who operate from their homes understand the value that high-quality bakery software brings to their business. When considering the best apps for home bakers available on the internet, you should evaluate how the features and options can be customized to meet your business needs within the location you operate. The bakery software should offer an intuitive, interactive way for you to manage your bakery business.

Getting some traditionalists to transition to a computer is a big step. Others comfortable with computers may rely on software they used years ago for different purposes. For either of these at-home bakers, counting on yesteryear's software may cause more frustration and difficulty than they expect. Keeping recipes and nutritional information on a word processor, contact information on a spreadsheet, inventories on a database, and upcoming special orders on a separate calendar program will have the baker spending more time on their computer than in the kitchen.

An app for home bakers offers a single location to manage these and other facets of a home bakery business. Castiron offers free home bakery software available to everyone, one that allows culinary artisans to organize various facets of their business on a free and convenient bakery app so they can devote time to their passion of baking, build and extend their networks with like-minded creators and satisfied customers, and create a profitable and empowering enterprise.

Features available in the baking apps free download portal at Castiron meet the needs of most home-based bakers. The home bakery inventory feature allows you to track ingredients, supplies, and manage recipes. You have an accurate estimate of the supplies on hand, so you can purchase or order from your suppliers the necessary supplies and materials you require to meet your anticipated demand.

This software allows you to set the cost of each order, manage inventory, and keep track of customer information. You can manage custom order requests if you're a baker who specializes in complex cakes or cookies, or you can simply sell a set line of products that customers can check out with instantly.

You have a single location to examine forthcoming orders and deliveries on your calendar. When tracking online bakery orders, you can review order history, add annotations regarding customer preferences, and describe templates or designs for orders as a point of reference for future orders.

Free Bakery Software for You

Castiron's free bakery software has both a public face and a restricted portal where you can manage the behind-the-scenes processes for your home-based bakery business. Our company offers software solutions for a variety of cottage industries, and we understand that time spent on an app should benefit your business directory rather than waste your time. Similarly, our bakery software, free for you to use, offers a platform that allows your loyal customers to have positive interactions and offer an inviting online presence for new customers interested in products available from your at-home baking business.

The free home bakery software from Castiron permits you to manage many facets of your home-based business. The bakery inventory management system allows you to track supplies and ingredients internally to keep sufficient stock on hand and reorder wisely, while also allowing you to specify the number of products available for sale. This feature externally notifies customers when an item has sold out, so you do not have dissatisfied patrons who order a product that is no longer available.

The online ordering system for bakery products allows customers to review available inventory recently baked in your oven. You can describe available products as vegan, ketogenic (low carb), Kosher, or appropriate for other types of diets. Our labeling system and online portal give you the ability to identify items that have dairy, eggs, nuts, or other ingredients that may have common allergens.

The Castiron app benefits home bakers who operate in a variety of settings. Some bakers perform all business functions from within their homes. Others may sell products at a farmer's market or as part of a larger catering service. Regardless of your home-baking business plan, Castiron's free app for bakery orders facilitates ease of communication between you and your customers, other vendors, caterers, or foodservice businesses.

The customizable Castiron online ordering system for bakery products is tailored to the needs of a cottage industry baker. Our app maintains relationships with already-established customers by recording their order details and preferred methods of fulfillment. The app encourages flexible fulfillment options and keeps track of special orders by customers. The bakery order tracker allows for back-and-forth communications for custom orders, as well as ways to track messages and develop invoices. The Castiron app's functions allow for enhanced marketing, email communications, and automated notification.

While making bread in your home's oven, Castiron allows you to manage the "bread" you earn through your cottage bakery business. Castiron's bakery POS software handles point-of-sale transactions, online payments, and allows you to see a breakdown of prices, fees, and taxes. Staying compliant with taxing authorities is imperative, and the Castiron app allows you to collect local and state sales taxes as you market your home-baked products.

Bakery Accounting Software

In developing and running your home-based baking business, you may want to consider other platforms that offer bakery accounting software. Some cottage bakers prefer to handle bookkeeping for bakery business activities themselves, while others contract with an outside party to manage their bakery accounting transactions.

Although Castiron does not provide accounting-specific tools through our home bakery software app, the various ways it permits you to control inventory, coordinate marketing and outreach, and handle transactions will streamline your business process. This is true whether you choose to handle accounting in-house or with an outside firm. Our bakery management software gives you the organizational tools for all facets of your home-baking business, so you can organize and quantify sales and inventory with whatever bakery accounting spreadsheet free or for purchase you choose to use for accounting purposes.

If you choose to perform accounting functions at home rather than with an accountant, consider the best software for small bakery functions that matches your business model. Assure that you can clearly enumerate entries for credits, debits, and the cost of goods sold. Seek an accounting package that permits you to transition any handwritten ledgers or paper invoices and receipts into a software program that organizes financial information into categories that make sense for your home-baking business and taxing authorities with which you file returns.

Ensure that this accounting software offers remote backup of financial records, as well as the ability for you to maintain records through any audit or other external review that may occur. By matching the best accounting software or hiring an accounting professional to keep your financial books in order, you will have the icing on the cake for your bake-at-home business.

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