Sugar Dot Surveys: Cookie Order Payments

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Welcome to Sugar Dot Surveys! Every other month or so, I post a survey to gather your input on a specific cookie or business topic. Once the survey ends, I compile the results and write a summary post here on Cookie Connection. (You can read my previous surveys and recaps here.)

There's so much that we can learn from each other!

Let's talk money - a sometimes awkward but very necessary conversation! I speak with a lot of cookie decorators who struggle with how to handle the money side of things with their customers. The answers to this survey will help you to see what others are doing so you can (hopefully) handle your invoicing and payment processing more successfully.

This survey is for those of us in the business of SELLING COOKIES. All questions refer to how you handle the invoicing and payment on your cookie orders. PLEASE DO NOT ANSWER THIS SURVEY IF YOU DO NOT TAKE COOKIE ORDERS.

Please answer each question keeping in mind what you MOST OFTEN do. Of course there are exceptions, but we can learn better when we see how things are handled in a typical situation.

Thank you in advance for participating!

Please share this survey with your cookie friends so that we can get input from as many cookiers as possible! I plan to start compiling results on September 15, so be sure to answer this survey before then.

ADDITIONAL INSTRUCTIONS (PLEASE READ BEFORE YOU TAKE THE SURVEY!)
(1) Open-ended (aka fill-in-the-blank or "Other") responses below are limited to 255 characters. If you run out of space on any question, feel free to elaborate in the comments area under this survey, but please identify the question (by number) to which you're responding.
(2) Unfortunately, our survey software will not allow you to skip questions. You must answer every one, or the system won't accept any of your responses. If a question does not apply to you, simply select "N/A" (not applicable) in multiple choice questions or write "N/A" in fill-in-the-blank questions. Thanks!

Let's get started!

Q1: Do you email an invoice to your customers in advance of order pickup/delivery?

Q2: When do you require payment for cookie orders?

Again, state your typical policy for most orders. Of course there are some situations (family, for example) that might cause you to bend policies, but we are not talking about exceptions here.

Q3: If you take deposits on orders, how much do you take typically?

Please answer in terms of percent of total order value (i.e., 30% or 50%, for example). If you don't typically take deposits, answer "N/A".

Q4: If you allow final payment at pickup/delivery (i.e., you DON'T require full payment up front), why?

Write "N/A" if this question doesn't apply to you (i.e., if you require full payment up front).

Q5: If you allow final payment at pickup/delivery, how typical is it for you not to receive full payment at that time?

When answering, consider any reason for not getting paid in full - i.e., no show, light on cash, forgot the checkbook, dissatisfied with your product (God forbid!), etc. Again, select "N/A" if this question doesn't apply to you (i.e., you require full payment up front).

Q6: Which of the following options best describes what you do when you are not paid in full at the time of pickup/delivery?

Again, select "N/A" if this question doesn't apply to you (i.e., you require full payment up front or you've never not been paid in full). If you select "Other", please clearly describe your collections process.

Q7: If you don't allow payment at pick up/delivery (i.e., you DO require full payment up front), why?

Write "N/A" if this question doesn't apply to you (i.e., you allow final payment at  pickup/delivery).

Q8: What means of payment do you accept for cookie orders?

Please check all that apply. If you choose "Other", please let us know what means you use.

Q9: Do you have a business bank account?

Q10: What program or method do you use for invoicing and/or accounting/bookkeeping?

Please check all that apply. If you choose "Other", please let us know what method or program you use.

Q11: What's your biggest frustration or problem that you encounter in the invoicing and payment process?

Q12: Please share your best piece of advice for managing invoicing and payments successfully.

Q13: How long have you been selling cookies?

Q14: Which statement best characterizes the type of cookie orders that you take?

Note: By "custom" orders, we mean ones that involve ANY degree of customization or personalization to meet customers' specific requests, i.e., adding writing, changing colors on an existing design, developing a brand new design, delivering at special times, etc. "Standard" orders are ones that involve preexisting designs with NO alterations, or are pre-orders of "special offer"-type sets to be delivered/picked up at times you designate.

Q15: If you take both custom and standard orders, do you handle the invoicing and payment processing differently for those different types of orders?

Please state "yes" or "no", and then explain how, if at all, you handle the invoicing and payment processes differently. Or, if you don't, why you don't. If you don't take both types of orders, then write "N/A".

Q16: Which statement below best describes where you make/sell your cookies?

If you select "Other", please describe where you make/sell your cookies.

Q17: Do you have a photo that you would be willing to share with us?

Dotty would love photos to go with the recap of this survey! She's not sure if any of you have pics of money changing hands or credit cards being processed, so how about sending in a photo of YOU cookieing . . . cutting dough, decorating, at your booth, teaching a class - whatever?! Please send your photo to Dotty through a private message here on Cookie Connection. Let Dotty know: (1) the photo description, (2) your first and last name, (3) your business name, if applicable, and (4) the link to your site, if applicable. Thanks!

To send a photo, just click on "Dotty" above in pink. That will take you to her Cookie Connection profile. From there, you can send a private message.

This is a transparent survey.
Posted by SugarDotCookies ·
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