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Lessons from a bakery owner: how to grow a side business

2-minute read

Catriona Smith

22 November 2021

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Ever wanted to start your own baking business? We caught up with the founders of Butterwick Bakery, a sweet treat bakery business based in the Midlands, about just that.

Our side hustle research found that home baking is one of the top five trades people choose for their side business. So it’s inspiring to hear Butterwick’s co-founders, Fiona and Ryan Scarborough, share their journey from home-based celebration cake business to running their own shop and delivery service in Corby.

Home business to community bakery

Fiona started Butterwick Bakery on her own from home, initially just making celebration cakes and wedding cakes. She said: “I didn’t have enough hours in the day. This is where Ryan came in and said ‘let's grow’.”

On taking on their first commercial premises in September 2019, Ryan said: “We wanted to create a shop where people could walk in and order a celebration or wedding cake. So we thought why not sell a few treats on the side? What we found from day one is that we were mobbed, people wanted treats, cupcakes, brownies.

"We went from an expectation of hoping people turned up to being able to create hundreds of quality products.”

Now it’s part of the community

Ryan shared just how much the bakery has become part of the community in Corby:

“A customer walked in one day and said to me what we’ve created was a noun, nobody says let’s go and get a doughnut from Butterwick, they say let’s get a Butterwick. That was just incredible, that was what drove us to get to where we are now.”

Entrance to Butterwick Bakery

Tips for starting your own bakery business

We asked our co-founders what advice they would give someone starting their own bakery business, and Ryan said:

“Find your niche and perfect it. Be passionate about what you do, be legal and compliant at all times, and continually check this as you grow. Insurance is a big part of that.”

When it comes to protecting their business, Butterwick shared their experience of choosing Simply Business for their business insurance:

“Simply Business was the easiest one to find. We put in an enquiry on their website, they give you a call straight back, and they go through all the details of your business to make sure you have adequate insurance for what you do. That was it, a few minutes later, job done.”

For more tips, check out our 10-step guide to starting a baking business.

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Building a brand

On what’s next for Butterwick Bakery, it’s clear the baking duo have big goals to develop their brand. Ryan said:

“We love what we do. The big dream for me is to take the bakery brand that we have created and roll it out, we want to have a recognisable brand, we want everybody to know what Butterwick is, what it stands for and what you can get when you go there.”

Watch Butterwick’s story:

Have you started your own cake or home baking business recently? Let us know your experience in the comments.

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As one of the UK's biggest business insurance providers, we specialise in public liability insurance and protect more trades than anybody else. Why not take a look now and build a quick, tailored home baking insurance policy?

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We create this content for general information purposes and it should not be taken as advice. Always take professional advice. Read our full disclaimer

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