Start an online baking business to reach a variety of customers. Offer traditional baked goods such as breads, cakes, cookies and pastries or specialty items such as birthday cakes, gluten-free or sugar-free products. Running an online baking business provides convenience along with quality baked goods to customers who lack the time or talent to prepare delicious dessert and snack food items.
Register your business with the secretary of state’s office to form a corporation, partnership or limited liability company. Contact the county clerk’s office to register your business as a sole proprietorship. Apply for an Employer Identification Number (EIN) through the Internal Revenue Service to use on banking, tax and other business documents.
Contact your state’s health department to apply for a food manufacturer or distributor’s license to make and sell baked goods. For example, in Texas, you must apply for a food manufacturer’s license through the Texas Department of State Health Services if preparing and selling baked goods. Contact local health departments that oversee your city or county to inquire about additional licenses needed to prepare and sell baked goods. For example, in the city of Houston, you need to apply for a food dealer’s permit.
Visit the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) website to determine labels requirements for baked goods. You may need to create a label that includes ingredients and nutritional information.
Register a domain name, also known as a Web address, that is the same or similar to your business name. Visit domain registration websites such as Network Solutions or Whois.net to find available domain names. Find a Web hosting company that provides Web space, unlimited Web pages and the ability to upload files and shopping carts.
Design your website. Include photos of baked goods along with a description, pricing and shipping information. Include contact information and a return policy. Add recipes, baking ideas and strategies, customer reviews and helpful hints to attract more customers.
Market your business online by creating a Facebook fan page and YouTube instructional baking videos. Join online cooking and baking forums and post helpful comments to persuade people to visit your website. Stay in contact with customers using social media platforms such as Twitter. Ask customers to provide their email addresses to receive free online newsletters or updates about your baked goods business. Send online coupons for discounted or free items to encourage customers to tell others about your business.