Cookie booths increase public awareness of Girl Scouts, and are a fun and effective way to participate in the Cookie Program. Cookie booths can be held February 16-March 24 this season. Check out the booth options available in this guide to get started on your booth adventures. Whatever type of booth your troop participates in, remember:
All cookie booths must be approved by Girl Scouts River Valleys, except those held at a private residence, such as a Lemonades Stand.
Using Digital Cookie to process credit card payments is a quick way for customers to pay for their cookie booth purchases. Girl Scouts River Valleys will cover the fees for troop credit card transactions using Digital Cookie. Girl Scouts/troops can do this using Digital Cookie on a mobile device.
How it works: First, the Troop/Girl Scout’s Digital Cookie website must be set up and approved on a web browser. After that step is complete, download the app. The same email and password used to access Digital Cookie is the same to login to the mobile app. View the complete instructions on the Digital Cookie Mobile App Tip Sheet on Cookie Central.
Once a user is logged in, they can see Girl Scout or Troop view. The Troop view is used to take sales on behalf of the troop at a booth. Use the Scan Card feature instead of typing all the details. Enter the required information, including the customer’s email address. Once the order is successful, an order confirmation screen will appear. Credit card orders will be visible under the “All Orders” section in the app or in Smart Cookies under the View Booth Credit Card payments tab.
Getting Ready for Your Booth
Here’s a handy checklist to make sure your troop is ready for an in-person cookie booth:
Review the booth notes in Smart Cookies for any special instructions for the location.
Use the sales per hour information available in Smart Cookies to help you determine how much inventory the troop will need for the booth.
Pack your supplies: Cookies (of course), a booth tally sheet, payments accepted flier, posters, a cash bag and change, pens, calculators, a table and chairs (if needed), and your smart phone for taking credit card payments. Want to be extra? A tablecloth, marketing display, plastic tubs to store cookies, and grocery bags are just a few additional items to have on hand.
Remind Girl Scouts to dress for the weather, in case the cookie booth is located outside.
During and After Your Booth
Remember to bring your Girl Scout spirit! This means respecting the people and space around you while having a friendly and positive energy and, most of all, having FUN! Cookie booths are opportunities that come with important responsibilities. Be sure all attendees understand the expectations to be considerate, caring, friendly, and helpful. It’s the Girl Scout Law after all!
Track your sales using the tally sheet, and later enter them into Smart Cookies using the Smart Booth Divider when you get home.
Quick tip: Be sure to count your cookie inventory and your cash/change before opening your booth, and then again at the end to make certain it all adds up!
Booth Types & Participation Options
Girl Scouts of the U.S.A. Cookie Finder Direct Ship Troop Sales
All troops that set up their troop site in Digital Cookie will automatically be added to the GSUSA Cookie Finder, which helps customers find nearby cookie booths. Customers use the Find Cookies feature available on the River Valleys website or at www.GirlScouts.org. Customers using the Cookie Finder will see a list of local troops and can purchase directly from these troops for direct ship and/or cookie donations. Your only step at the end of the sale is to transfer these sales to participating girls. Find details in The Cookie Press and on Cookie Central.
Hybrid Cookie Booths for Pre-Paid Pickup of Delivery
Note: Very few River Valleys Troops use this option to participate in booth sales. Troops can utilize the Troop Virtual Booths links in Digital Cookie to allow customers the ability to make pre-paid sales online for in-person delivery or to pick up at an existing booth location. Orders must be reviewed and approved in the troop’s Digital Cookie site within five days of the order. Review the Troop Pickup Orders/ Virtual Booth Tip Sheets and videos in the Digital Cookie Guide on Cookie Central.
In-Person Cookie Booths
Council-Secured booths are arranged by Girl Scouts River Valleys staff with our corporate and community partners. The sign-up process for these booths is in two phases: Lottery and First-come, First-served (FCFS). A calendar of sign-up dates and times will be published on Cookie Central and in the Cookie Press.
Troop-Secured booths are arranged by troops at local businesses or community centers/events that don’t have an existing partnership with Girl Scouts River Valleys. Having your troop contact local businesses is an awesome way for Girl Scouts to learn business strategy and people skills.
Lemonade Stands are booth sales on a person’s property. Girls can gather together in pairs or more and sell right from their yard! The troop can enter this as a troop secured booth to use Digital Cookie to process credit card payments, and enter sales in the Smart Booth Divider to distribute credit to the Girl Scouts that worked at the booth.
Check out the Smart Cookies and Digital Cookie Guides on Cookie Central to review the steps for scheduling council-secured booths, entering lottery choices, and entering troop-secured booths.
No Matter Which Booth(s) You Participate in…
Make it a Learning Opportunity
Cookie booths are a great opportunity for girls to see what it’s like to run a small business. Assigning roles like greeter, order packer, change-maker, etc. and swtiching them often can help the girls stay engaged, learn new skills, and grow confidence! Keep in mind, roles can always be adjusted depending on girls interests. Remember to feature important information like your troop number, your troop’s chosen donation recipient, your sales goal, and creative signage to draw customers in.
Enter Sales Into Smart Cookies
Since cookies sold at booths come from troop inventory, Girl Scouts aren’t financially responsible for them. You’ll find the Smart Booth Divider instructions in the Smart Cookies Guide on Cookie Central to learn how to allocate cookie sales for booth participants.
It’s Time to Celebrate!
Hooray you did it! Give yourself a pat on the back for completing a booth and getting another step closer to reaching those cookie goals!
Summary of Resources
Cookie Booth Policy – Read the Girl Scouts River Valleys Cookie Booth Policy before planning your cookie booth sale.
ABCSmartCookies.com – Use Smart Cookies online to sign up for a council-arranged booth, request a troop-arranged booth, report booth sales with the booth divider, and so much more. Sellers and volunteers are able to use their online account starting November/December.
Smart Cookies Guide – Use these step-by-step tutorials to guide you through signing up for a council-arranged booth, requesting a troop-arranged booth, reporting booth sales with the booth divider, and so much more.
Mid-Season Sales Data – Check sales at your booth location for an estimate of how many cookies to bring. These sales are self-reported and are not a guarantee of sales.
Cookie Booth Locations-Do Not Contact List (PDF) – Includes all potential council-secured cookie booth locations. Please review this list prior to securing your own troop cookie booths to ensure that you don’t call a location that is already council arranged. Finalized council-secured cookie booth locations are listed in Smart Cookies.