Once you start running your own freelance or service business, it is a good idea to learn more about what is termed psychological pricing in order to attract the right type of clients. You might be tempted to start off low just to get some business, but this might backfire in terms of you getting nothing but “bargain basement clients”.
It might also mean you get quite a few regular clients, but you end up locked into a low price for your services and will have a hard time justifying an increase.
Knowing What You and Your Time Are Worth
Pricing is the core element of any business. There are numerous techniques to set prices, but your starting point should be what your time and expertise are worth. You don’t want to sell your services too cheaply because you might be seen as inferior to other vendors. If you are going to price yourself higher, then you need to show a clear reason why you are worth the money. This can help you build brand, and brand loyalty.
Your final price should include all total costs involved in doing the work. Keep a time sheet and all receipts involved in each project.
The Rule of 7 or 9
Prices with 7s or 9s in them are usually more attractive than those with other numbers, so try to work them into your rate card.
You will probably offer a range of services. Consider bundling for a slightly lower price, but higher perceived value. This can bring up the amount each customer spends as well.
In some cases, you might consider offering particular services for one monthly fee. For example, if you are uploading content to a WordPress site every day, it might not make sense to charge by the hour, but rather through a package deal that sets the terms of the work up front.
You can also offer tiered packages. The silver would be basic services, and then you would add-on as you create ever more exclusive packages full of features. Just keep in mind how much you charge for each individually and what sorts of limits you can set for the packages.
You need to set limits for the packages because your business will only thrive if you have repeat customers rehiring you regularly.
Some service providers offer additional value to their customers in the form of a special website, portal or membership site with useful information. It is a good place to upload contracts, descriptions of your services and other items they will need to know when working with you. You can also offer original content, niche-related information and news, and so on.
Other useful items include templates, cheat sheets, planners, frequently asked questions (FAQs) and similar items that do not cost a lot or take a lot of time to create, but which can set you apart from the competition and keep top clients eager to come back for more.
If you are struggling to get customers, carefully analyze what others providing the same service are offering, then try to go at least one better. You can be sure the skills are in demand and you are marketing yourself as at least equal to if not better than your competition.