When you think of pricing your freelance services, do you get knots in your stomach and want to throw your arms up in exasperation? You’re not alone.
I’ve been freelancing full-time for 15 years, and pricing has always been a stress point, especially getting started. There was some guilt that I might be overcharging, yet ultimately, I needed to make enough to cover my time and support my family.
One of the things I had to learn as a freelancer, was how to find a freelance rate “sweet spot” where I was able to charge in a way that I’m being fairly compensated, and yet my clients are getting the solutions they deserve. If you struggle because you can’t seem to get a price that’s worth your expertise, then here are 3 proven strategies that are guaranteed to help you charge more.
Watch the video or read on to find out three critical things to remember when it comes to setting your freelance rates.
Know Your Value When Pricing Your Freelance Services
Let me go back a few years (*ahem) to when I was a high school student and I got my first paying freelance job. I wasn’t calling myself a freelancer, but someone who knew I had illustration skills asked me to create a drawing for their project. I had no idea what I was doing, but I was thrilled to be getting paid to do what I loved. I received $50 for the project, which seemed like a win for my teenage self back in the 90s.
I didn’t set the price, they just paid me for it, but the process showed me something very important: People who have a real need will pay to have that business need met or that problem solved.
Often we freelancers see our own value as our natural abilities like writing, drawing, building websites, etc. because those are things we know how to do really well. But really, we need to understand it from a different perspective. We need to understand from the client’s perspective that they are paying for the solution to their problem. As I tell my Ignite Membership students, when you approach your value by the problems you solve, your value increases.
Whatever your client is asking you to do, the desired outcome is going to be tied to money. They need what you provide because they want more sales, more clients, a better image….and all that means more PROFIT.
Being able to communicate this value to your clients is key to getting paid your worth. When clients find a provider that can give them a solution they need, they will pay for it, and pay well for it.
Your value doesn’t come from your skillset – it comes from the problems you solve for your customers.
Find the Right Clients
Your service is only worth what someone is willing to pay for it. But some businesses are more willing than others.
When I was young and developing my business in my very small town, I saw all the small businesses in my area as potential clients, and I knew all the owners – many of whom were my friends! Surely, I thought, they would all need websites, logos, etc.
In reality, these businesses weren’t looking to grow beyond our town. They were happy to serve our area and didn’t really have a need to develop a website or marketing collateral. So it was going to be difficult for me to try to sell a branding package or a website.
In short, I was trying to solve a problem which, for these folks, didn’t exist!
Instead, I started to look beyond my town for businesses that were a little bigger, ones looking to increase their reach outside of a small geographic area. These businesses have a different perspective, more at stake, and more income to invest. Their problems were bigger. They weren’t just trying to market locally, their sights were bigger – regional or even global.
Whether I solve the problem for the big business or the small business really doesn’t make a difference – the workflow is essentially the same – except for the budget! So now, I’m very careful with whom I choose to work.
This means that as a freelancer I had to learn how to say “no”.
Of course, it’s your prerogative to choose who you serve and what you charge. I would be lying if I said I hadn’t helped some clients that didn’t have the budget, but I’m not necessarily all about making money. In the end, you have to charge what feels good to you.
But remember, just because you CAN do a job, doesn’t mean it’s a good fit. Clients don’t always value what you bring to the table, and they might not be ready or willing to invest what they need to really get the results you can provide. Saying no is sometimes the best answer for everyone.
Pro Tip for Finding the Right Freelance Clients
Clients willing to make the investment for you to solve their problem are typically easier to work with. They often have fewer issues, they tend to complain less, and overall the process goes much smoother! Because they are ready to spend the money to get their problem solved rather than nickel and dining things tend to go much smoother.
Earn a Reputation for Great Service
When you earn a reputation of excellent service with your clients, they will value you as a trusted partner and it will be easy for both of you to continue that relationship. Just as it takes more effort to find a new client, it also takes more effort for the client to find another contractor!
The only thing you have to do with an existing client is to take care of their needs, and with the trust you earn do that, the money will follow. You’ll be able to charge these clients what you are worth and save yourself the time of finding new clients. You’ll also be building a solid foundation for your business that, through your trusted clients who value you as a partner, can continue to pay you month after month and year after year.
If you found this article helpful for pricing your freelance services, I invite you to check out my free resource – my Freelance Business Blueprint where I walk you step by step through the strategies I have used to build a profitable website business. Go to www.freelanceceo.com/blueprint to grab it now!