This Foolproof Fix Will Save You Time, Energy, and Make You More Money
This question gets asked a lot. And while it’s been pondered by entrepreneurs and freelancers from a wide range of industries and backgrounds, the behind-the-scenes thought process is usually linked to an underlying fear: what if they see my prices and then don’t want to work with me?
If the work you’re doing is great work. And you’re showcasing it well. And the price you’ve set is reflective of the quality and value you’re delivering for your clients…then if they see your price and don’t want to work with you, that’s a reflection of their value-determinations and decision-making process…not a reflection of your worth.
Beyond the mindset of sharing your pricing, when I’m asked this question, with rare exception my answer is Yes.
Yes, you should be sharing your price up front. Here’s why:
1) You’re losing out on sales by not showing your price
Have you ever walked through a boutique, fallen in love with a jacket, or dress, or pair of shoes, and then not been able to find the price? Covertly checking each sleeve, the inside tags, flipping things over…and nothing. Even if a salesperson comes over to ask if you need help with anything, chances are the expression “If you have to ask, you can’t afford it” will run through your brain and you’ll wind up saying No Thanks, and leaving empty handed.
The same thing happens to potential clients who land on your site. They’ll fall in love with your writing, your photography portfolio or your jewelry – and then when they can’t find a price, they’ll leave. Even if you suggest that they contact you for more info…they’ll assume that something as wonderful as what you’re offering them can’t possibly be in their budget.
2) Turning off potential clients with your price actually saves you in the end
How much time do you spend responding to emails with questions about your pricing, and trying to figure out budgets with potential clients? How much energy do you exert either getting all excited for inquiries that don’t materialize?
Sharing your price on your website lets potential clients self-select. If your entry package is priced at $5,000 and they know they have a budget of $1000 - they’ll keep on browsing. They won’t email you, or sign up for a consult, or fill out an application form. And that’s ok. It’s more than ok – it’s excellent. You can use the time you’ll save in fielding those requests for information on creating your next great package, or working with a new client.
3) Being up-front with pricing let’s you start the discussion
In negotiation-speak, showing potential clients a price upfront lets you ‘anchor’ the discussion by setting the starting point for any negotiations. By sharing the price on your site, you’ve instantly educated potential clients on the value of your product or service and that will help them both make a decision about if you’re the right fit for them (see #2 above) and come up with a reasonable starting point in their negotiations with you.
In the example above, if your entry package is priced at $5000, and a client has a budget that’s pretty close to that – they’ll contact you. When they ask about flexibility in that price, chances are the counteroffer they make won’t be $1500…it’ll be much closer to your original asking price. As a professional, you can decide whether or not you have flexibility in your pricing, but this way, the discussion should be far more realistic and shorter than if their new suggested price was coming out of left-field.
Though the pursuit of prestige or mystique by not listing prices openly on a website may work for some, ultimately, these three benefits: client attraction, self-selection, and anchoring the discussion make it worthwhile to include pricing on your site.
If sharing your required investment levels up-front still makes you feel nervous, or if you’re not sure how to set pricing levels for a service or product that’s customized for each client, try using the format “prices starting from $ XX”. This allows you to set expectations on the ballpark investment required, but still gives you wiggle room to change that price when the specific details of a client’s requirements become clear.