Best Practices for Pricing

Best practices for pricing your freelance work is just one of the highlights from CFC 2012, the conference for freelancers held last week in Boston. (Save the dates for next year in San Francisco: June 22-24, 2013.)

Marcia Hoeck posted an excellent recap of almost every CFC session on her blog, My Breakthrough Business, including these key points from one of the favorite speakers, Sarah Durham of Big Duck, on The Nuts and Bolts of Pricing and Negotiating.

Sarah “went through a very smart step-by-step tutorial of how to price your services and negotiate with clients, and I felt like I was back at a monthly staff meeting at my former marketing communications firm, reviewing our profitability. The only way to truly know this stuff is to work with it up to your elbows, and it’s evident Sarah has been pulling her weight in the trenches and is hell-bent on working her business. Some high points:

  • She doesn’t guess when estimating, she bases estimates on time tracking — and tracks every fraction of billable and unbillable time
  • She advocates paying yourself a salary, even if you’re only a company of one
  • She requires, and gets, 50% up front. Did you get that? Half. Up front.
  • She is very transparent with her pricing and is considering publishing price ranges on her website, a la Newfangled’s pricing guide
  • She has Standard and Packaged pricing models to streamline the pricing process
  • Clients are qualified with a canned auto response system before time is spent with them

If you were there and have something to add, please do!

Read the rest here: