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Telling your clients you want to raise your prices is never an easy task.

Freelancers often feel like they need to have a reason to explain a price increase. Half the battle is talking yourself into the fact that you need to charge more. It’s easy to brush off a price hike when you’re still able to pay the bills.

But ask yourself this; do you think you’re making the same as you would if you were a full-time employee? If not, it’s time to reconsider your rates.

Stop trying to be friends with your clients and start thinking of number one. You might lost clients with a price rise, but there will be new clients who can afford you, so don’t give up if you fall at the first hurdle.

Here are some of the ways you can up your rates without raising too many eyebrows.

Be specific with your services

Specialists can afford to charge more.

This is one of the unfortunate truths that the ‘general’ freelancers have to face, because if you have a niche that you hold authority in, people will almost always pay whatever you want them to.

If you only provide general services, clients will easily be able to head somewhere else when your prices get too high. However if you’re a specialist, clients will struggle to find your level of expertise without serious hunting, and so they’ll be more likely to accept your price hike.

Have a think about specialist subjects you have knowledge of that could help you out with your freelance work. You can always take an intensive short-course to gain in-depth knowledge in a shorter space of time.

Have a strategy

Waking up and wishing you could raise your prices simply isn’t enough to motivate yourself to do it, as it’s easy to talk yourself out of raising our prices for fear of losing current clients.

Having a strategy for raising your fees will prompt you to put prices up without having to question your worth, or fear the reaction from clients.

For example, if your raise your rates by X amount after you’ve gained Y amount of clients, you’re taking into account the amount of time you spend on each project. By having a set formula for raising your prices, you’ll be more determined to actually put the up, and will be more likely to carry it out.

Change how you charge

Changing your rates based on the how you charge with is a tactic as old as time for making clients think they’re still getting a great deal.

Large brands often use it to make customers think they’re paying less, and to undercut the competition.

Instead of charging £6.25 an hour, try charging £250 a week. If you’re working full-time hours for a week, then this won’t seem like much more than your hourly rate.

Let clients choose what they pay

Trust me, this doesn’t have to be quite as risky as it sounds.

Pricing through a tier system has proved to be an effective way of charging for many freelancers, and can also be useful if you’re looking for feedback from your clients.

Offer three prices and ask your clients which they feel comfortable paying based on the work you have completed. If you’re not confident to charge what you wish you could, you can at least be sure that you’ll always get paid the minimum you can afford to live on.

Are you thinking of changing your freelance rates? Leave us a comment in the section below on how you plan to make the change.

About The Author

Karl Bilby

We work very closely with our expert accountants to bring you the latest factually correct tax and accounting news. We also enjoy writing about small business news that we hope you find useful!

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