Hello fellow designers! Today we are going to discuss a much debated topic in the world of web design. Should we put pricing on our websites? I often get questions that sound like “Someone told me it’s a must but someone else told me that’s a horrible idea…SOS..I have no idea what to do?!” I’m going to weigh the pro’s and con’s of having your pricing visible on a website and I will give you my own two cents on this topic.
Pro/Con – Client Selection
Well, it does help weed out clients, that’s for one. We have to come to terms with the notion that not every potential client will become a client of ours, and that is okay. With pricing being available on your offered services, customers are able to gauge their own price ranges and see if you are a match for what they are looking for. Otherwise, you would be scheduling a consultation, speaking for an hour, writing up a proposal, all to find out that that your pricing is not in their budget. It’s a good to way to not waste both your time or the other person’s time. However, if you choose to not show any pricing and instead ask for potential clients to contact you for further information, you could lose potential clients who don’t want to go the extra mile and e-mail you and they may decide to keep browsing through other designers’ websites.
You can always put a price range or a starting point. Although, honestly, you have to gauge your clientele. What field are you targeting with your designs? If you don’t have any set clientele yet, then you can try both ways. Make notes on your first five consultations and see how it goes when you reach the proposal portion with pricing. Are you seeing that there is a general trend and pricing is similar? Or are you completely customizing each potential client’s requests?
As for myself, I have decided to show pricing on my website. I have chosen this because I myself as a consumer prefer to see pricing. I see myself clicking off many times when no price or price range is shown. As well, as a designer, I have noticed that my clientele really prefers everything to be visual and presented in an organized fashion. So, to save both myself and a potential client time, I have created different packages I offer. This way, I myself know my pricing, and what is included in each package. When I am working on a project, I can go down the list and check everything off while presenting the client with what they can expect to be delivered accordingly. It’s an easy way to stay on track and for myself, stay organized and professional. As well, I have included different add-on services to the packages I offer. So in the case that I do have to personalize the design request, I can always attach that and it will be very clear what is what.
Pro/Con – Communication & Organization
I have grouped these two together because I believe they go hand in hand. As a designer, your communication skills and organization both in your mind in your workplace need to be on-point.You don’t want to be all over the place when presenting anything, especially not a potential design. This goes both for online when you are sending updates and emails, on the phone when consulting with a client, and in person if you are meeting with clients to present the final product. Communication has a great deal to do with your pricing. How? If you do choose to display pricing on your website, you must be detailed with what is included in said price. If a client signs up for your website design package priced at $500 and the final product comes out to a price of $1,500…you will find yourself in a very unpleasant situation. The client will not be happy, you will be frustrated, and this will not look good. Do not do this.
If you choose to put pricing, lay everything out detail by detail. Are you including hosting? Are you going to help with the set-up? Will you help them set-up an business email account? How many revisions are included? You must note everything otherwise you will find yourself in a very unpleasant situation. On the other side of the coin, if you choose not to show pricing, then you have the ability to customize the services and price points on the proposal which is a great. There will not be any “But your website displays something different” statements. So, this will really depend on your organization skills and your managing style.
Because I prefer to have everything organized for both myself and my clients, adding pricing to my website helps me communicate better in my proposals. I tend to get flustered and can forget to include something in the initial pricing cost and then only remember much later, and I personally don’t like that. Having the pricing charts with descriptions allows me to go through each bullet point and check off each category as I write up quotes or while I work through a project. If you really are feeling that you should not include pricing, then I would suggest to at-least create the different packages or services you offer and keep them somewhere accessible for yourself. This way, whenever you hop on a consultation call or are writing up a proposal, you have that information close by to refer to, ensuring you don’t miss any important details.
Pro/Con – Pricing
I think we can all agree that as designers, we tend to start off working for any price we can lock a client in for because we don’t have any experience in the industry. For my seasoned designers, I’m sure you can recall a moment where you did a project for $200 and realized while working that you are way under-charging….and my for new designers, take notes. If you are new to the industry, any practice is good practice, but remember that you cannot work for free forever. You will see that your skills are starting to grow and that will be the time to start boosting price. So, that being said, sometimes it can be a bad idea to put pricing on the website BECAUSE of the changing prices. I say this only because if past clients return for more work or someone is referred to you, the new update in pricing could cause confusion to some. As a designer, I totally understand it, but your clients are not designers, so they won’t be looking at it from the same viewpoint you are.
As well, the prices are often adjusted depending who we are working with. For instance, you probably won’t be charging a big company the same you would charge a family friend. There will be exceptions. So, you must keep that in mind when listing your prices.
If you do decide to list prices, I highly recommend you stay as detailed as possible, outline everything included in the packages/services you offer. As well, know your worth and price yourself accordingly! Do a self check-in every 6 months and decide whether it is time to raise your prices based on the skills you gained in those months. As well, know that it is okay to ask for more (but be reasonable) if you are working on a huge project because every project will in fact require varying amounts of work. However, be sure everything is well-communicated and explain in detail what the work entails prior to the start of the project.
I have increased my prices over the years and I have not received any questions as to my change in pricing. However, if I was in that situation, I would mention that I have not updated my prices in X amount of years, and as I have become busier with project, my skills have increased and my demands for work have also grew, demanding a change in price. As well, if I am working with a family friend or anyone I offer discounts and tailored services to, I just simply make sure to mention what I am offering. I do this incase they refer my services to others, they will know my standard rates.
I hope these tips helped you! I suggest making a list using these pros and cons to decide which option is best for you! Just remember, it’s always best to be honest, transparent, have good communication, and stay organized both mentally and in your workspace. This will save you many moments of frustration and confusion. Additionally, remember to be confident in your work! You’ve got this! If you have any questions at all or if you need help putting together a service list for your business, please feel free to contact me here. As well, I’m curious as to what you do in your business? Do you provide pricing on your website? Do you speak about pricing during your consultation or do you prefer to leave pricing solely for the proposal after consulting? Please leave a comment below! I’d like to hear your thoughts on this topic.
Until next time,