As a freelance designer, you're likely to have a difficult time trying to set great rates. The rates should be good enough to make you feel nice about working for your client. Nevertheless, the rates should also not be too high to make the client leave and move to another freelance designer. Therefore, this article seeks to show you how to set freelance design rates. Before setting the rates, you should first know how much time the project would take to finish. Next, you should evaluate the complexity/simplicity of the project too.
So, how do you set favorable freelance design rates?
Charging Per Hour vs. Charging Per Project
Plenty of debate has gone on to determine whether hourly rates are better than charging for each project. Charging per project is not popular with many designers because of the likelihood of things changing. More importantly, things might get out of hand thus forcing you to work more than you expected. Charging per hour is a safe and secure option, as it guarantees that you will receive payment for any work you have done. Per project rates don't offer similar guarantees. However, choose the option you think will work well for you.
Pay Attention to the Agreement
The agreement or contract you sign with the client indicates everything you're expected to do. Know the client's expectations before signing the contract or setting freelance design rates. Check that the client knows what he's about to pay for before setting the rates. Even if you don't have a contract in place, ask the client to send an email stating the terms of the work he expects you to do. The email should include the client's acceptance or approval of your rates and work. The client must be clear in the emails, though you should ask for clarifications where necessary.
Charge According to Nature of Work
What this means is that you should charge rates that reflect the nature of the work the client presents to you. You can't charge the same for all jobs. In some jobs, your rates will be lower. Some jobs will call for higher rates. Therefore, spend some time going through the specifics of each job first before deciding what to charge. Ask the client to explain what the project is all about clearly before giving you time to prepare the rates/quote. Some projects are not too time-consuming and don't require too much effort, thus worth charging low rates.
Don't be Afraid to Ask for More
You will find those who encourage you to charge your bigger clients more for each freelance design job that you do for them. Others might tell you to have a flat rate that you charge every client irrespective of the size of his organization. Depending on the side you listen to, you might feel compelled to leave the rates as they are because you don't want to appear to be taking advantage of your clients. However, it's worth noting that some clients will move elsewhere if they see you charging low rates. Such clients associate low rates with poor quality.
Don't forget that you're a businessperson
It's easy to forget that you're in business. The goal of each person who is in business is to make money while providing a service. Therefore, the freelance design rates you charge should be enough to sustain you in business. If you charge too low, you will attract low-paying or non-paying clients, which could have a disastrous effect on your business. Charge a rate that sustains you. Charge a rate that allows your design business to continue operating and offering excellent services to clients. Approach each negotiation for rates with the mind of an entrepreneur.
Therefore, setting freelance design rates is neither a walk in the park nor an impossible task.