If you’re new to the gig economy, there’s so much to work out as you get started in your freelancing career. For instance, how do you know what to charge for your service? Is there an industry-standard rate for freelancers in your niche? To help you work out your fees as a freelancer, we’ve put together seven top tips on how to charge for your gig that will help you ensure your prices are appropriate for the service that you’re offering to your clients.
1 – Conduct Some Market Research
Working out what to charge as a freelancer is one of the toughest parts of joining the gig economy. After all, you want to offer good value without being too cheap. And one of the best ways of deciding on your rates is to find out what your competitors charge. Here are some market research tips that will help you charge appropriately for your gig:
- Check out other freelancer profiles on RadialHub within your niche, and use their pricing structure as a template.
- Review job boards on LinkedIn and other recruitment platforms and look at what companies are willing to pay for your freelance role.
- Read blog posts and watch YouTube videos from freelancers within your niche who talk openly about what they charge their clients.
- Don’t be afraid to reach out to other gigsters and ask them for advice – you will find that most are friendly and approachable!
Once you’ve conducted some market research and have a flavour of what to charge, it’s time to consider the minimum amount you will work for, as we introduce below.
2 – Work Out Your Minimum Hourly Rate
While it’s important to get an idea of what you can charge for your freelance services, it shouldn’t be your only consideration. It’s equally as important to ascertain what your minimum hourly rate needs to be. Here are some tips on how to work it out:
- Calculate all of your expenses and work out what you need to earn on a monthly basis.
- Then, decide on how many hours each day you’re willing to work to earn the money that you need to live on.
- Factor in other costs associated with running your gig and ensure they’re included in your rate.
- Check your rate against your market research to ensure it’s realistic, and run with it as your minimum when quoting for gigs.
You will find that you don’t have a set price as a freelancer, and it’s more about developing an income scale. But understanding your minimum hourly rate is crucial – be it $20, $40, or $100 – as it provides you with an important foundation from which to work.
3 – Offer Bulk Order Discounts
You will learn that your success in the gig economy is largely dependent on repeat custom. If you can deliver a quality service to the same clients time and time again, you will forge a successful freelance career for yourself.
And an excellent way of attracting long-term clients is by offering a discount for bulk or regular orders. Once you’ve worked out your minimum hourly rate, consider a way of reaching out and offering a discount to your clients.
This could be a percentage saving per project or perhaps a saving that you can offer per hour. However you do it, offering bulk order discounts is an excellent way of bolstering your client base.
4 – Factor in Chargeable Extras
Another thing that you need to consider when pricing your gig is how you will charge for any extras that aren’t included in your basic service offer. For instance, a freelance writer might offer a 1000-word package to their clients as standard, but then attach chargeable extras including:
- Keyword research
- Additional words
- Hyperlinks included within the text
- Expedited delivery
Ultimately, there are so many ways you can add extras to your gig, and doing so will ensure that your client doesn’t expect the world from you from a basic gig.
5 – Ask Your Client What Their Budget is
This is a trick that works well for lots of freelancers. If you’re struggling to decide how much your work is worth, letting the client lead on costings is a smart move. While you might be new to the industry, your client is likely to have worked with freelancers before.
It’s a good idea to let your client reveal what their budget is before you get to work on their project. Once they’ve shared the information with you, you can then use it as a guide to structuring the price of your gig.
But doing this comes with a caveat – some clients have unrealistic expectations and expect you to deliver the world for five bucks. Understanding your client’s budget should just be one of the ways that you work out your pricing, not the only one!
6 – Offer Expedited Delivery for a Fee
If you typically offer a seven-day turnaround time on your projects, consider slicing it in half and offering expedited delivery for a fee. Expedited delivery is a great way to increase the rate that you charge for your gigs, but you need to make sure you can deliver in the timeframes that you offer.
It’s probably best to avoid tight timeframes like next-day delivery, as so many things could potentially impact your ability to deliver in such a short space of time.
But ultimately, if you’re smart with your time management and are realistic with your workload, you can include expedited delivery on your gig as an optional extra.
7 – Periodically Review Your Rates
The last point is an important one – you need to regularly review your freelancer rates and consider whether you need to increase or decrease your prices. The gig economy is constantly changing, so you need to review your pricing structure and ensure it’s current.
Your clients will understand that you need to increase your prices once in a while, but don’t get into the habit of doing it every month! You are likely to upset people and lose work if you consistently hike your prices for no apparent reason.
Charging the right price for your services as a freelancer isn’t easy, but it’s super important to put together some sort of pricing structure. Charging for each project ad hoc is unsustainable and is likely to cause you stress in the long run. Hopefully, these seven tips will help you charge a fair and sustainable rate for your gig and help you earn the money that you deserve.