Best Tips on How to Negotiate Your Rates for Freelance Designers

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When you work as a Freelance Designer, and many of us do in this business, you will always be faced with negotiating your rates. Whether it’s your first gig or your 100th, you must have discussions with clients and 3rd party associates regarding your payments and the cost of doing business with you. In this blog, we highlight some tips to help you during the negotiation phase that will help you land more work and get paid what you’re worth.

There will be times when you first start your career that you will feel overwhelmed due to negotiating. Don’t feel alone as many people aren’t satisfied with this part of their jobs. However, learning to master this skill will not only get your foot in the door, but it will also help you get paid reasonably. No matter how uncomfortable you may be when it comes to the money, it has to be done. You’re in business to make a living and not give away the house. Take these tips to help you become more comfortable when it comes to getting paid.

  1. Research going Rates for Similar Jobs
  2. Create a price sheet
  3. Don’t be afraid to say “NO” or walk away
  4. Build value not price
  5. Seasoned Vets versus beginners

Often people aren’t aware of what to charge someone when it comes to creative services. Be sure to do your homework and see what the competition is charging for similar jobs or projects. Don’t over price, but don’t underprice either. Stay somewhere in the middle, and you should be signing contracts in no time.

Creating a price sheet can save a lot of time and work. However, be aware these aren’t prices set in stone. Let your clients know, these are average prices but since each project is custom made, the price could change. Reassure them you will put everything in writing and show details.

Next, don’t be afraid to say no to your prospect and be willing to walk away if the task is unreasonable. Consider the scope of work, what the industry trends are for fees and the amount of time it will take you to complete the job. Time is valuable, and it’s important always to take that into consideration. Depending on how long you will work on the job, determines how much you should be getting paid. Break down their offer by the hour and then see how much you’re making. If you’re less than minimum wage, then consider if the job is worthwhile.

Build value, not price when it comes to your work. Even if you’ve just completed your degree and are just starting out, doesn’t mean you’re underqualified. Show them what’s involved and how you will help them solve a problem, don’t talk price until you’ve gotten them to fall in love with your work and you! Remember, not to under price your projects. You could lose a deal by not charging enough. People aren’t always looking for a cheap deal. Most times people are willing to pay for quality.

Lastly, seasoned veterans will and should charge more for their work. You aren’t an amateur forever, and price should be dictated based on your experience and skills. If people aren’t willing to pay you for your knowledge, then it may be time to look for a higher paying client.

These tips should help ease some of the stress that is often involved in negotiating. You are valuable, and your work is necessary to them for whatever the client is doing. Give them an excellent job, at a reasonable price and watch your customers grow as well as your bank account!


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