Aside from figuring out what to put on our websites, two of the first things all designers think about when they’re just starting their business is: what exactly am I going to offer and what the heck do I charge for those things.
Figuring out how to package and price your services can be difficult whether you’re just getting started or are trying to audit your offerings so that you can stand out more from the market.
So, in today’s post I wanted to share with you a few things to think about when you’re working on your design services and prices so you can get to work on doing what you really want to do: design!
How to package your design services
Creating packages of your services is the first step you want to take, and it’s a lot easier than trying to figure out what to charge. The types of packages you offer your design clients really depends on what services you offer and how much you’re comfortable doing for your clients. However, there are two main ways most designers package up their services, so let’s dig into those!
This is the way I package my services, and it seems to be the most popular way to offer branding and website design services to clients. An all-inclusive package would give your client everything she needs on her branding or her website. For example, if you were offering all-inclusive branding services, then you’d obviously create a logo, but you’d take it a step further and likely include business cards, blog post graphic templates, or another brand collateral item.
A lot of designers like offering all-inclusive design services for a few reasons:
- Our clients don’t have to look for different people to complete different pieces, saving them stress
- It gives us the chance to create the entire brand or the entire website
- Premium, all-inclusive packages typically cost more, which means we’re making more money
Build your own package
The alternative to the all-inclusive design services is a more a la carte approach. This build your own package way of working with your clients is great especially if you offer monthly design work or have someone interested in getting certain things (like business cards or a PDF template) after they worked with someone else on their branding.
If you want to let your clients build their own packages, then it’s important to make sure you clearly communicate on your website that you work that way and that they have the ability to do that. For example, if I were offering only a la carte services, I would list all of the a la carte items that I could create for my clients with a heading that explained they could get one item or several. Then, on my Contact or Inquiry form, I would include a checklist so potential clients can select what they want done.
[clickToTweet tweet=”All-inclusive or a la carte: how do you package your design services for your clients?” quote=”All-inclusive or a la carte: how do you package your design services for your clients?”]
Okay, so now that you have some ideas on how you can package up your design services for your clients, the question then becomes what to charge for them.
How to price your design services
Aside from “How do I find more clients?!” the question about how to figure out what to charge for your design services seems to be one of the most popular questions I see asked. I wish I could wave a magic wand and give us all the perfect answer to pricing that we need to help us book the right clients, but the truth is that it really depends on what you’re offering and who your target market is. However, there are a few things to consider when you’re trying to figure out what to charge.
Your experience in the field
The most important place to start when trying to figure out your pricing is by asking yourself how much experience you have. This is obviously more difficult for those who are just starting their design business, especially when you really want to be charging more. On the other hand, this also works for those of you who have been in the design business for a long time.
So, when you’re pricing your services based on your experience, here are a few things you can ask yourself:
- How much experience do you have compared to your competitors?
- How many similar projects have you done in the past?
- Do you have any unique skills that boost your experience level?
- Will you spend the entire project googling how to do stuff?
That last question may sound silly, but if you’re going to have to google how to do everything, then it’s obvious you don’t have much experience with that type of project so your pricing should be lower. As a whole, though, when you’re considering all of these things together, you are going to know how comfortable you are taking on the project based on how much experience you have.
Hourly rate vs. Flat rate
Another thing you should consider when you’re pricing your design services is if you want to bill your clients hourly or a flat rate. Most designers, myself included, go with flat rates for the majority of projects that we take on, and this is partially because clients are more comfortable with a flat rate. The exact number lets them know right away whether or not they can work with you whereas an hourly rate is more vague because you have to estimate how long the project would take.
However, there are a few situations where you may want to bill hourly instead. For example, if I have previous clients coming back to me wanting to make tweaks on their site, I’m much more likely to bill them hourly for it. I usually also bill hourly for that kind of work for new clients. These are projects I expect to take about 5 hours or less.
A lot of designers bill differently, though, so I encourage you to consider what you’re comfortable with and try it out for a while. Remember: you’re building a business that’s based on how you want to do things!
[clickToTweet tweet=”Focus on your expertise and what YOU want out of your business when packaging and pricing your services” quote=”Focus on your expertise and what YOU want out of your business when packaging and pricing your services”]
How did you package and price your services?
I know there are a lot of designers out there who already have their packages and pricing nailed down, so I’d love to hear from you! How did you decide on the way you would offer your design services to your clients? Where did you start with your pricing? Share in the comments below!
Feeling stuck with your design business?
I have totally been there. I remember the first couple years of running my business felt like I was constantly trying to figure things out, from pricing my services to finding clients and then how to work with clients once I finally had them. It was a never ending game of Googling and reading blog posts from my favorite business owners.
If this blog post helped you, then my Coaching for Designers services may help as well. I’m currently booking beta coaching sessions with designers who are looking for help with their business – whether it’s with clients, their website, their systems or something else. These sessions are just $77 and include a 1-hour Skype call to talk about what you’re struggling with and how to get past it plus actionable tips to keep going with your business. Because they’re just the beta sessions, though, I only have 3 more spots open!
If you’re interested in learning more, hit that button below to inquire with me!