How Freelancers Can Negotiate Higher Rates Without Losing Clients

Tips for freelancers and self-employed workers asking for higher rates from clients without losing their business.

Freelancers don’t have a traditional job where pay raises are provided by employers every year or so. In order for freelancers and the self-employed to receive a pay raise, they need to specifically ask for it by increasing rates for clients. The pitch for higher prices can be a tightrope, but with these helpful tips, freelancers can potentially enhance their prospects of retaining their clients while at the same time demanding higher rates.

Give Clients Plenty Of Notice For Rate Increases

Never suddenly spring rate increases on clients. Giving clients a short amount of time to adjust to price increases may cause them to stop doing business with you completely.

Organizations may have multiple people in charge of finances. The group may have a set budget that needs approval from others to increase spending. Providing plenty of notice allows clients to make the necessary procedures to approve a price hike.

Highlight The Benefits Of Doing Business With You

You may want to explain to your clients why your services or products are valuable to them. The clients need to understand the value of doing business with you. Spotlight how long you have been in business and the benefits you have over your competition.

Maybe your product or services have gotten better by gaining valuable experience and your reputation has grown positively. Perhaps you offer extra services that your competitors don’t.

Offer More Services To Justify The Price Hike

Not everyone is going to willfully accept paying more for something. In order to retain customers, you may have to offer enhanced services or increase the amount of time you give to that client.

Be Honest As To Why You Need To Increase Rates

It may be helpful to explain exactly why you are increasing the rates. There are a variety of reasons why freelancers increase their prices. You may have over-expanded and need to reduce your clientele, which means that fewer clients need to pay more.

Perhaps, the supply chain issues have caused the prices of products you use to surge. Explaining why you’re increasing your rates may assist with the blow. Maybe reveal hidden costs in your business that most people wouldn’t know about.

It is possible you are raising your rates because the competition also increased their prices, and you’re keeping up with the current industry trends.

The consumer price index spiked 7% in December from a year prior – marking the fastest pace since June 1982. Most everyone is dealing with record inflation and higher costs of living. Clients will likely understand why you need to raise prices to keep pace with rising costs.

Show Empathy To Clients Who Balk Price Hikes

Nobody wants to pay more for something that they have been accustomed to paying a certain price over a lengthy period of time. If a client initially opposes price increases, you should show empathy and understanding towards their position. However, then pivot as to why the price increases are necessary and why your services are valuable even at a higher price.