Monica Carter Tagore reports:
"Many freelance writers have questions about pricing their services. They wonder if they are too high or too low or even what the norm is for a particular type of writing...Many freelancers...err on the side of being the cheapest or lowest-priced competitor, thinking that will surely land them clients. And it might, but not the type of clients you want. It’s usually never good to price your services very low when you are a solo professional or running a service business. That is because there are only so many hours in the day and you could very well find yourself working at a full-time rate for what, essentially, is part-time money. But overpricing yourself isn’t a great option either. This does not mean you can’t charge a rate higher than the average or higher than your competition. You can do that, but only if you can back it up. Some clients don’t mind paying a higher rate if it means some added benefit...In fact, some clients will steer clear of the low-price option when it comes to service providers. They wonder why there is such a low rate...A good way for a freelancer to price her writing services is to consider how much she would like to earn in a year and break that down into an hourly rate. For instance, if she would like to earn $50,000 a year and assuming she would like to take two weeks of vacation, then her weekly income should be $1,000. Let’s say she wants to bill 30 hours a week...That would bring the figure to $33. But she can’t just charge $33 an hour because it doesn’t account for taxes, operational expenses, etc. So a better figure may be $50 an hour...Seeing how much other writers charge can help you know if your rate is in the right neighborhood, so you’re not too far out of the range. But it’s not necessary to hit it on the head exactly. Remember, your needs and experience may mean your rate will be different...The more experience you have, the more you can charge. So if you are a beginning freelance writer, you may set your base rate as $45 or $50 an hour, but you may give yourself a raise after some time. Your experience will mean you’ll likely write better, know how to handle certain client issues and concerns better, and produce an overall better product. Extras also earn more...Your hourly rate is just one piece of the equation when it comes to charging for what you do...Unless there are specific reasons for sending a quote with an hourly rate, go for a per-project rate. You can create your quote on a calculation based on your hourly rate, but the quote you give the client can simply show the rate. No need to go into the fact that it’s based on X number of hours. That’s for your internal estimation. All the client needs to know is that it will cost X amount for this service. You can detail what the service includes, so the client has a full understanding of what she is paying for, but it shouldn’t matter what time you do it or how long it takes. After all, what you are doing is about the value you provide, not when or how long you work. Whether you work at 10 in the morning or 10 at night is your business...If you quote based on an hourly rate, do you really want a cheap client cross-examining you about how many hours you spent on a project? And what happens if you finish the project early, but do a great job? Should you be penalized for being efficient and good? Besides, you left your 9 to 5 because you wanted more freedom; you certainly don’t want a client breathing down your neck counting your hours rather than looking at the quality of work...[T]he per-project rate is...a lot more transparent. The client knows from the outset what he will pay...This makes for a smoother experience all around. Your client gets to count on the rate you quoted, and you get to focus on doing the best job possible. A per-project rate can also allow you to add in some extras that can boost the value of what you provide. These extras can help justify a higher rate and set your business apart as the quality solution. Remember, setting your rate is about more than simply X dollars an hour. It’s about the service, experience, and value you provide. Calculate that equation to set your rate."
Writing and editing can be pretty rigorous processes if you want to do them well, but that's what this page is here for. Check out the latest tips here.