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How to explain to a client I have no 'price list'?

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  • How to explain to a client I have no 'price list'?

    Everyday I receive lots of letters asking about my rates. Usually they look like: "What are your rates?" or "Do you have a price list?" and don't include any brief, references or previews.
    In my reply I explain what price depends on and what I need to know for exact estimate. Also I include all information about conditions, payment methods, file requirements in this letter. Besides I mention that I don't divide my work on levels and I am not interested to do bad work to fit their budget etc.
    In short, my letter covers all possible questions and is concise.

    And their letters are shorter than tweets, very similar and indicate unprofessionalism. They don't need any business proposals and contracts, they refuse to write a brief or give some references, they don't rely on my taste but still want "something". I even can't help them to find solution or offer my ideas because of lack of communication. They don't tell any word about their project, care about rates only and convince me I must have 'price list'.

    Do you face with such cases and how do you handle with it?

  • #2
    Re: How to explain to a client I have no 'price li

    Step back and see it from their point of view. If they want a price, give them an hourly rate and say you'll prepare an estimate or quote based on sight of a layout or written brief. I always dig a little to see if they know what they're talking about and hint that the job sounds either straightforward or will take at least a day! The last thing they want is a speech or detailed explanation but I appreciate you want to cover your ass. Give 'em hope. Ha! Anyway, you must be doing something right to get enquiries on a daily basis.

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    • #3
      Re: How to explain to a client I have no 'price li

      Of course, this is just my opinion...you should at least have a starting point for your rate. Give them that and indicate the price could go up or down depending on the images. I find that by giving a starting out rate, they'll decide if it's within their budget and if interested they continue communication with you. If it's out of their price range they'll be on their way. If communication continues, that's when you need to see the images in order to provide an accurate price quote.

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      • #4
        Re: How to explain to a client I have no 'price li

        An approach like simply demanding a price list sounds like an attempt to low-ball, so I would probably hit delete. Short of that, a quote of your hourly rate and a statement about hourly estimates being per-job should suffice.

        In 2014 you can't win by competing on price.
        Learn by teaching
        Take responsibility for learning

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        • #5
          Re: How to explain to a client I have no 'price li

          It's possible that they aren't "clients" at all, but, competitors trying to figure out how to lowball pricing.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: How to explain to a client I have no 'price li

            Many thanks for your replies. They all are really helpful!

            Originally posted by Repairman View Post
            I appreciate you want to cover your ass. Give 'em hope.
            No, I just want to be nice with people no matter who they are

            Originally posted by Benny Profane View Post
            It's possible that they aren't "clients" at all, but, competitors trying to figure out how to lowball pricing.
            Oh, how people waste their time!(
            Though they don't sound like clients as they have no idea what they are talking about(

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            • #7
              Re: How to explain to a client I have no 'price li

              I have a cut and paste reply to questions like that. Something like "Projects are determined by a number of factors, time, complexity, location...", etc., etc. I conclude with starting points, like "generally speaking, xxxx projects begin at $xxx".

              I wouldn't give specific pricing w/o knowing the person is 'real', talking to them, getting a vague brief, etc.


              Everyone fishes for prices somehow, not much you can do about it, but don't waste time/effort w/o some possibility of it benefiting you.

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              • #8
                Re: How to explain to a client I have no 'price li

                I would agree with most what others posted in the thread. I think such request are coming from low end clients and would try to investigate a little before replying. If I see there is a hope to get a decent client then I'll try to initiate a conversation and get more info. Much like you described you do. If I can't find any info on the client and all I have is this short price request I would only bother with template answer. Anything more would be a waste of my time and time is valuable especially if you get many requests every day.

                P.S. I think you have very good business and communication practice as it is, but I would only adjust for this kind of short requests you get and wouldn't invest too much time here. I would spend it either on improving other areas of my business or looking for better clients.

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                • #9
                  Re: How to explain to a client I have no 'price li

                  many thanks, you confirmed all my assumptions about that matter))

                  Comment

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