In business, the prices you charge are one of, if not the most important elements. There is endless debate in the entrepreneurship sphere as to how you should reveal those prices. While some people advocate that you should post your prices on your website for everyone to see, others believe you should wait for an inquiry to reveal more customized prices to potential clients. I like to believe in something a little bit in the middle.
I’m not claiming that this is the best method for every person in every industry. I’ve just found from personal experience as both the client and the professional, seeing prices online helps. While everyone has their own opinions, it seems that a lot of people agree with me. Below I’ve asked some other entrepreneurs to weigh in as well.
What works for me
I think that you should post base prices online. If you take a look at my Packages Page you’ll see that my prices are listed as “from $1600”. This works well for me because it gives people a rough idea of what my price range is, but still leaves room for me to raise the prices and give each potential client a customized quote based on their needs. While the $1600 price tag might work well for someone who just needs a basic website with 5 pages, it’s not appropriate for someone who needs a website with 20 pages, commerce, a customized search, and more. So the ‘from’ let’s people know that these prices are only a starting point.
Give people a range
I think it’s important to give people a base range of your prices because then you filter out the people who do not have the budget to work with you. If someone sees my price of $1600 and only has a budget of $400, they likely won’t contact me. This means that I don’t have to spend time speaking to and trying to close deals with clients who don’t have the budget for my services.
“I just rebranded my entire company back in March and putting a price list up was one of the big moves I did. And honestly… best decision. My visitors totally have appreciated it. It’s taken ALL anxiety out of having the money talk (because people already know what to expect and I don’t have to cringe when I let them know pricing). Also, all the people who have reached out to me since have been WAY more serious about working with me than before. I used to spend hours responding to emails and writing up quotes. I’ve saved myself a ton of headache.”
Weed out clients who aren’t serious
Another great reason to post prices is to weed out any potential clients who aren’t serious about your services. If you post a price online, people see that price and know that you are a serious entrepreneur. This also makes them realize that when they get in touch with you they should also be serious about their project. No one will email you with an unprofessional intro and no idea of what they really want, because your prices are telling them that you’re not ready to waste time.
“As a consumer that hired a graphic designer last week, I didn’t consider anyone that didn’t have their prices displayed. I needed to hire someone quickly and needed to know it would just take a few emails to get the project off the ground.”
Give people comfort
If you don’t post your prices you’re more likely to get clients who don’t have a high enough budget, but at the same time you are also likely missing out on people who do have the budget. If your site is beautiful and your services are listed out nicely, a potential client might think that you are worth more than you actually charge. In fact, they might think that you are so awesome that you’re out of their budget. Without any prices or starting points for them to reference, they likely move on without contacting you because they are fearful of contacting you, hearing outrageous prices, and being embarrassed that they can’t afford that.
I not only believe that prices should be posted online because of my experience as a designer, but also my experience as a consumer. If I’m looking to hire someone for things, I never even consider them if they don’t have prices on their page. I will find a beautiful site and services that sound amazing, but if the price isn’t there I just roll on by.
“Once I wanted to get prices from a company. I just wanted a price. I didn’t need a sales pitch. They didn’t have prices listed and I had to do a call with them before they’d finally send over a price PDF. We both wasted time for me to just immediately see they were completely out of my price range. If I’d known this from the get-go, neither of us would have had our time wasted.”
Have you ever looking on classifies like Craigslist or Kijiji in search of something that you want to buy? Maybe an apartment or a product. You search, and tonnes of results come up. Some with prices in your range, some with high prices, and some with ‘Contact Us’ listed instead of a price. Which listing are you likely to actually contact and potentially purchase? If I know anything about sales, it’s likely the one that is in your budget, not the one that asks you to contact them to get a price. Other industries are just the same, showing people your prices can only help you in the long run.
“By not sharing your prices on your website you are really agreeing to take on extra work. By not having your prices listed you are going to get A LOT of client requests and most of those are probably going to be from individuals who want free designs because they didn’t see your prices listed. You also are targeting basically everyone by doing this instead of targeting you ideal client. On the other hand, by listing your prices you are going to decrease your client requests because you are going to automatically elliminate those who are outside of your price range. But also by listing your prices you are taking your value seriously instead of hiding what you charge.”
There is only one scenario in which I think that posting prices on your site could be a bad idea. That is if you are new to your industry and are really willing to take any jobs, regardless of budget. Though everyone, no matter how new, should have price limits and standards, I understand that in the beginning it’s usually a free for all of ‘I’ll take what I can get’. In this case, it’s important that when a potential client contacts you you learn how to feel them out for what their budget might be, and then you quote them a number that you feel is fair. If you’re willing to do the same work for $100 and $1000 depending on the client’s budget, then posting numbers on your site really won’t help. But at the same time remember that your time is valuable! Don’t let yourself and your prices stay in this grey area for too long.
“As a consumer, I only shop with people who have their pricing listed. It makes my life easier and doesn’t waste my time. When I call, I’m already sold. As a business owner, having my prices listed has generated better leads because everything is already spelled out.”
Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide what’s right for you and your business. Maybe the best path is experimentation. You could always create two identical landing pages, one with prices and one without, and track which one brings you more leads. It would take time to truly test, but it would be worth it to optimize your funnel in the long run!