Whether you have just decided to join the shift from the regular nine-to-five work schedule to the flexible hours of freelancing or have been around in the home based industry for quite some time now; setting up your rate will still appear to be quite tricky. Consider these factors to be able to come up with a rate that is not too low nor too high.
This is one of the most obvious and critical factors to consider when setting up your rate for a freelance job. Make sure you are not working for nothing. Sure, there are limited expenses to take care of in freelancing since it is home based, but you need to bear in mind that the work you do now requires you to use your own resources and these only means having higher bills for phone usage, electricity and computer maintenance.
YOUR ROI & PROFIT
This is business so you surely are to expect some return of investment and some profit on top of it. It is critical that you keep a watch of your earnings to make sure that you are gaining monetary value from your freelance job.
THE DEMAND FOR YOUR SKILLS
There are some skills that are currently of great demand (refer to Global Freelance Market Trends – July 2009). If your skills appear to be somewhat hard-to-find, then you surely deserve some rate extras. However, if you feel that your skills demand is on a decline, it is necessary for you to lower your rate a bit in order to compete amongst those who does the same freelance job as you do or is in the same boat as you are.
This is what most of us refer to as industry standards. This is a little difficult to determine as it varies depending on most factors considered. Additionally, there are very few resources to refer to on the web that has the statistics with regard to the rate of freelancers. Therefore, the best thing to do is to look around and ask. Doing so will at least give you the idea of how much the others charge and compete for the freelance job that you are aiming for accordingly.
Most often think that it is quite unfair to not be able to get a freelance job simply because of lack of experience— this may have a basis. However, with regard to setting up your rate; you can never really argue even if you feel that your skills deserve the same rate as the experienced freelancers charge. This is a privilege that they get to enjoy for staying in the industry. Additionally, clients are more comfortable to pay higher for services of those who are considered tenured as they feel these people are more capable of arriving at quality outputs.
You should never charge below your standards, however, it is also to be noted that there will be times when you will need to adjust depending on the kind of client and of the freelance job. A job that will allow you to grow in your field should be given considerations despite a lower rate. Similarly, a client who has been very good to work with should also be given considerations during rate negotiations. This won’t simply come out as an act of goodwill, but as an effort to maintain a good relationship with a priced client.
Finally, it is always best to keep a good head on your shoulders whenever you bid or quote a fixed price or hourly rate for a project. Keep everything as standard as possible while keeping in mind the important exceptions that are necessary to be done every now and then. A couple of cents difference is not bad anyway if you get to keep a very good client in the long run.