Should you charge $27? $270? $2700?
It might just be the most stressful decision you ever have to make: what to charge?
You’ve got the competition to consider, your own skill set, what you perceive to be your skills (yes, this is different from the former for most of us), what your market will pay, your location, and a host of other variables. Working it out can feel like a hurdle you can’t quite get past.
You’re at your wits end. What is considered a fair price? Why can’t someone just wave a magic wand and tell you: You should charge X!
Of course, there are some strategies you can employ. One popular method is to use a calculator found on Bplans or Calculators.org. These will quite quickly tell you what you need to be charging to reach your income goals, and they’re a great place to start.
But what about all those other questions? Creating a solid pricing structure requires you to do a little more digging. So with your starting number in line, take a look at one of my FAVORITE resources: Why your tarot business isn’t making a profit by Theresa Reed. This link is applicable to many businesses because it explains …. Just read it because some articles just need to be read!
This might take a little detective work, since a lot of coaches and service providers don’t publish rates. But if you pay attention to their websites and social media, ask a few discreet questions, and get on their mailing list, you can figure it out.
Side note: I prefer to do business with people who have their prices clearly established on their website. Because I prefer this, my prices are visible for all to see. Other people feel differently. They prefer to establish a relationship with the person and then share their coaching fees.
It’s up to you to decide what you will do. You do you!
Writer’s Oracle Wisdom: Be realistic about who, exactly, your competition is, though. Don’t undervalue or over-sell yourself. In other words, make sure you’re comparing yourself to another provider who shares the same skills, market, and track record, rather than simply looking at who you strive to become.
For example, you offer “discovery sessions” or “laser coaching”. Coach A charges $275 for 90 minutes; Coach B charges $500; Coach C charges $225. All three coaches are doing well for themselves. It would be wise to find a price range between $225 – $500. Find what feel comfortable for you, what reflects your skill set, and allows you to put your head down on your pillow at night with ease.
In some fields, this is easy. There are certifications and educational programs that allow you—by virtue of having achieved them—to charge a certain rate. If you’ve followed this path, then pricing will be easy for you. If not, take a solid look at what you can legitimately claim as a skill.
Look, too, at your track record. Have you proven yourself by helping former clients (and do you have the testimonials and case studies to show for it)? Have your former clients moved on to bigger and better coaches after working with you? (That’s a good thing!) These are all reasons to maybe consider a higher price range than you might have first thought.
Some coaches take this kind of direction when it comes to pricing: find a few people to participate in their focus group for free with the exchange of their testimonial on your website; then, raise their rates incrementally.
In the game of setting rates, it’s your market that has the final say. As any first year economy student can tell you, the price of anything lies where what the buyer is willing to pay meets what the seller is willing to accept.
If your goal is to give newbies a helping hand and lead them down the path to success, that unfortunately means you can look forward to low paying gigs. That’s not a bad thing—everyone has to begin somewhere—but it does need to be acknowledged. If, on the other hand, your target market is more established and economically stable, then a higher fee isn’t just warranted—it’s a must. They will expect a higher price, and will not find value in the lowest-cost provider of anything, whether it’s coffee beans or business coaching.
One of the most amazing people I know that has a strong handle on this topic is Theresa Reed, The Tarot Lady. Her target market is clearly established and this is reflected in her prices. Her jive is to help intuitive entrepreneurs who are starting out, find their groove and success. If you haven’t already, I highly encourage you to check her out: The Tarot Lady.
Finally, don’t forget that pricing is never set in stone. It’s flexible. If you find you’re attracting the wrong market (or no market at all) you can always change your rates. Working too hard for not enough return? Raise your rates.
It’s your business. You get to call the shots.
Best wishes in all that you do.
Dr. Melissa Halstead helps small businesses develop, launch, and market their online courses, workshops, and masterclasses so they can inject more cash into their business while making a difference in the lives they serve.
Would you like to know more? If so, reach out to her on:
FB: Melissa Annalise Halstead | Twitter: @MeliHalstead | Snapchat: @melihalstead or fill out the contact form.