Discussion: Do you publicly advertise your pricing?

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pricing
Ah the age-old debate. To show prices or not to show prices on your website. There are pros and cons to both and Go Media has experimented with both in the past. We eventually decided to go against showing prices on our website, but the discussion never seems to go away. How would things change if we decided to show prices? For the better? Worse? Tell me your thoughts.

Showing Prices/rates on your site:

Pros:

  • Clients know the costs before they contact you, thus saving you time on writing estimates
  • You’re likely to get a higher number of more targeted leads when their pricing questions are answered up front
  • You can advertise you have a low price
  • You can put together easy-to-swallow package deals that get you more business
  • Probably more?

Cons:

  • Enables your competitors to undercut you on prices
  • Encourages price wars amongst design studios, thus devaluing the work.
  • Fixes you to adhere to your advertised prices, and when revisions/overages do occur, they’re usually accompanied with guilt and and an angry client
  • McDonalds-izes your business to more of a “store” mentality if you show “Shirt Designs – $150″ for example. Might seem tacky.
  • Probably more?

Hiding prices on your site:

Pros:

  • Each job is different, and requires a custom evaluation/quote.
  • Makes your work feel more valuable
  • Discourages price wars
  • If prices are generally high, you won’t scare off those leads – allowing you follow up and hopefully start a communication between you and the client that hopefully results in a new project being started
  • Allows you to quote a job for more established brands like Nike differently than a job for Bob’s Tool Shed.
  • Gives you more freedom and flexibility when you’re not stuck on a price
  • probably more?

Cons:

  • When you finally tell them the price, it can be unexpected
  • It requires more time to estimate, quote, and explain pricing over and over to each different client
  • Probably more?

Go Media chooses not to advertise our rates on our site. Mostly because we don’t want to appear too “selly” on our site. Another reason, is our rates are generally higher than a lot of freelance competitors (we know we’re worth the price, but a client sometimes just goes by price alone and might talk himself out of even contacting us if he sees that Joe “Freelance” Designer has a much lower price). There are obviously pros and cons to each, so I’m opening it up to discussion. What’s your take on the pricing debate?

Tell me your thoughts in the comments!

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About the Author, Jeff Finley

I'm a partner at Go Media, a Cleveland web design and development firm. We also specialize in print design and branding. I started Weapons of Mass Creation Fest and wrote the book Thread's Not Dead, teaching artists and designers how to start a clothing company. In my spare time, I write songs and play drums in Campfire Conspiracy. I'm a happy husband and an aspiring b-boy and lucid dreamer.

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