Personally, I used to worry about how to react if the client said “no” – I didn’t want to stop working for them, but if I continued at my old rates, would I look like a pushover?
Let’s say you run a self-improvement blog, and you’re looking for a writer to expand your content output. Someone who approaches you offering to write about dog training, gardening, sports, dating, and anything else you’ll pay them to write about. Someone who markets themselves as a self-improvement specialist, who spends the majority of their time writing self-improvement based content. In other words, the age-old question: do you go with the Jack of all trades or a renowned specialist? Only after I switched to a specialist approach did my freelance career take off – as did my rates.
This led me to implement the following strategy: once two clients had accepted my current rates – thus validating my prices – I would quote future clients 10% higher.
This allowed me to climb the pay scale relatively quickly, consistently swapping low-paying clients with higher-paying ones until I reached a point where I was happy.
If a business experiences higher costs, it, in turn, will increase its prices to protect margins. Your clients will be aware of this and probably increase their prices annually to reflect this. Clients are likely to respond better to this expected behavior, as you appear less like a money grabber trying to pull a fast one, and more like someone implementing their year-end strategy. As an added tip: always give your clients at least one month before implementing price hikes – it’s just common courtesy!
Many inexperienced freelancers attempt to increase their earning potential by working all hours of the day. When worded this way – and by highlighting the value proposition – a client is more likely to accept. Of course, you can’t just say this to every client and then not cut back on your hours – that’s unethical. Regular readers of the Elegant Themes blog will know that we’ve already covered how to identify and avoid problem clients in detail – if you haven’t read the post already, it’s well worth a read.
As experienced freelancers will tell you, most “bad” clients are overly concerned with money.
When you work only with “good” clients – clients who appreciate you and can understand the value you provide – you give yourself more rate flexibility down the line.
For the record, you have almost zero chance of getting a raise from problem clients, which further highlights the importance of due diligence. If you really don’t want to risk pricing yourself out of legitimate business, wait for opportunities you feel indifferent about. If the client responds positively, you have your first super-high-paying job, and you have tangible evidence that some clients can afford to – and will – pay those rates. With this in mind, think about how you could present your expanding range of services to a client.
Synergies – for example, a content writer could offer social media management to provide extra value. Better working relationship – by working more closely, you will better understand the client’s needs so that you can deliver a tailored service. Long-term relationship – by increasing your workload for a particular client, you’ll become more committed to that client.
Convenience – the client only has to deal with one contractor, rather than one for each separate service.


If you promise to help scale a client’s business without requiring any more of the client’s time, trust me: they will be more than happy to pay your higher rates. This is one of the most frequently-made freelancer mistakes: just because a client asks for a discount, doesn’t mean you have to give them one! As a freelancer, you have three ways you can earn more money: take on more clients, work more hours, or increase your rates.
Remember, though: sometimes a client will decline, not because of anything you did wrong, but because their budget just won’t stretch any further. By Shaun QuartonShaun is a freelance blogger from the UK, with a passion for online entrepreneurship, content marketing, and all things WordPress. A very useful post, maybe one of the best I have read here as it addresses a core issue we all face.
If your read my last post, learning how to increase click through rate for your banner ads is something that may be of interest.
The location of your display ad on a publication’s site can have a major impact on the amount of clicks you receive. Amy Schumer’s movie may not be gaming related, but this ad is an excellent example of how to increase click through rate by designing creative to stand out.
There is a reason Google recommends wider banner ad formats over their taller counterparts. While it may seem crazy, simply adding a call-to-action button to your display ad can dramatically increase your CTR. Emmy Jonassen is an independent video game marketing consultant, freelance writer and speaker helping indie developers build adoring fan bases for their games.
Perhaps it’s the fear of a client getting angry and dismissing you – this almost never happens. Oh, and it should go without saying, but quality work, a solid reputation, and an impressive portfolio are prerequisites for earning the big bucks. The truth is, you’re more likely to secure customers when you market yourself as a specialist, and, more importantly, you’re also likely to earn more per hour.
Initially, I offered to write about any topic under the Sun, meaning I was effectively marketing myself as a homogenous SEO article writer – these writers are a dime a dozen.
It came about as, when I first started out, I had no idea how much to charge, or how much the market would be happy to pay – here’s a hint: it’s probably more than you think.
However, this confirmed to me that my low rates were acceptable – and perhaps people would be willing to pay more, too.
Of course, you might prefer to increase your rates for every client, or every third client, and who says you can’t raise your rates by more than 10% at a time? This means that gradually rising costs are just a part of business – also known as cost-push inflation. Wait for a time of year when increasing your rates is expected – the end of the calendar or financial year, for example. Clients may also be more understanding at these times as they are in the process of renegotiating prices themselves. After a few months of this, most of us realize it’s no fun, and try to cut back to a healthier working schedule. When you reduce your working hours – a decrease in supply – this should be accompanied by an increase in your rates. You could tell your clients that you’re cutting back your hours so that you can focus on just one or two clients – thus increasing the quality of your work and giving you the opportunity to improve communications with your select group of clients. However, it is an excellent way to increase your rates and redress your work-life balance in one move.


There’s nothing wrong with being prudent, of course, but when a client tries to squeeze every last cent out of you, that should set alarm bells ringing.
They will understand that the value of your time increase with experience, plus they will want to reward you for the stellar job that you’re doing so that they can retain you for longer.
This strategy is especially viable if you are already booked solid, giving you the freedom to try new things without too much fear.
We all get them: inquiries that, for whatever reason, don’t excite you as much as they should – perhaps the work is slightly outside your usual scope, or you don’t get an overly positive vibe from the client.
Then, go ahead and charge it – you have nothing to lose, as you probably wouldn’t have accepted the project at your regular rates.
However, once you’ve established yourself, there’s no reason you can’t expand the services you offer – slowly. If the client isn’t prepared to pay, you should politely turn them away – they are likely to be a “problem” client.
When he's not behind a laptop, you'll find him rocking a guitar, playing tennis, or losing at FIFA. Despite being freelance full-time seven years I am still struggling with rates, and it’s that much more difficult when offering a service to clients around the world with widely different standards of living. I will definitely be thinking about the tips provided in this article when negotiating rates with my clients. I’m picking up a client who paid $6000 for a hand built wordpress website that could have been done with a template for half the price.
With the industry average CTR hovering around 0.1%, display advertising can be a serious waste of money. In fact, ads above the fold have been found to have up to a 36% higher click through rate than those below the fold. They want you to get on with the job without causing them any extra hassle – I know from personal experience, I’m prepared to pay a freelancer considerably more for a completely hands-off experience.
However, from your perspective, they are asking you to work for longer at the lower rate – never a good idea. I would enjoy reading a post from you about another common freelancing issue, which is clients who delay paying. Avoid this pitfall by considering the design of the site you’re advertising on as you build your creative. When choosing between standard ad sizes, opt for 300 x 250, 728 x 90 and 300 x 600 sizes for PC and 320 x 100 for mobile when possible. In this post, Emma, you have mentioned all points very clearly that can be understood by layman quickly. If you have this target is not possible to increase rates, so, first, you need to reach customers with more economic opportunities.
I haven't written a blog post on this topic for Indie Game Girl, however, HubSpot has an excellent post on the topic, as well as a free eBook. It is a slow process because rich client doesn’t look at freelance with slow budget portfolio.



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