Picture Credits : Unsplash
The way we work has changed completely since the digital age took over almost a decade ago. More people have started jumping on the freelance bandwagon where they work for clients from anywhere around the world.
The internet has expanded our horizons and we are now exposed to all kinds of talent all around the globe. This is great also because we get to learn from all these talents and be able to absorb all that knowledge. The world is truly boundless now and we should definitely learn to benefit from it.
The Freelancer’s Problem
However, with something as amazing as being able to freelance your gigs and have side income, there is always a problem that you will need to fix. In this case, that problem is the fact of pricing your services.
It is not easy to price your own work, especially if you are just starting out and you have no idea what the market value is. Or you have no clue what the standards are, you might be putting yourself out there to get bullied by potential clients. We are not saying that every client there is out to get you, but if you do not know how to value your work, do not assume that they would know the value of your work either. Only you should be able to tell just how much your work is worth and how much of that can be translated into dollar signs.
Picture Credits : Unsplash
So, how does one price their clients while ensuring that everyone’s interests are taken care of? In this case, being taken care of means that your client gets the quality of work that they were expecting of you and you in return get the quality wages that match the quality of amazing work that you put out for the client in question.
Especially as accountants in the accounting industry, we know that most accountants just charge what the marketing is charging. This is not a bad idea as you are more competitive in the sense that you are able to compete in the average pool of other freelance accountants. However, we do believe that coming up with a number involves multiple facets such as :
- The market price
- The amount of work
- The time frame given
- The quality or intricacy of the work
- Your relationship with the client
Although your relationship with the client should not really affect the price of the service but it will affect the way you negotiate with them. Negotiating with family members or close friends will be deconstructed in depth in another article. Click here to read it!
So what are the rules when it comes to ensuring that you get paid the right amount for your hard work?
One of the easier ways to figure out a ballpark figure is to know what your budget is on a monthly basis. Basically, how much money you spend or how much extra money you need or want to spend. Take that or figure out a rough estimate of how much you would like to earn annually and you will be able to get your ballpark figure from there.
For ease of calculations, just say that you want to be a freelance accountant full-time, you can easily check the median annual salary of an accountant of your caliber online. According to Payscale Malaysia, the average median salary of an accountant is around RM58,000 a year.
Picture Credits : Payscale
This would translate to a monthly average of Rm4,800 per month. This can easily be obtained with 2-5 clients a month. Do note that when coming up with these numbers, you should be aware of your own monthly expenditures and make sure they match. Do your research first before you quit you full time job and go ahead with your freelancing gig full time.
Making sure you value your work above everyone else.
This statement is extremely important because if you don’t value your work, then how can anyone else value your work. How you view your work and skills will trickle down to your clients or potential clients. If you are nonchalant about your work, don’t expect your clients to take your seriously either. Perception is very important as it will offer valuable insight as to how your work is taken in by everyone else around you.
If you decide to underprice, you might bring about the risk of people not appreciating your work the way that they are supposed to be. You might even bring about more haggling if you set your prices lower than the industry standard. It is true that everyone wants a good bargain, but a good bargain is known to be of lesser quality in many industries.
Something that is more expensive will always be valued a lot more than something that is not. Perception buying is a real thing so let’s make sure that you don’t get sucked into that horrible spot of bad perception purchasing.
Lastly, believe in your product or service because you will always be your number one cheerleader!
Picture Credits : Unsplash
The human psychology is a beautiful subject of its own but we will delve into that more next time. In the case of pricing your accounting services today, if you do not believe in what you do, your client won’t either. If you are not feeling confident with your work, or if you think that you can do better – worry about that in private. Always make sure that the client cannot see that part of you. This is only because, there will always be something to improve on. If you can do the project the client gave you, be confident in your skills.
You need to ensure that you value yourselves first above all else. People will listen and flock to you if you carry the confidence of someone who believes in yourself. We are sure that you much rather visit a doctor who knows what he is saying compared to someone who is unsure about the prognosis he is giving you. It just shows the level of professionalism and confidence in their own field. If your client can’t trust you – an expert in the accounting field, then how are they supposed to trust you with their accounts.
Ensure that you target their confidence in you and hone in on that. The more they trust you, the higher the prices you can set because customers and clients will pay for quality.
Trust yourself to make it work.
The team at Consult U hopes that these small pieces of advice was able to help you figure out the pricing of your freelance consults and work. If you are in need of more clients, sign up on the Consult U platform today to get a steadier stream of clients who are willing to listen and pay you for your quality services!