At some stage in your career, you'll need to think about increasing your fees. Living costs might have increased, or you might need to invest additional funds into your business to help it grow. Regardless of why you might need more money, asking your existing clients for it is never easy. Therefore, this Hub post will offer 6 ways to increase your fees and (hopefully!) retain your clients too.
The first thing you should do when thinking about raising your fees, is to make sure that your client is fully aware of what your work involves. Often, clients don't realize the amount of effort that goes into a translation, after all that's why they're hiring you!
If the cost of living is increasing in your country, then informing your clients that inflation is causing you to raise your fees is a reasonable request. As you'll be dealing with clients from all over the world, they won't automatically be aware of your country's cost of living, so keeping them informed of your reasoning is a good idea.
If you're lucky enough to be turning work away, see if some of your lower-paying clients are willing to increase your remuneration. Telling them that you're asking for this increase because you're in high demand shows that you're a desirable individual to work with and that they're getting their money's worth!
Have you recently invested in a course that expands your skill-set? Or perhaps your level of experience has grown significantly over the last few years? With an increase in ability should come an increase in remuneration too, so by pointing out to your client how you've grown over the last few years they may be able to see how your work, and thus value, has evolved too.
When you first star working with a client, working hard to exceed their expectations will increase your overall value to them. And when the time comes to raise your fees, hopefully they'll see how much better you are than other translators who offer cheaper rates but only deliver work to the minimum acceptable standard.
If a client objects to your request for a raise, why not see if a compromise could be reached? For example, you could ask to be put on a retainer, or guaranteed a consistent flow of work each month instead of just being sent work as and when. Although you might not be getting paid as much as you'd like, having a dependable stream of work will mean that you can cut down on unpaid time spent on finding new clients.
Have you managed to successfully raise your fees? Do the above tips seem helpful? Let us know in the comments!