I wish I had a penny for every time I am asked whether an expert, a professional, a coach, a consultant or a trainer should quote their prices on their website.
There is so much confusion out there. Everybody seems to be saying and doing something different and after spending hours looking at what the other players in your space are doing online, you are probably still as confused as you were when you started your “research”.
What I will share with you in this article is much more than free online marketing tips. I will show you how to think about this so that you can make a decision that makes sense for your business and is totally congruent with your values.
The place to come from with this, as with everything we do as experts, is service: a genuine desire to help people. If you have followed me for any length of time, you probably knew I was going to say that plus you knew that I am not into tricks and tactics. (I actually have only one trick and tactic and it works wonderfully: I don’t use tricks and tactics. I treat my clients and community like intelligent people and that has been incredibly successful for me).
Why Modelling What Other People Do Will Drive You Crazy...
Stop wasting your time visiting websites to “see” what other people are doing. That is probably the best online marketing tip you will get.
It won’t work because you don’t know in what stage of their business they are and whether the strategy they are using is working for them (or not). Maybe they are also “modelling” someone else. Who knows?
Oh, a word of caution in case you are actually trying to model what the big names in your industry are doing: their strategy can only work if your business is at the same stage.
So, if you are not supposed to model others, what can you do? Let’s have a look at the first distinction you need to make…
Are You Selling Products Or Services?
This is the first distinction you need to make.
Let’s start by talking about the price of products.
If you sell products on your site, make sure you take your time to make clear what the real value of the product is and what the benefits to your customers are. You have probably seen that products, especially information products, are sold with a sales letter that covers the real value of the product before presenting the price.
There is a good reason for that: you are not face-to-face with the visitor considering buying from your site so your sales letter (sometimes a video) needs to address all possible questions and concerns. The visitor to your website needs to have enough trust in the value of your product and in you to enter their payment information so give them everything they need so that they can make a decision.
HOT TIP - If you are selling products online, taking away the risk from the purchase by offering a guarantee is extremely valuable.
SUPER HOT TIP – Invest in learning how to communicate the transformation that this product can bring to your client's life so that the value of your products is crystal clear.
Fees For Your Services
Shall you quote the fees for your services? Here it gets more complicated.
If the services are standard and can be really booked from your website, you can use the same approach as with a product (and you will still need to clearly explain the value and address all possible concerns).
In most cases with professional services, you will need to have a conversation with the potential client to determine exactly if or how you can help them. In that case, it is not that useful to quote fees.
Would a doctor quote a fee without a diagnosis? Most importantly, would it be helpful for the patient?
MY QUESTION TO YOU - As important as it is for your potential client to talk to you, it is for you to talk to them. Do you really want people to sign up for a very personal service like coaching without knowing if you even like the person?
Personally, I want to make sure that it is a good fit and that I will enjoy working with them. (I love the work I do and I love all my clients and that is absolutely non-negotiable to me).
Worried that your potential clients go price shopping?
Some experts are afraid that people are “price shopping” and that is the reason why they are afraid to quote their fees.
I understand their concern and this is how I look at this: nobody wants coaching, professional services, training, consulting…
What??? Yes, nobody gets up in the morning thinking “today I need to hire a coach/trainer/professional/therapist/consultant/NLP practitioner/hypnotherapist, etc”.
People search online for solution to urgent problems and might not even be very clear what coaching/NLP/EFT, etc is.
If you ONLY give your website visitor information about pricing in order to make a decision, they will probably go with the lowest price because they don’t know better.
If the only information a visitor has is that on website A, coaching is 500/hour and on website B it is 300/hour, how do you think they will choose?
If you are going to quote your fees, you need to establish the value of what your services can do to solve the urgent problem of your potential client,
TIP - “Selling The Invisible” by Harry Beckwith is an excellent book about selling services and deals with many of the nuances of selling services, which are intangible. (Link to Amazon in case you want to check it out)
A Confused Mind Never Buys
When presenting the price, like with anything else that involves an invitation for your web visitor to make a decision, you need to be clear and present clear options.
If you have different ways of working with you or different packages make sure your visitor understands the options. A powerful online marketing tip is to limit the number of choices to minimize the confusion.
For more marketing online tips on how to create a website that actually sells your services, check out this article -
Be Prepared To Talk To Your Visitors Anyway
The more significant the investment, the more people need to talk to you or someone on your team.
They usually need the reassurance that they are making the right decision. Sometimes, depending on the options, they actually need help making a decision.
One argument I hear a lot in favor of quoting the prices is that that way people won’t need to talk to you. I find that is not usually the case. I think it is just a fantasy that if you have a website you won’t need to talk to another human being ever again.
Make A Decision About Your Fees And Stick To It
Whether you decide to post your fees on your website or not, make a list for yourself with your prices and stick to them, (Nothing is more unethical and leaves people wondering how serious you are than when you quote a price but decide to change it if they raise an objection).
Lesson From My Dad - This is something I learned from my dad: my fees are the fees I quote. If somebody asks for a discount and I change my fees, was I lying when I first answered?
Now to the website issue… everything in marketing is a test. If you are not sure whether it is a good idea to quote your fees or not, test it. Then you will know for sure.
The good news is… websites are not carved in stone. If you change your mind about quoting your prices, you can always make adjustments.
I would love to finish with a humorous note: this video shows 10 cartoons we can learn lots from about pricing. Enjoy!
Till next time… remember your awesomeness is portable. You can take it with you anywhere.