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In the online world, especially entering as a beginner, there is a phrase tossed around which is:“charge what you are worth”. I have a huge problem with the phrase.
In the virtual service provider world and starting out, you need to decide what price to charge your clients. There are basically two ways you can structure your prices- hourly and packages. When you go asking around in facebook groups, there is bound to be at least one person who is going to reiterate some form of the “charge your worth” phrase.
I have a HUGE problem with this phrase- especially when it’s being said to a newbie entrepreneur.
On the One Hand…
the phrase is VERY subjective. The issue has a lot to do with the mindset of the individual. They are NEW and scared and coming from a place of vulnerability. Their opinion of themselves is most likely going to be off because their self-esteem is likely not as high as someone who has been in the game longer.
On the Other Hand…
the value that the new business person provides to their client can be all over the range, based on how stressed the client was to begin with and how much the newbie has been able to assist and support their client. Every person has their own individual breaking point when the stress gets to be overwhelming that they ask for help and end up hiring someone, such as said newbie.
How You SHOULD Price Your Services:
I generally like to suggest a new virtual service provider starts with charging hourly and create their own hourly rate. I don’t suggest going any lower than $10 USD per hour for anyone in North America.
In many cases, I believe that this is too low, but for the newbie who doesn’t have a whole lot of online skills to offer and no “real world” experience on their resume, then something between the $10-15 range would be reasonable. Get your feet wet and figure out what you like doing and what you are good at doing (not necessarily the same thing).
For example, updating a client’s online calendar, checking their inbox for important messages, and hell, even organizing the client’s inbox would be reasonable to ask for $15 per hour.
One thing to note
I generally also recommend that the client pays for 5 hours upfront so that everyone has made a commitment to the work being done. This also allows for the newbie (you) to gage how long each task will generally take. Once the 5 hours have been used, and each party is still happy, then it is time to add some contracts and such. But, that’s a completely different post.
Comment below about whether you’ve ever heard the phrase or perhaps even given the “charge your worth” advice to anyone.