What do you do if a client says you’re too expensive?
I’m sure most of us have experienced that moment when you reveal the price and your client says, "That's a bit more than I was expecting. Sorry, but it's beyond my budget." The big question then is, what do you do next? One option, of course, is just to walk away. You may not be prepared to take on the business for less than your original price, and that's fine. It’s often a good thing to do. But let's imagine that you particularly want to win this piece of work. What do you do then?
What you should never do is automatically give a discount. That's crazy. Instead, do one of the following.
#1 Review the value
Usually if a client thinks a service you’re offering is too expensive, it’s not because the price is too high but because they don't fully understand its value. So go back and talk about the benefits again. Remind them of the end result, of the difference it will make to their lives. You might find that’s enough to make them go ahead. If not, move on to step two.
#2 Reveal another option
If you've been following my previous posts or videos you'll have heard me talk about the magic of three. Of how any service you provide should always offer clients three pricing options. So, if you’ve been telling a client about your gold level and it's too expensive, reveal your silver. If that's too expensive, reveal your bronze. If even that’s too expensive, you’ll need to try the next step.
#3 Change the package
Although you should always start with three packages, the more a client can tailor these to their own circumstances, the easier it’ll be to end up with a price they're happy with. A great way of doing this is by using my Cloud Pricing software, which lets you change the answers to different questions. If, for example, all three of your options include a quarterly business review meeting, you could offer the option of changing this to just two a year and reduce the price accordingly.
#4 Offer behaviour rewards
If even step three fails, then a final option is to offer a discount – but only if the client does something for you in return. Asking for referrals is a great example. You can say something along the lines of, "We don’t normally offer discounts but, if you're willing to refer us to three other business owners, then we can cut back on our marketing budget and pass the savings on to you. So would you be happy to do that?" If they say yes – which nine times out of ten they will – then give them an appropriate discount.
Another example could be asking them to present their information in a different format that makes your life easier. If they agree, again, you can swap this for a discount. (I’m sure you can come up with loads more great suggestions – if so, feel free to share them in the comments below.)
If you found this helpful, then you can learn more by watching my video here.
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Wishing you every success on your pricing journey.
Chartered Accountant, public speaker and #1 best-selling author of
“Effective Pricing for Accountants”
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