7 Tips to Consider When Negotiating With Clients As a Freelancer
Are you a freelancer?
If yes, then we don’t need to tell you just how much time you must have spent negotiating with your clients, and no matter how much you hate it, you still have to do it with almost any project that lands on your lap – any good one, that is.
Being a freelancer is not that easy – you and your client both have to come to a satisfying outcome, even if you don’t plan to work from him. Just because you are a freelancer, it doesn’t mean that you need to win every deal, and you should agree to work on projects that have very low rates. Working on low rates means that you will be slow to respond, resistant to feedback and criticism, and be generally intolerable or others. That’s not comfortable for you plus it is also quite rude to the client.
Why go through all of that headache when you can negotiate your way, and be generally happy during your freelancing career?
Because, face it, who would like to work for pennies, right?
So, what should you – as a freelancer – need to do to work out the negotiation party, meaning what do you need to do to win the deal?
Not to worry – there are a few tips that you can use when negotiating with your clients.
Writing down your non-negotiables beforehand
Before you decide to negotiate with your client, it is recommended that you should write down your non-negotiable beforehand, so, that you don’t bow down and decide under pressure.
And even if your conditions are not met, it is not necessary that you have to stick to that client, instead, you can politely walk away – it’s not worth your time.
You will only drain yourself, in the long run, working for that client, if you agree, that is.
Avoid pressuring yourself
Just because the client came to you, it doesn’t mean that you need to take that deal. If you have your hands full, why bluff – you can simply say that to the client that you already have too many projects lined up, and that you won’t be able to take on his project.
If the client walks away from you, let them do it – you can’t manage each and everything, but yes, in goodwill, you can refer the client to a competitor, since you are not going to need that client.
All clients are not for you
Ah yes, it’s a given.
During the course of your freelancing career, you are bound to get many clients that are – let’s say it, they are simply not a good fit for you.
And no matter how much you try, you can’t vibe with them – either their budget is small, or they themselves are quite rude. In such cases, move on, and never look back. They are not worth your time, and you instead will drain yourself if you associate with them.
You will be surprised at how many clients that you are going to meet – many of them won’t meet your expectations, and only a small percentage will be best suited for you.
Don’t judge your clients based on that – amongst all of them, there will be someone who will suit you, and only by working for them, you will gain true freedom. Otherwise, just imagine, working for a rude client, it will be like getting yourself in hell, and we all know, how tiring can a rude client can be, right?
Understanding the position of the negotiating party
Don’t just get into the negotiation part the moment a client comes to you.
It is suggested that at first, you first get to know what the client needs, and then, if you see that it doesn’t meet your standards, only then, go into negotiating mode.
But always ask for the details first – the client came to you because they have a need that you can fulfill. Don’t simply negotiate first and say no.
You never know that it can be a deal of a lifetime. Patience, okay??
Everything is a give and get situation
If your client ever asks you to complete the project in a rush, it is only fair that you deserve something back.
Hence, it is recommended that before you decide to give in a request, you can consider asking for a rush fee. Or say, if you are a freelance writer, then, you can ask the client for a byline.
Overcharging a bit
No matter what project ends up on your lap, it is suggested that you should always consider it increasing to 10 percent.
There are two ways this could go this – either the client will try to negotiate with you, and will bring the budget that you originally wanted, or they can simply say yes, and you will be thrilled to have the project.
Avoid discounting yourself
The biggest mistake that freelancers make during the course of their careers is related to the ‘budget’.
Under no conditions, should you lessen your rates, just because the budget of the project is too high – the client came to you because they need your services, and you, when trying to lower your rates, it will prompt the client to suspect you.
All of the times, the concern of the clients is usually about your quality, your experience, or it can even be from their side – like how they can get approval from their boss. And you know what – you can easily resolve their concern in ways that don’t involve the budget.
So, you see, there are ways on how you can win your clients through the art of negotiation, and possibly avoid the toxic ones. Just because the clients came to you, it is not necessary that you have to agree to work for all of them.
Go through the above-mentioned points carefully, and plan your way ahead with a thorough plan. Don’t hurry, take your time, and you will be well on your way ahead to an experienced freelancer.
So, have you gone through the tips already?
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