If you’re a freelance graphic designer who makes a living from your highly specialized skill, then it is imperative to have a graphic design price list for all of the different services that you offer. In fact, whatever field of freelance work you’re involved with, you should always have an established rate for everything you do. That way, both your existing and potential clients will clearly know upfront exactly how much you charge for each particular thing you create.
Not only are there a few different types of graphic designers, there are several different services that each may offer. From business cards and logos, to brochures and beyond. However, regardless of what’s being created, a set rate is certainly recommended. This not only saves you from any confusion, but also from any related issues down the road. Even if you excel at or prefer providing a certain service above all the others, you’re still cheating yourself out of additional jobs if you don’t have a set list of standard services and their related cost. It should ideally contain many things that a client might expect a designer to be capable of, which may actually be quite a lot, considering the wide range of necessities companies can have nowadays.
Tips for Setting Rates
For those who work for a flat-rate or per project and not hourly, compiling an accurate rates list is absolutely essential. This is of course because the various services you offer will require varying amounts of time and feature different levels of difficulty. For starters, you must figure out how much to charge for each individual service you provide. So, it’s best to do a little research in order to find out the going rate for these things.
In fact, it is best to begin by taking a peek at what other comparable Graphic Design freelancers are currently charging. However, remember to take into consideration that rates will definitely vary between different geographical locations. The reason for this is of course due to vast differences in the cost of living around the world. For example, if you’re in Chicago, then it only makes sense to charge the appropriate rate for that particular location.
How To Price Your Products and Services
Before being awarded a contract, clients usually want you to give them an actual quote for the project. This is understandable, as people certainly prefer to know the price of something prior to proceeding. Even when you have a pretty good idea how long something will take, you should consider building in a little breathing room. Perhaps just to cover the possibility that it takes you a little extra time to do some tweaking. When you do get a client that prefers you work on an hourly basis, consider keeping track with timekeeping software. This way, you can even have ‘technical’ back-up to support your billing upon completion.
Any time spent regarding the project counts as billable time. So, be sure to include ‘non-billable’ tasks in your pricing as well. You need to know how much time you spend on other work, such as administrative and marketing, to get a realistic picture of your profitability. Develop a list of tasks that your creative process entails and make sure that you’re covering every detail when going thru the pricing process. When figuring a fixed hourly rate for a larger project, don’t forget your overhead and build your profit directly into it.
Profitable pricing is dependent upon accurate time tracking. No matter how you apply your fees for time spent on a project, your actual time must be accounted for. Then the results should be used for reference when estimating future projects. Without this info, you won’t really know if your prices are reeling in a profit or not. Also, when setting prices, remember to consider your expenses and any materials that will be required.
Freelance Graphic Design Agreements
While working with clients and rates, you want to know exactly what the client expects and they’ll want a clear idea of what they can ultimately expect from you. This is basically why we use contracts in the first place. A contract is simply a commitment in the form of a signed agreement. Therefore, when you fill in the details of a contract, here are some of the things to include:
- Number of revisions you will perform on the project. Determine how much time are you willing to put into the project for the proposed price.
- Provisions for additional charges if you go beyond the planned scope of the project
- If it’s a bigger project, you’ll probably want to get a partial payment upfront. Then, you can setup milestone payments as the project progresses. The terms can be specified within the contract.
- Consider spelling out any additional/out of the ordinary fees
Although services and prices will vary, here’s an example list that should at least help to get you going in the right direction. Again, be sure to research prices of other Graphic Design Artists your region for more guidance. For example, try an online search for ‘How much does logo design cost?’ then comb through some of the results, compare the prices, and decide how much you’re comfortable with making.
Seeing other people’s prices will help you to be competitive in a fast-paced market. So, although YOU have to figure out YOUR prices, the following are just some of the things that are generally found on a freelance design price list.
- Tri-Fold Brochure
- Single Page Flier
- Business Card Design
- Letterhead & Envelope Design
- Double-Sided Postcard Design
- Large or Detailed Infographic Design
- Large Poster or Sign Design
- Logo Design
And the list goes on…
Remember To Be Realistic
Unfortunately, people can often be inaccurate when it comes to estimating how long something will take. That’s just the way it is, whether it’s work related or whatever. The only way to know exactly how much time a particular project or task actually takes is to precisely track it. You can do that by timing yourself the old-fashioned way by watching the clock and writing it down or by using specialized software that will do it for you.
By using a graphic design contract, you’ll be conveniently categorizing all the services you offer. This will save you a lot of time and trouble when dealing with every client. So the next obvious step is to start pricing. Then after that, you’ll finally be ready to get busy earning! (but if you need a bit more help, here you can find a few more tips to get you started on the right foot)
What’s on your price list? Feel free to share your thoughts down here!