This question is one I know so many new designers struggle with…when do you know the time is right to raise your prices?

I’m going to give you both some insight from my own business and others designers I’ve chatted with to help answer this question today.

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Okay, first things first.

If you’re pricing well under the industry average…

You and I both know, friend, that this is not serving you or your business.

Selling a custom website design for $500 is going to attract clients to you who are bargain-hunters. You’ll always find yourself in the awkward situation of your clients pushing for more than what they’ve actually paid for. Scope creep is a real problem with very low priced services.

And what happens when a client keeps asking for more without paying for the value you’re giving? You end up resenting both them and your business.

I want you to love your business and the clients you serve.

If you’re undercharging significantly from what the industry average is, I’m going to challenge you to raise your prices to be a happy mix between the industry average and the skill you bring to your work.

When do you need to make this change? Today.

Yes, friend, I want you to head to your website or your pricing guide and change those prices right away. Don’t drag your heels on this one, just get it done.

Raising your prices over time

Okay, so if you’re currently pricing reasonable rates that are the norm in your industry and you’re wondering when do you change them, these tips are for you.

1. know that this is your business and you set the rules.

When I was encouraged by a friend to double – yes, double – my prices (here’s the story on how that went) – only then did the wheels get turning in my mind that maybe I was allowed to do so.

Normally income increases (which is what a price increase in your business ends up being), comes from outside ourselves. Our boss or company compensation structure determines how much we make. So it’s a very odd and unusual freedom to be able to set these rules yourself.

Only once that friend told me to double my rates did I feel I had the permission to do so. I want you to know that you can give yourself that same permission. In fact, waiting for someone outside yourself to give you that permission might mean you’ll be waiting a longgg time.

2. Raise your rates as your skills increase

Out of all the ‘raising-rates’ methodologies I’ve heard about, this is the one that felt the best in my gut. A very successful designer friend told me that every 5 clients, she would raise her rates by $500.

Now the number of clients and the amount are really arbitrary, I’ll let you decide what those should be for your business. But I think the general thought process is a good one.

Her thought process was that with every project she completed, she gained skills and knowledge that helped her provide a better product to her clients.

It took the guessing game out of when and by how much she should change them, and stopped herself from dragging her feet for whatever reason, because she had decided upon a certain system.

There you go! That’s my favorite strategy I’ve seen so far! Best of luck with raising those rates!

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When to raise your prices as a Squarespace website designer