Does asking for a low rate today lock me into that rate long-term?

I’ve gotten several fantastic “bootstrapping into freelancing for the first time” questions from a few list members recently.

Here’s one about the fear of getting locked into a low rate:


Now the fear I’m facing is if I start with 10$ an hour(freelance websites ask for an hourly rate) won’t it ruin my plans to switch for bigger price and for value pricing? Because if I ask for 30$-60$ after some time won’t clients say: “you charged that guy for 10$ yesterday and you want me to pay you 30$?”.

If you find ways to add value, clients usually won’t have this kind of objection. You can add value in several ways:

  1. Complete the work or achieve the project goal faster
  2. Reduce risk to your client
  3. Be easier for your client to work with
  4. Propose and build ​something that benefits their business *more* than what they originally thought was possible
  5. Provide better advice to your client during the project
  6. Say no to bad ideas that your client doesn’t know are bad ideas
  7. Provide the client with additional resources they need but don’t have access to themselves
  8. Help your client spend money more wisely

There are more ways to add value, but those 8 are a good start.

Adding value in the ways I listed above depend on two things: 1) narrowing your focus to serve a single, specific market vertical or audience 2) being genuinely curious about your clients’ business and how you can improve the results they care about.


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