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How to Negotiate a Project Budget as Freelancer like a Pro

As a freelancer, negotiating rate with your client especially the clients with low budget can be very challenging. The freelancing industry is growing day by day and as a freelancer where you are trying your luck hard with gigs and contracts, negotiating the rate matters a lot. You can give a strong boost to your career and earnings by finalizing your rate according to your desire. Thus, if you are new to the freelancing industry then this article will help you to understand how to approach your potential client and seal the deal.

Set the lowest rate

The most important thing before negotiation anything about the project is that you must set a minimum rate for yourself. You must be sure that you will not be able to do the project below the minimum rate you have set. This will help you to set a foundation for your negotiation procedure. After setting your minimum rate, it’s time for you to consider whether you want to work on hourly basis or project basis. This will be the first step towards getting the things done.

Do a thorough research about client

We recommend you to do a good background research about your potential client before starting your job with them. You have to make sure that you are not working with someone who cannot pay you on time or who does not have enough money in the bank before the start of the project. Take a thorough look at his profile and ask your friends if they know anything about this client.

Educating your client is important

You can ask for a higher rate straightaway but it is possible that the client will not pay you according to your desire. Try to give a reason to your client to pay you more. Most clients think the rate is too high because they are not fully aware of the complexity of their projects.  Clarify things for them and educate them after doing a good research about the project. Explain the major points of the project with your client and explain how the project can be done and why you are a suitable option. This will not only build a strong foundation for a business relationship but it might help you to get a better rate.

Try not to give a number

While talking to you, the client will often ask you “how much would you charge for the job?” This question can be tricky and most freelancers get confused while answering to this. At one side you do not want to come up with a number that is too easy for the client and on the other side you do not want to scare away the client by asking a very high number.

Approach this situation by asking the client’s budget for the project and how much they are willing to pay. In response to this, the client might give you a low or a high rate but most probably he will offer a flat rate. This number might be bigger than you had in your mind.

Inspect your opportunities and client

Sometimes a client offers a rate upfront. If the rate is extensively lower than your expectation then it is a clear proof that client is not offering the right number because he lacks sufficient budget. In that case, you must consider whether the project is offering you enough to make your ends meet or not.

It is important to reconsider your options and leave the client if he or she is not offering you the right salary for your services.

Sign a contract with your client

After going through all the required negation steps, it is time for you to sign a contract. If the client is willing to hire you then he will say that he will get back to you. In order to overcome this hurdle you can follow these two simple steps:

  1. When you are meeting your client in person then please have a copy of your contract ready and ask him to sign the contract. If he is really willing to work with you then he will sign it in no time.
  2. If you are communicating with your client through emails, then make sure you give them a deadline to hear back from them because you have other responsibilities and clients.

As a freelancer it is solely up to you to decide your worth. Negotiating your rate is a very important business strategy. Try to use different negotiation techniques with your potential clients and with experience you will be able to become a successful freelancer.

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