I get it, nobody likes price increases, not ever.
I’ve been doing web site development for a long time now. Since 1998, actually. I didn’t really get professional about it until 2001, so I was mostly a hobbyist until then. Once people started offering to pay me to make their web sites, I started getting better at it. A lot better, actually. So, as my skills increased, so did my prices. I made my first web site for $5 for a friend as a favor. Then it was $50 for the next one. Then $150. Then $500. Then $1750.
Over the years after that, I steadily decreased my pricing to compete with other developers entering the scene. I could still never really compete on price with people based in India, so I shifted my focus on the internet as a whole and started focusing on local clients, along with Craigslist advertising. The problem with specializing strictly on local clients is that there are far fewer of them, and I just simply can not sustain myself on the few clients I see locally at the prices I have been charging. Something needed to change.
Effective today, I will no longer be offering my services at a strictly hourly rate, instead opting to offer packages that are predefined so as to state explicitly what you, the customer, receive for your money. The prices have been raised to be more in line with the caliber of web site that I produce. You are not only paying me for my time, but my expertise.
Why Not Charge Hourly?
Let me put it to you this way: If I charge you hourly, is that not an incentive for me to take longer on your web site? Alternatively, if I bill hourly, I am being punished for being efficient. Either way, one of us is being penalized.
It makes more sense that a web site be sold as a product, rather than a service. It is still custom tailored to client specifications, but there’s no more need for estimates, and no concerns when it comes to the invoice. Again, it’s not about my time, but the value of the product I am delivering.
But Why Charge More?
Simply put: because I’m really, really good at what I do. You’re paying for the best, and you’re getting the best. I’d rather focus less on staying within a specific time constraint, and focus more on obsessing over making your site perfect. You shouldn’t be focused on micromanaging me or your site at all. That’s my job. You should be running your business, as it’s what you do best.
About Previous Clients
It probably stings to come back looking for more, and find a higher price tag. I seriously love you all, and that’s why I will continue to offer my services to previous clients at a discounted rate, as thanks for the previous support.