Knowing what to say when a client asks you to “do it cheaper” is becoming increasingly important in today’s competitive business landscape. Although it’s fair to say concerns about costs are becoming more significant in today’s economic environment, the demand for cheaper products and services is nothing new. Everyone wants to save money, no matter what they’re buying.
The trouble is, no matter which industry or market you’re involved with, the question “can you do it cheaper” can often lead to a lot of problems. Here’s what you need to know.
Why Clients Ask, “Can You Do It Cheaper?”
There are many reasons why a client might ask you to do something for a lower price than the quote you originally provided. Sometimes, they may not be fully aware of the value you’re offering with your product or service. Other times, they may be convinced they can get something similar from another provider, who charges less.
The most common reason for a client asking you to do something cheaper is simple: they have a specific budget they need to stick to. Your pricing strategy won’t necessarily appeal to every client or customer you approach. However, that doesn’t mean you’re pricing incorrectly.
Even if you work hard to choose a competitive price for your service or solution, based on in-depth market research, there’s always a chance someone will push their luck and ask you to charge less.
Should You Ever Just “Do it Cheaper”?
Unfortunately, however you respond, there can be consequences.
If you give in and provide a cheaper price to one client, you risk damaging your reputation and undermining the quality of your service or product. Plus, there’s a risk you could miss out on profit, particularly if other clients start demanding the same service.
Alternatively, if you stand your ground too aggressively, you could risk losing valuable customers. It’s easy to tell yourself earning a little money is better than earning none.
Ultimately, if you want to preserve your credibility, reputation, and profit, you need to stick to a consistent pricing structure. Standing your ground is sometimes essential for staying in business.
Best Responses when Your Client Asks if you Can Do it Cheaper
Ultimately, how you respond to your clients when they ask you to do something cheaper will depend on a few factors, including the relationship you have with that specific customer. Some customers will simply accept “no” as an answer, while others will want a more detailed explanation.
Here are just some of the ways you can effectively respond when your client asks you to do “do it cheaper”:
1. “Based on [your investment in the project or service], this is the cheapest price I can offer. I’m sorry if it’s out of your budget range.”
The first option is to simply stand your ground, and explain why you’ve chosen your pricing structure in the first place. You could expand on this respond with additional details. For instance, you might say, “the average price for someone with my experience and skill level is actually [price].” This can help to highlight the value you’re offering.
Show you’re simply asking to be paid what the service or product is worth, but also demonstrate empathy to your customer. If they’re unhappy with your price, you might be able suggest referring them to someone with less experience, or a product with fewer features.
2. “If your budget is [amount], I can’t offer the full solution, but here’s what I can provide for that price…”
One way to respond if your customer asks, “can you do it cheaper”, is to let them know that the price of the specific service or product they asked about is non-negotiable, but you may have other solutions you can offer that fits their price range.
For instance, a freelancer in the web design industry might not be able to build an entire website for a client for a specific price, but they might be able to customize a website theme, create a few pages, or design the website without adding content and other features.
This is a good way to show your customers they can still work with you, without forcing yourself to cut your costs. You may be able to use this statement to start some sales negotiations.
3. “My price range for this [product or service] is [amount to amount]. Here’s what you can expect depending on what you want to pay…”
Another good way to respond if a client asks you to do something cheaper, is with a price range, rather than a set price. You could consider sharing the type of price range you usually use for a project or solution with the scope the company or client is looking for.
A good way to make sure your customer makes the right decision when you respond this way, is to provide them with an insight into what they’ll get if they want to stick to the lower end of the price range, compared to what they’ll receive at the higher end.
This will give your customer an opportunity to decide whether they’re willing to compromise on certain things in order to get the solution for the price they choose.