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  #11  
Old 04-30-2012, 02:21 PM
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These are my thoughts on raising rates and prices in general.

Charge what you are worth. Simply put, if you believe that your services are worth more than the next guy and you have proven that, then raise your prices. When it comes to businesses, typically they understand. Even when it comes to residential customers, they typically understand and if you did a good job in the past, they are usually just happy that they can still call you.

That said, you should expect dropping your bottom 10% to 15% off your clientele base each time you raise your prices. But your prices should and will in most cases well over make up for those customers you lose.

Another thing to note is that depending on your rates, you will attract certain types of customers. If you are finding that many of your customers are constantly trying to get a whole lot of something for nothing, then you are not charging enough. If you are finding that most of your customer are not even blinking when you give them a quote, then you can probably raise your prices. If you are finding that half of them balk at the price and the other half do not, then you are probably in the sweet spot.

Finally, as a personal testimony. I started this business from my home charging the same prices as the shops around me. Within 6 months, I had to open an office. Since then I have had to move and expand about 6 times in the last 2.5 years and I am the most expensive shop in my area and we are busy. It can be nerve racking to raise your rates, but you will be amazed at how easy it is once you start doing it and how little impact it will make on your rate of business. In the end, you should be making more money doing less work and generating better clientele that will cause you less stress.

As mentioned before, expect to do this once every year or two. You may hit a ceiling, but I doubt it. The cost of living is constantly going up, thus so will our prices.

EDIT: One thing that helps when raising prices is to build creditably. For instance, we are the most highly and positively reviewed shop in our areas, so most people who find us because of those reviews, usually do business with us regardless of us being more expensive.
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Last edited by PCX; 04-30-2012 at 02:31 PM.
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  #12  
Old 04-30-2012, 02:29 PM
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Yes agree with PCX. I read somewhere raise your rates by 15% and lose 15% of your customers. That way you will do less work for around the same money which in turn gives you more time to work on your business.
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Old 05-01-2012, 03:00 AM
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I raised my rates yearly to match the growth of the company. I started out with res/small business here...

2007
Onsite $75 an hour
Remote no support at that time
Shop $80 an hour
(I will never forget my first onsite job, 2 hours $150 check, I was in heaven!)

In 2008 or so
Onsite $85 an hour
Remote $60
Shop $80 an hour

In 2009 or so
Onsite $85 an hour
Remote $70
Shop $80 an hour

In 2010
Onsite $105 an hour
Remote $75
Shop $80 an hour

In 2011
Onsite $125 an hour
Remote $99 an hour
Shop
$39 for diag
$59 for a half hour
$79 for 3/4 of an hour
$99 full hour

We took on more flat fee priced stuff for remote and shop, took away a lot of little petty timed stuff. Still under my competitors and making it happen. I think it's valuable to raise your rates when you are faster and know more about repairs. You lose money if you don't raise, imo.
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Old 05-01-2012, 10:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stsanford View Post
but I have come across competitors who charge an easy $100 per hour more and who are nearly dangerous.
That worries me that your rates are ridiculously low.
I'm 125/hour. About 2 years ago we went up from 100. We'll be going up again soon.

If some of your competition is charging more than 100/hour than you....how low are you? Unless you're saying some of your competition charge 200/hour.

I disagree about losing 10-15% each time you raise your rates. Or maybe that rings more true when you talk about home users...but since I've been through a lot of rate changes since doing business networks for a long time...I don't see that kind of shedding clients each rate increase.
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Old 05-01-2012, 01:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YeOldeStonecat View Post
That worries me that your rates are ridiculously low.
I'm 125/hour. About 2 years ago we went up from 100. We'll be going up again soon.

If some of your competition is charging more than 100/hour than you....how low are you? Unless you're saying some of your competition charge 200/hour.

I disagree about losing 10-15% each time you raise your rates. Or maybe that rings more true when you talk about home users...but since I've been through a lot of rate changes since doing business networks for a long time...I don't see that kind of shedding clients each rate increase.
Yeah, the 10-15% loss is more or less for residential customers I would assume. I imagine that as soon as a business finds a good tech or IT support that they like, they are going to keep them around even with raised rates. That said, I think its more or less a concept to mentally prepare you. I have no way of tracking if I am losing my bottom 10-15% but it seems that I am not. I also believe that the 10-15% also included the bottom percentage of the potential customers you may have gotten with lower rates.
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  #16  
Old 05-01-2012, 05:24 PM
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Yup....Business clients tend to stick with their support peeps for the long run. A business network can be complicated....it is not easy to change IT vendors nilly willy on the fly at some frequent interval.

Home users..they can change their support people on a daily basis without much downtime and needing to get someone familiar with their system.
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