Should a Virtual Assistant post their rates on their website?

Guest vloggers Janet Barclay and Lanel Taylor answer the question, “Should I post my rates on my virtual assistant website?” They each take a side… let’s see what these seasoned VAs have to say…

Listen to these and then give your opinion in the comments…

First up, let’s talk about why you SHOULD… Janet Barclay from Organized Assistant and the founder of the Golden Horseshoe Virtual Assistants Group is here to answer the question, “Should I post my rates on my website?”

On the Cons side of posting your rates on your website… Lanel with Taylored Office Solutions

About Candy

My name is Candy and I own OffAssist. I've been a VA since February 2002 and work full time with my husband at it. We have been very successful and I am always being asked for just 2 minutes of my time. This is my way of giving everyone... "just 2 minutes of my time". Enjoy and please ask away!

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9 Responses to Should a Virtual Assistant post their rates on their website?

  1. Janet Barclay March 25, 2009 at 11:44 am #

    Candy, thanks so much for the opportunity to take part in this discussion (even though I sound like a little girl)!

    Lanel makes some excellent points, including some I had not previously considered, but I don’t think I’ll be removing my rates any time soon. :)

    Janet Barclay’s last blog post..Do you know what Jessica Knows?

  2. Tina Chase March 25, 2009 at 1:03 pm #

    I notice this question seems to come up every once in a while. I currently do not post my rates on my website. However, a while back I spoke at a networking event and someone asked this during the question and answer period. I did not feel comfortable quoting my rates in front of the whole group. Like Lanel, I prefer to get the opportunity to discuss each person’s situation with them so they hopefully won’t make a decision solely on price. In any case, later in the meeting, a fellow business woman offered some good advice which I think could provide a good compromise for this “debate”. She recommended rather than quoting specific rates, to quote a range and indicate that the rate will vary depending on the services. I think I may adopt this on my website eventually as well….

  3. Lorri Morin March 25, 2009 at 3:11 pm #

    Thanks for this ‘mini-debate’ in video form. I do not currently post my rates on my website and have always been against it because I want an opportunity to help a client understand the value of working with me prior to disclosing my rate. However, I am in the process of re-vamping my website and will be adding my rates. I am switching sides for several reasons: 1) I have a comprehensive client consultation process to ensure only the most ideal clients have a place in my practice. I don’t want to spend my time or theirs going through the process only to find out they cannot afford my fees; 2) One of the criteria I have for potential clients is that they must be able to easily afford my fees – if my rate is posted on my website, they will know if they can afford my fees before entering into a conversation with me.

  4. Ana Lucia Novak March 25, 2009 at 4:39 pm #

    Hi- This question gives me a mixed feeling on how to address this question. First of all, I would rather work with a client who sees my value and will not hesitate to pay my hourly rate whether it is listed on the web-site or not. In my experience, especially having worked in the high tech industry for the past 20 years, every department has a “budget” and even if someone did offer a higher hourly rate, there was always some type of negotiating that resulted in the contractor lowering their hourly rate just to win the business.
    I’ve worked with clients who agreed to my hourly rate only to ask me to lower it significantly because of non-paying clients which resulted in some financial hardship.
    Posting your rates on the web-site would attract the type of clients that will pay you for your services because they have the budget and will also value your expertise. On the other hand, not posting your rates would attract cheap paying clients and you’d find yourself spinning your wheels. I offer a range and explain that my charges differ depending on the type of services I offer, the hours expected and encourage them to go with one of my retainer packages. A prospect who wants to know your hourly rate BEFORE a consultation usually doesn’t understand what a VA is or does; may need to be given a gentle education before offering up a quote. It has been in my experience, that if a person just wants to know your hourly rate BEFORE learning who you are and discussing their business needs are the clients who want to pay very little and expect ALOT and they end up becoming what I call the “nightmare client”. I have learned to spot cheap paying clients because in the past, I would bend over backwards, and go beyond the call of duty, and they are quite pleased with my work,only to wait for months to get paid and/or to be asked to lower my rate significantly and hoping that I will work for almost free. You all know what the answer to that will be! :>)

  5. Caroline Wright March 25, 2009 at 5:01 pm #

    Interesting discussion and two very well presented arguments. I personally have listed my rates and not listed my rates at different times over the years. I think it comes down to the type of client that you are getting (do they have a general idea of what to expect in terms of VA costs?) and what you are most comfortable doing on the phone. I find the best leads usually come from referrals and they have already asked my client what I cost.

  6. Christy March 26, 2009 at 10:21 pm #

    I just finished my website, and I did not post my rates exactly for the reasons Lanel stated. However I really like Janet’s pricing structure. It’s sharp.

  7. Katie Bauer March 30, 2009 at 10:07 am #

    I can relate to so many of the comments that have been made. I often run into potential clients who ask about my rates first, and I do my best to start the discussion about their business goals and their needs before we get into rates. Educating clients on the true value and benefits of hiring a VA has been tricky for me. I can’t just come out with the comparison graph of hiring a VA vs a full-time employee with benefits – although there have been plenty of times that image has flashed through my mind! I do post my rates on my site, but what I post has changed several times. I used to have a rate structure based on hours and that got too difficult to manage because most of my clients have no idea how much they will need me at first and are not willing to commit to a number. So, now I post a base hourly rate for retainer clients. During my discussion I may mention that the actual rate can vary based upon the services needed, but since I’ve moved to a flat hourly rate, I’ve noticed the clients that I truly want to work with have no issues with my rate (and it’s actually a bit higher than it was when it was based on hours). So I agree with the comment above that the prospects who are focused on your rate and seem to want a lot for nothing are typically the clients you don’t want to work with anyway!


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