Short Take: Consulting Service Pricing Strategies

Kathy Burns-Millyard

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There are a variety of ways for consultants to price their services. This is a quick summary of various methods with explanations, pros and cons. How do you price your services?


It is common for many consultants to charge hourly for their services. This may be due to habit - you were likely paid hourly as an employee. It also easier to come up with a specific dollar number for each hour that you work.


Some consultants will skip the hourly fees and simply charge on a daily basis instead. There is even an entire formula designed to help you figure out what should be charged in order to meet your income and personal goals.

Task Basis

Some consultants will break the project into tasks and charge for each of those. A web designer may charge $50 per created web page, $75 for each custom graphic and so on. Programmers sometimes do this as well. Quotes are given to the client in either itemized task format or complete project format. The complete project price will be a total of each expected task.

Project Basis

This is where things can get complicated. Charging on a per project basis means that you will receive a flat fee regardless of how long the project takes. I find it interesting that most consultants will create their flat project fee based on either estimated time or estimated tasks performed.

Another way to price based on project is to look at the particular end value that you will bring to your client. If your skills, expertise and advice create a one million dollar revenue increase for the client within 3 months, should it really matter whether it took you 20 hours or 20 days to complete your project? If the end result for the client will be the same, the client should pay for those results instead of the time it took you to produce the results.

How do you prefer to price your services? Tell us your thoughts on pricing strategies and we may publish your comments!

© 2001, Kathy Burns. This article is provided courtesy of Electronic Perceptions Promotions - You may freely reprint this article on your website or in your newsletter provided this courtesy notice and the author name and URL remain intact.


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