Show me your damn pricing

When customers search for a new service provider, they have several criteria to find the best solution. One of the main criteria for that selection is of course pricing. Setting the right price his something quite complex. It might need some expert advice and A/B testing. But let’s say you have already completed that step. Well done! How do you present your pricing options to your prospects? Should they ask you for a proposal? Do you have a price list that you send after request? Do you show your prices on your website? There are several approaches, but plenty of them are just a big loss of time for the prospect. 

Let’s take for example the proposal. Before the customer gets the information he wants to know, he has to go through a lot of steps. Take contact. Write a briefing. Respond to question. Read the offer. Maybe ask for more information because he just don’t get it. And finally he knows that you are just way too expensive for him. Great. He just lost about an hour for nothing. And he has to start again with someone else. Sure, I understand that such an approach is amazing to collect data about prospects. You can then send them newsletters (to which they never subscribed). Send them congratulations message for any dumb reason. Yeah, that could work. More seriously, this kind of lead generation sucks for the customer. So your customer experience sucks. To solve this problem let’s write down a simple rule.

Stop asking customers to contact you when you could just put a figure somewhere.

How can you present your pricing in a way that enhance the customer experience? Here are two approaches.

Show it

The «straightforward» approach

Whatever we well understand we express clearly, and words flow with ease. — Nicolas Boileau

As the poets say, when it’s something is clear for you, it should be clear to others too. That is the poetic way to summarize the first approach to presenting pricing. Just show your prices, as they are. Don’t ask people anything in return. They get the information they search. And as a company you don’t need to invest time and money in writing offers that won't convert. This approach works especially well when you sell products. Some people may say that it is not well suited for service providers. But you know what? Most of the web services you find today have a simple monthly subscription. They have different plans for different needs. That’s it. The web industry can sell their services. So, why couldn’t other services and consultancy do it? I honestly think that it is usually laziness. 

Give a hint

The «don’t ask us» below that figure approach 

Other people may say that it’s hard to display a price for consultancies. Because the services are custom made to each client. That’s half true because most consultancies have an hourly rate. And that’s a pricing. Maybe not the most precise, but still it gives you already an idea. Is the hourly rate 175 or more something like 700 bucks? Don’t have an hourly rate? You certainly have price ranges. Most consultancies don’t work for less than an a certain amount of money. You can display this. A good practice for complex pricing is to display the different budget ranges. Do this when people want to ask information about the service price. That shows to people if they have at least the smallest budget to get the minimal service.

Nota Benne 

Luxury industry

To me, there is only one case where you shouldn't show clearly your pricing shouldn’t. It’s for the luxury industry and high premium services. Such services and products need to maintain an aura full of mystery. It's like in expensive restaurants where you don’t see the price of the dishes on the menu. Here not showing the price is part of the customer experience. It’s done on purpose to enhance the value of the service and add prestige to it. 

If you aren’t in the luxury industry, show your damn price, or at least, give your customers a hint.