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Did you ever start offering your services online, hoping to earn tons of cash?
Do you regularly deal with clients that haggle more, pay less, and never seem to be satisfied with your services?
After a while our daily struggles to get more clients, earn more money and just make a living weigh down on us, crushing our hopes and dreams.
But there are some easy solutions to this problem that you could implement today!
So in this post I am going to share with you five strategies that you can use to turn your online services business around.
But first, relax, take a deep breath and get ready to change your life!
If you are only getting clients that pay too little and expect you to deliver more, then maybe you’re targeting the wrong types of clients.
You need start by considering what clients have at the moment and then re-evaluating who you’re providing services to.
For example: If your target audience is of small businesses and solo professionals, then it might be very difficult to secure clients that pay you very high rates.
Identifying your ideal customer is the key. Small business may not be able to pay $1000 every month for ongoing services (like SEO or Social Media).
One way to earn more is to target big corporations or larger organizations that are willing to spend more and also don’t expect the world in return.
Yet why would the big firms hire you?
It’s true that most big companies have dedicated teams working for them. And often they don’t need the services of outside experts.
However, there are a wide range of businesses that do seek outside services when they have a specific need. Examples could include companies that :
and a whole range of other reasons.
So if you clients are too poor to afford your services, have a think about targeting some bigger fish!
Now you are sure you are targeting the right kind of clients.
These are the clients that are able and willing to pay more for your services, but are not doing so. At least not to you.
If this is the case, then you may need to consider the “scope” of projects you’re working on.
For instance, the client only hired you for copywriting services and relies on someone else to improve their website’s ranking in Google.
In these kinds of cases, it pays to have a range of complementary skills to offer a client so that you can “extend” a project’s scope and earn more money. It can also help when bidding for projects too. More skills, more helpful, more projects!
But when you are extending your skills into a new area, take the following into account:
Positive customer reviews/testimonials could be a stand-alone marketing tactic. Consulting.com has amassed more than 3000 positive video customer reviews in one page and that page has a huge impact on their conversions.
If you don’t have any examples or experience, consider starting for free (or cheap) until you have a portfolio of clients or experience to draw from.
Soon enough, you will see your income rising and your range of skills increasing too.
The first rule for success in offering any service is: do what you do best.
In your scramble to attract more and more customers, did you bite off more than you could chew? Or just lose focus?
If you are trying to offer services to everyone under the sun then, you’re doing it wrong.
What you have to do is think about how many of your competitors can offer the exact same services as you.
If the answer is ‘most of them’, then you need a change of plan.
Narrow your niche or specialize. That is the key (despite it not being obvious)
Focus on offering unique services that none of your other competitors can.
According to Josh Garofalo,Small businesses do have money. They just hang onto it a little tighter. You need to provide unique value that they can't find anywhere else.Click To Tweet
Promote your unique offer in such a way that your clients won’t hesitate spending $1000 for your content marketing strategy (or whatever it is that you offer).
A concrete example:you’re an engineering major turned SEO expert. Although you can offer a wide range of SEO services to all kinds of clients, you’re still not able to secure clients.
What should you do?
You have to narrow down your target audience and the range of services you offer.
Why not offer SEO services to firms that are hoping to secure mining contracts?
You’re an engineering expert.
You can do better than most of other SEO specialists, in this field. Why should the clients not prefer you over others?
Below is just such a company that offers SEO services specifically for the engineering sector:
You won’t believe how many low-paying clients you can get avoid if you just display your minimum rates on your website.
A minimum project price is exactly what it sounds like: the minimum amount of money you’re willing to accept for a project.
You absolutely have to display your project minimum or the monthly retainer on your services and contact page if you want to earn more money.
Furthermore, if you want to earn more than say $1000 per month on one client, you have to stop accepting clients that pay less than that.
Your project minimum disclaimer can act as a filter to keep the undesired clients (aka time-wasters) out so you can deal with only the kind of clients you prefer and need.
Not only that, but once you start working with the right kinds of clients (aka higher paying ones) then your life will become easier too.
Higher paying clients are usually less demanding and more understanding of running a business.
Example of a Pricing Scheme:
If you offer SEO services, your price plans could look like this (what is in each service, and the price):
If you are new and cannot set the project minimum as high, don’t worry.
Work your way up.
Build a reputation and demand.
Then, when you reach the point that you feel you’re comfortable with such a price hike, don’t hesitate to raise your rates.
For more guidance, refer to what Sir Richard Branson has to say about building a small venture from the ground up. His advice is definitely worth reading.
Be upfront with the client before you start a project.
You can even make a list of tangible services that you would offer in exchange for a certain amount of money.
For instance, you might say that you will offer ten email opt-in ideas for a fixed sum of money.
That is a tangible goal – one you can measure easily. And, one where the client is sure of what they are getting.
If you offer a more fixed level of service at a set price (often referred to as productized services), it will have two advantages.
Firstly, it will define the client’s expectations regarding what you offer.
Second, you won’t need to go out of the way to accommodate any unreasonable demands of the client.
Why? Because the expectations and deliverables were state upfront!
Here’s an example of an SEO company providing several plans for specific services:
When you are rethinking your clients, your services, your prices and your business, it can seem a lot to get your head around.
Instead of making it more complex than it needs to be just remember to be specific about:
So, if you want to earn more with your online services, or just get more clients, start with one of the above (the most relevant to your business right now). Then once you improve that, move on to the next one.
One step at a time.
Do you wish you could charge more for your services?
Let us know your struggles in the comments below.
Bill Achola is a phenomenal blogger specializing in content writing and marketing at Billacholla.com. He works closely with B2B and B2C companies providing the right content that generates social shares, comments, and traffic back to their business blogs.