I want to talk to you about how I set up my pricing. It’s different than most photographers, but I know there are some who do it SORT OF how I do it… but after being in business for over 9 years now… I have finally perfected how I structure my pricing.
The key for me is to make it simple. Really simple. Remember, a confused mind say NO, and we want our pricing to be easy for clients to understand, AND easy for you to remember and talk about
And because it is so simple, It does NOT take too much time to set up or to tweak here and there as you are figuring out your rates…
I remember when I would spend DAYS working on my price list,
figuring out how much my different labs cost to make all the things, albums, folio boxes, loose prints, matted prints etc… I wanted to give my clients any product they may want. My idea was that the more choice they had, the more they would buy….
Then I would combine products together and put them into packages that would entice people to buy… tweaking the numbers and moving things around constantly. Pricing everything individually … gah! It was so confusing. I tried a la carte, and I tried packages.
Then I would get people asking me to substitute different things and “if I don't want the wall art, can I add an extra photo instead? Or can I take just the digitals…”
You’ve been there, right? Maybe you are still there, with that thinking, and messing around over and over with your pricing, and having clients try and move things around to make the package suit them… then you have to try to figure out if that price worked for you and if you will make a profit,... and do all that on the fly, while still looking professional….
If this is where you are, you need to listen to this episode. This is going to change your life!! … ok, well maybe not your LIFE- but it’s really gonna help you make more sales AND save you so much time on researching prices and designing your price list… so it can change your BUSINESS.
Imagine how it will feel to be able to spout off your pricing without even looking at your list. Knowing you are giving your clients a good experience and selling them products that make sense to them, and have them thank you after they give you money.
This is what you want.
You want the clients to feel like what they purchased is worth it and has a value to them. You don’t want them walking away, confused about what they bought or wondering how they could get more and pay less by moving and substituting things around. Am I right?
If your pricing is a pain for you, if you are constantly tweaking and changing things around, then this episode is for you.
So let’s get right into shall we?
Now that we know what we DONT want to happen anymore, let's talk about how to fix it and make it easier.
All you have to do is sell by NUMBER of images, then everything else is an add on.
Seriously. That's it.
They pick the images they love and pay for them. It does not matter what format they want them in- they can have them in an album, or matted prints in a folio box, or high res digitals. It’s all the same price.
Yes, all the same price.
So I have completely eliminated the question “how much for just the digitals?” the answer is, it’s the same price.
Let me give you an example of how this will work;
You break down your images by a number of photos. So a price for 7 images, 14 images, 21 images, and 28 images… you could even add another level and go 35 images or you can just say anything over your highest package is xx dollars for any additional images above 28, or 35, or whatever your top-level is.
Then you just make those images cost less each, the more they buy. For example 7 images could be $1400 (so $200 each) and 14 images costs $2400 (which is around $171 each) 21 images is $3400 ( $162 each) and 28 images is $3900 ( $140 each)
Now if you are not ready to price that high, then go a bit lower, you could make the higher packages less per image, but I recommend making you lower package, or even you 2 lowest packages, much more per image. You want to make that package less attractive, or at least make it worth your while if they only choose the lowest amount.
When your client comes in to view their images (in person… PLEASE be doing your ordering session in person… if you are not doing that then you need to start right now… I've said it before, and I will say it again- switch to in-person sales! Do it now and you will see your sales increase, and once you try it you will never go back… remember how I said a confused mind says no? A great way to overwhelm your clients is to send them a bunch of images online and tell them to choose…
….do this part with them, they will appreciate your guidance and help with choosing- you are providing a luxury experience and it does not end after the shoot is done, stay with them till the very end and include their ordering session in their experience)
Alright, I went off again… can you tell I am passionate about in-person sales? I see a podcast episode in our future about that!
Back to pricing--- when you are with your client, reviewing their images, they can choose the number they want, based on your simple price list, then when you narrow the number down, then you will discuss HOW they want their images delivered to them.
Do they want them in an album, a folio box or digitally? Make sure your pricing covers the most expensive option for you to provide, obviously there is a bigger profit if they choose digitally, but don’t change things around for that…. Everything is the same price. Simple.
So there are no more “substitution requests” .. you know what I’m talking about, right? Where they want to add a larger print and take away one of the digital images and add some wallets instead of the 8x10… NONE OF THAT WILL HAPPEN ANYMORE. Trust me. This makes it all super easy
But what happens if your client chooses their images and they want them in an album AND they want them digitally…. Well, that is simple as well… this is when your add-on price list comes into play… they choose their number of images, get it in an album then ADD ON the digital images for a set price.
Price your images and everything else is an add on
Ideas for what you can include in your add on the list?
These are things that you can still offer in your pricing… but it does not really need to be introduced in detail until AFTER they choose their number of images at their reveal.
Showing them the add on the list before they even shoot or see their images will just confuse people and….?
A confused mind says no… remember that
At the pre-shoot consult, I just go over the number of images, and tell them they decide what they want to purchase at the time of their image reveal… I tell them they can add on digital images or album size at the time of their ordering, but they don’t need to have all those scenarios in their head before they make the decision to hire you. They just need to know the image pricing and a ballpark of what they will spend.
Remember, keep it simple.
So now all you need to do is find a lab that offers a beautiful album and folio box that you love and source out what that will cost you…. Or if you just want to offer one and not the other, do that…. Maybe you want to offer your prints in an album OR high res digitals, and that's it, no folio box option at all (this is what I have switched to recently… the only choice is an album and/or the digitals)
… or… another thought, you could have the upgrade to a folio box in your add on list… for me the folio box is more expensive from my lab, so that is a thought…
You could even charge those prices for high res digitals, and if they want an album, that is an upgrade on your add on the list as well… totally up to you…
Did that help? Do you see how making a price list super simple is the way to go? I hope this inspires you to rethink your pricing and maybe give yours a good make over….
All I want you to do is to keep your prices simple. Simple for you and simple for your clients.
If you give it a try, let me know what you think and how it goes…. Or reach out with questions.
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