One of the hardest things to figure out is how to price yourself and what jobs to take. It took me months to figure out my prices when I started and way longer to figure out my standards when it came to online work.
Which Jobs to Take
I get offered at least one staff writing position every couple of weeks, but I have a minimum that I will accept that helps weed out low ball offers. I also am asked if I perform blog tasks like submitting to carnivals, but since I don’t enjoy that part of blogging either, I refer the carnival submitters that I know instead. In short, I have come up with a few ways to determine which jobs to take.
Keeping that in mind, it is still hard to turn down money. I like money enough that I sometimes really consider doing jobs I don’t even like. Then I take a step back, look at whether I actually need the money or not, take a deep breath, and refer someone else. But it is sooooo hard sometimes.
The first trick is figuring out how much you are worth per hour or task. When I first started, I was making about $16 an hour at my day job before taxes and whatnot, so I was writing and doing freelance tasks for about $15 an hour. Then I realized my writing was being recognized and I was undervaluing my services. Over time, I inch my way up. If I am ever turned down more than twice in a row, I know I’ve gone too high on my hourly rate. I also use that same method with advertising. I slowly raise my prices until they are turned down more than a couple of times in a row. It is all a balancing act.
If you are unsure of how to start, consider contacting someone else in the field. I zoom in on every comment about pricing that I can find in the Yakezie, the blogging forum I love, and on other sites to make sure I am priced around the same rates as others. When I first started blogging, simply being pointed in a general direction was amazing since I was like a fish out of water. I had no idea what a normal rate was and was intimidated by the simplest decisions.
My Beginner Rates and Current Rates
In case any of you feel the same way, here are the rates I started at with myself and my main site, Budgeting in the Fun Stuff. Please keep in mind that these are the rates I had just a couple of months after I started blogging and working online, so my site was still a PR0 with less than 50 readers a day and I was a complete online newbie myself:
- My Hourly Rate for Freelance Tasks – $15
- The rate I would accept for a sidebar ad – $35 a month and up depending on location
- The rate for a sponsored post with a link for one year – $45-$60
- The amount I was making with Adsense – Less than $1 a month
Here are the general rates I use now. Budgeting in the Fun Stuff is now a PR3 with 400-600 readers a day and I have 18 months of online experience under my belt:
- My Hourly Rate for Freelance Tasks – $20-$30 depending on the assignment
- The rate I would accept for a sidebar ad – $50 a month minimum for annual placement in a low location, $60 minimum for 6 months or less in a low position, $80-$150 minimum a month for prime locations
- Sponsored post for one link for one year - $85 minimum for group deals and I usually expect $100-$125
- Adsense – $50-$100 a month
For those who have more experience, do those rates seem too low? Any suggestions? For the newer bloggers, feel free to email me with any questions at budgetingfunstuff *at* gmail *dot* com.