Packaging a Sharp Service, But without a Public Price

We’ve previously looked at sellable ways to package your skills as services.

Most of the examples we looked at are so approachable and straight-up buy-able, they’re almost like a product.

They’re great candidates to be packaged as a productized service: a fixed price and fixed scope:

  • Sell an exploratory phone call;
  • Sell access to a reading group on a book covering a new aspect of your practice;
  • Sell the re-write of a document, max 2000 words;
  • Sell the editing of the first 30 minutes of a podcast episode;
  • Sell a screencast explaining how to solve a specific problem in WordPress for $30;
  • Sell a 4-hour block of your focused attention for a week for $500 and $70 off if booked two weeks in advance;
  • Sell an email course condensing and summarizing your best articles or your best ideas so people could catch up;
  • Sell an ebook or a short guide;

When a Fixed Price Won’t Do

But for some of these other ones, having a fixed price and a fixed scope won’t do.

  • Sell a weekly recurring system clean-up service;
  • Sell a website loading speed increase;
  • Sell access to a popular system plus your support of that system and your training on that system for a recurring retainer fee;
  • Sell three on-site sessions to train your client’s team on a new approach;
  • Sell a facilitation session to help your client get unstuck, imagine possibilities and commit to next steps (include accountability follow-up calls);

You’re probably going to create custom proposals for each potential client, but you can still package them up.

You can still sell a sharp result, on a page that shows the visitor you understand the struggle and can help them make progress:

Start the page describing a hard struggle. Describe, in different ways and with vivid description, what they’re likely going through. If the visitor feels they’re in the right spot, they’ll scroll down.

For the rest of the page, tend to the forces of progress. In addition to showing you understand their struggle, show a new way forward, address anxieties, and recognize you’re in competition with them doing it themselves.

One of the anxieties the visitor will likely feel is related to the lack of a public price:

  • ←⚬ I don’t know if it’ll cost a lot of money, what he’s offering;

Compensating For the Absence of a Public Price

Here are some options you can do to address that anxiety. Remember, however, that the price is just one of the anxieties, and a low price can contribute to anxiety as well.

  1. Talk about the next steps: how you’ll provide custom options after taking stock of their situation;
  2. Consider giving pricing guidance: “our options start at $1,000” or “our services typically sell in the $5,000 to $25,000 range”, or “the first month of the retainer requires a $5,000 deposit to start”.
  3. If your services incur costs of external services that you depend on to do your work, such as recruiting costs and incentives for research participants, you can show how you’ll include options that include those costs.
  4. And, it goes without saying, but communicate that your service will provide some economic return, that it will have a measurable monetary impact for them. Increased revenues, decreased costs, increase in team morale, speeding up a transition, clarifying a vision or reducing some friction in an inefficient process. Those problems have an economic value, and your service can be seen as a bargain, even if the price is high.

Mix It in with Your Other Services

Even if your service page makes a great case, addresses anxieties, and helps the visitor learn to do it themselves, they’ll likely want to compare your offering against other options.

One way to do that is to make sure your service is part of a mix of services that you offer. Maybe your service will be the top rung of a value-ladder. If so, make sure that at the end of your page, you catch people hesitating to consider your other services to start.

That’ll end up making you compete, not against other freelancers, but against yourself.

Stay Sharp!


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