How to price your Virtual Assistant Services
1. Figure out your minimum hourly rate
How much do you need to make a living? Notice we said “make a living” and not just earn an income.
You could charge R25.00 per hour and earn some income, but will that help you pay your accounts?
Figure out how much you want to make, and start from there. In other words if you need to earn R200 per hour for x amount of hours to make a living and that should be your starting point.
However you must remember to take into account your overheads and taxes. Instead of R200 per hour, you might need to charge R250-R300 per hour to cover your business expenses and still get in that R200.
2. Hourly rate or packages?
There’s still a lot of debate amongst the various Virtual Assistants on this subject.
Basically a package means you set a flat fee for certain of your services. It could work to your advantage depending on the services you offer.
In some respects hourly rates work out more advantageous especially if a client adds extra tasks or makes changes to current tasks that require more time.
With an hourly rate, you can track your time and invoice for the amount of time you actually worked.
If you do go for packages, make sure you are very specific about what that includes. Don’t just offer Social Media Management without letting the client know exactly what you will be offering under SMM e.g. if it includes 1 Facebook post, 2 LinkedIn posts, 5 Tweets, etc. before signing the “dotted line”, make sure you and your client are clear on what the package covers.
3. Target audience and skills matter!
So you figured out your minimum hourly rate and whether or not you want to charge by the hour. Now comes the next step. Where will your clients be based? Where do you live? Are you focusing on local clients or strictly virtual? You may be wondering why this matters… If a client is local your hourly rate might be on the higher scale of the local market. Does this mean that you need to lower your rates? Not necessarily. Before you even consider lowering your rate look at your skills and experience. Do you have specialized skills that set you apart? If yes, then do research and check out what others, with similar skills to you, are charging.
IT’S NOT ALWAYS ABOUT MONEY…
You may also find that a client could offer other perks such as free training or opportunity to get exposure in an industry you want to be a part of which can all contribute to whether or not you adjust your rate. It won’t always be about earning money even though that is the ultimate goal.
Whatever you decide to charge, do not sell yourself short just to land a client. You’ll regret it the moment you find yourself earning less than you hoped for. When you set the bar low for yourself, you’ll find yourself busier and with less time available to take on the clients that are willing to pay you more.