Should you offer packages as a freelancer?

This is a question that often pops up in both the Freelance Lifestylers Facebook group and in coaching chats with new or established freelancers. So, I thought it might be useful to run through some of the pros and cons of offering packages to clients.

First of all, a quick definition of a package! A package is a pre-determined collection of services, at a fixed price (packages can be customised though with extra ‘bolt ons’). Some examples:

  • A social media manager may offer a package of 3 social networks, 5 posts a week, including a strategy call, content generation and graphics. Extras may include end of month reports or in person meetings.
  • A photographer may offer a half day branding photography session, with 100 photos and a 30 minute virtual session beforehand to discuss outfits, props and poses. Extras might include video footage or printed photos.
  • An accountant may offer an end of year accounts package, including self assessment submission. Extras may include support all year round or monthly accountability sessions.
  • A graphic designer may offer a package to design a logo, banner, social media buttons and email header. Extras may include printed products, ongoing social media graphics or Canva templates.

Many freelancers will have multiple packages, for example a bronze, silver or gold package to fit different budgets.

So, let’s dive into the pros and cons!

Pros of offering packages as a freelancer

  • Much easier to promote. You can easily share how you help clients, and give them a clear idea of what they’ll get.
  • It also makes it much easier for a client to choose the right package for them, or at least gives them a starting point.
  • It avoids a lot of awkward price chat. Potential clients can see at a glance if you’re in their budget.
  • Personally, I also think it builds on the know/like/trust factor if you share your packages and prices, more transparent
  • It also means you don’t feel that awful ‘ahhh I’m about to tell them my price’ feeling. They already have an idea from your packages! And you don’t then spend hours staring at a quote you’re having to put together
  • Packages move you away from offering a time for money model. Time for money is fine when you’re starting out, but as you get better and faster at your job, it means you effectively get penalised financially for doing the job quicker!
  • It also helps you budget better. For example, if you know you want to earn £2k this month, and you have a £500 package and an £1000 package, you know you’ll need to sell 4 x £500 ones, 2 x £1000 or a mix of both.
  • You’re not being compared with someone else’s hourly rate.

Cons of offering packages as a freelancer

  • A common complaint I hear about using packages, is that it’s not right for some freelancers. And that’s true! For example, I work with a few consultants and their projects range massively, so individual quotes makes sense for that.
  • You need to be strict with setting boundaries over what’s included in the package. ‘Can you just…’ tasks can add up.
  • Equally you might also have to deal with people haggling over certain things that are included.
  • You might have different prices for bigger clients and small businesses or non profits. Packages can make that difficult.

Ok, I am biased! Packages make it so much easier for clients to buy from you. Having to enquire to get a quote may filter out time-wasters, but it may also filter out a lot of potential clients too.

Do you have packages? If you want support creating your packages, book one of my power hours! Or check out the pricing workshop with Sally Farrant

Power hour and coaching

Pricing workshop