Mobile menu

When do you first talk about your rates?
Thread poster: Julia Kasper

Julia Kasper
United Kingdom
Local time: 06:49
English to German
Sep 18, 2003

I am sending out lots and lots of application to agencies for freelance work. But I never quote any rates. I wonder if this might put them off. How does it work for you. The other thing that irritates me are some of those online-forms where you are asked for your rate. I thougt a rate should depend on the type of text I translate. But if they asked me for just one rate, I can't really address this. So either I quote them the minimum or the maximum, which is unsatisfying in both way? Any Idea, how to handle rates?

Julia


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Giuliana Buscaglione  Identity Verified
Austria
Local time: 07:49
Member (2001)
German to Italian
+ ...
I always quote my rates Sep 18, 2003

Hi Julia,

I don't think is a good idea not to quote your rates, as this means that the receiver should send you an extra mail and ask you to.

I have a ready general scheme with a variety of rates according to the job, quantity, difficulty, required services, etc. There can be something extremely specific requiring a rate adjustment, but IMHO we should have a general line to start from, a general indication for the agency. Sometimes I get contacted by a new agency for a potential cooperation (no specific job with pre-defined requirements). In this case, they get from me the whole rate range.

The point *Rates* comes after *previous experience* in my mails.

Giuliana


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Giles Watson  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 07:49
Italian to English
It depends ... Sep 18, 2003

[quote]Julia Kasper wrote:

I thougt a rate should depend on the type of text I translate.

Hello Julia,

Not quite.

Unless you are aiming for one-off customers, which are always a credit risk, the rate will depend in the long run on *how well* you translate a given type of text with respect to other translators.

In general terms, you can sell on price, product, service or a combination of the three. For example, when you are starting out, you may be willing to translate just about anything, at low rates and short notice, simply to secure work.

If this is your case, and you are cold calling, it's probably a good idea to quote a lowish rate, prominently, along with your speed, reliability, qualifications and any areas of specialisation.

However, as you gain experience, you will also start to find your niche(s). Properly managed, your research will gradually turn into expertise that other translators may lack.

If/When you have solid, documentable sector-specific experience, it's probably better to foreground that information in your communication, discreetly quoting a top-end rate afterwards, as Giuliana suggests.

You'll get fewer responses, but they'll be from serious potential clients.

Remember, too, that it's easier to offer a discount than to charge a premium.

Cheers,

Giles


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Julia Kasper
United Kingdom
Local time: 06:49
English to German
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you. Sep 18, 2003

Thank you for your helpful answers. I think I need some courses on developing my business sense.

Julia


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Anthony Green  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 07:49
Italian to English
Don't we all?! Sep 19, 2003

One of the fun things about quoting for jobs on the net is that most of the time you get it wrong! The agency may be looking for a cheapo option. Very few are doing it in order to really screw the translator, but have often been unable to obtain a viable price from the end-client, as is the case for most (but not all) of the offers which I get from Italian agencies, most of which I really couldn't afford to get involved with.
And then of course there are always superior translators to oneself outside one's main speciality, and agencies will often go for them.
The interesting ones are in the middle, when I find myself for a variety of reasons accepting jobs for a figure that I refused the week before! When they accept, you always say to yourself "Why didn't I ask for more?" and when they refuse you always wonder whether you priced yourself out of the job!

Julia Kasper wrote:

Thank you for your helpful answers. I think I need some courses on developing my business sense.

Julia


Direct link Reply with quote
 


To report site rules violations or get help, contact a site moderator:


You can also contact site staff by submitting a support request »

When do you first talk about your rates?

Advanced search


Translation news





Protemos translation business management system
Create your account in minutes, and start working! 3-month trial for agencies, and free for freelancers!

The system lets you keep client/vendor database, with contacts and rates, manage projects and assign jobs to vendors, issue invoices, track payments, store and manage project files, generate business reports on turnover profit per client/manager etc.

More info »
TM-Town
Manage your TMs and Terms ... and boost your translation business

Are you ready for something fresh in the industry? TM-Town is a unique new site for you -- the freelance translator -- to store, manage and share translation memories (TMs) and glossaries...and potentially meet new clients on the basis of your prior work.

More info »



All of ProZ.com
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs