Agency rates?
Thread poster: xyz abc
xyz abc
Local time: 08:12
French to English
+ ...
Feb 12, 2002

Is there a standard formula to calculate average agency rates in relation to one\'s usual rate?

For example, if I charge 0.12 USD per word to direct clients, how much should I charge to translation agencies that offer me work?

This rate should be lower, because the agency will be doing the advertising and finding work for me, but how much should I take off?

Another way of asking this question:

How many hours of marketing/advertising does an independent translator typically do for every hour of actual translation? This ratio should be the same one used to calculate my agency rate from my usual rate.


Christian Richard

French-English Translator

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Bertha S. Deffenbaugh  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 06:12
English to Spanish
+ ...
Feb 13, 2002


This rate should be lower, because the agency will be doing the advertising and finding work for me, but how much should I take off?


_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Though I prefer to work for agencies, I have some direct clients. Last week I charged USD 0.15/ word to a direct client and the same week I charged USD$ 0.10 to an excellent agency that is always sending me jobs.At times, I have also charged USD 0.12 to USD 0.13 per word to the same agency.

Both client and agency are here in the U.S.A.



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Werner George Patels, M.A., C.Tran.(ATIO)
Local time: 09:12
German to English
+ ...
I agree with Bertha Feb 13, 2002

Hello, fellow Sympatico subscriber:

Yes, Bertha is right.

Also, you should look at the websites of agencies. Some of them post their rates there, and you will be able to calculate your own rate in relation to theirs.

Reliable agencies in North America and Western Europe usually pay about US$0.10 per word.

In Canada, in particular, you\'ll find agencies willing to pay US$0.12 per word (because they charge their clients about US$0.20-0.25 per word anyway).

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Glyn Haggett  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:12
German to English
Agency rates Feb 13, 2002

I think you should expect to reduce your standard rate by approx. 15-20% for agencies.

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Kevin Fulton  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 09:12
German to English
Take a different perspective Feb 15, 2002

The question was how one should set an agency rate in relation to the rate for a direct client. I might suggest that these have little to do with one another. Perhaps one should set one\'s *direct client* rate in relation to what an agency charges *its* clients. For example, if an agency charges USD 25.00/100 words, you could set your rate as a percentage of that figure. The advantages of this are manifold: (1) potential increase of your rate (2) room for negotiation in the event of bigger, long-term jobs (3) enough margin in your fee to pay a decent rate to your proofreader.

Kevin Fulton

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