Unit price negotiation
Thread poster: Rintaro Ito

Rintaro Ito  Identity Verified
Local time: 05:18
Member (2013)
English to Japanese
Jun 30, 2014

Dear all,

How do you all achieve agreement on unit price with clients?

Do you negotiate, or get your asserted unit price through?

I ask you all on this, for, I frequently have an issue on this.
My unit price is set below the average of most of translators here, I guess.

My combination is ENG -> JP

Kind regards


Thayenga  Identity Verified
Local time: 21:18
Member (2009)
English to German
+ ...
Negotiation Jun 30, 2014

Hi altair45,

when you bid on a job you first state your set price, either per word, line of per page. Or, in your case, per "sign"/character. You are the service provider, therefore, you are the one to state your rate, whether it's average or below or above average rates. That's entirely up to you.

There is, of course, always room for negotiations, especially if you really want a particular job. Either the client accepts your rate or s/he doesn't.



Nikki Scott-Despaigne  Identity Verified
Local time: 21:18
French to English
Offering services Jun 30, 2014

As a service provider, we can state the price for which we are willing/able to do a particular job. There is room for manoeuvre, but you know the price at which the job is not worth doing. Only you can determine that point for yourself. You cannot force the client to accept your offer. You may get a couple of requests for quotes and not get the job then state your normal rate and have four jobs one after the other where the client does not question your rate at all.
When you are in the position of purchasing a product or services, you make a choice as a customer. Clients seeking translation services give consideration to a numebr of things. You cannot get every single contract going!

When I say "able" to accept, there is a cut-off rate below which you will lose money on a job. There are rare instances where it may be possible/necessary to take a long term view and work for that rate. However, it's not generally a good idea. When you accept a job at a rotten rate, there is usually a good one at a good rate you will have to refuse as you are no longer available. And if you are running a business, you cannot afford that type of reret too often, nor too long!

[Edited at 2014-06-30 12:07 GMT]


LilianNekipelov  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 15:18
Russian to English
+ ...
Yes, absolutely. The` translator sets up the rate, just like Jun 30, 2014

the people in other professions do--butchers, lawyers, dentists, and if the client cannot afford it, they either look for someone cheaper or cut a part of the text to reduce the number of words, or take a loan form their local bank to be able to pay for the translation. Credit cards are good, too.

Predatory clients--including agencies--are bad for the economy, in addition to being unethical. Then, the government has to be helping the underpaid people, instead of using the money for more urgent things.

[Edited at 2014-06-30 12:13 GMT]


Prima Vista
Russian Federation
Local time: 01:18
Russian to English
+ ...
statistics Jul 29, 2014

Is there any statistics for the rates? I am interested in to/from Russian language pairs. It seems to me that the rates that are offered now for these languages are really diverse and there's lot's of unreasonable dumping. And I wonder, can I see other's rates (bids) or is this a hidden private information?


Katalin Horváth McClure  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 15:18
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
Bids are not visible Jul 31, 2014

If I understand your question correctly, Prima Vista, you wish to see others' bids on job postings here.
That, you can't do.
As to individuals' rates, that depends on the individual. Some people publish their rates in their profiles, some don't.
But frankly, I am a bit confused by your question, as you are an agency established in 1999, have 50-100 employees - at least this is what your profile says - so you should have a pretty good idea about the market.

You also said: "there's lot's of unreasonable dumping".
I guess I agree with that.
For example, stuff like this can be easily classified as dumping:
"We hope that you will be pleasantly surprised by our prices. You will find that, despite our high standards of work, the prices are significantly lower than our competitors.
Our prices range from 0.02 to 0.06 Euros per word"...

By the way, this is from your "resume".

[Edited at 2014-07-31 00:45 GMT]


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Unit price negotiation

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