Charging for direct client
Thread poster: Julie FOLTZ

Local time: 00:12
English to French
+ ...
May 19, 2006

When you charge 26€ per hour for proofreading for an agency what would you charge for a direct client ? in fact how much or what % do you apply ?


Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:12
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
A few references from the web May 19, 2006

Julie BEILLE wrote:
In fact how much or what % do you apply?

I had always thought the markup was standard at 30%.

According to the markup in the industry is generally 25%.

According to gu8A5.2697$ (on sci.lang.translation), the markup of one agency was 20%.

One agency on Lantra-L (Item #21089) said that their markup was 33%, which was the absolute minimum they could get by on. This followed a discussion about another agency who charged 200% markup.

Your comments?


Alex Lilo
Local time: 01:12
English to Russian
+ ...
200% markup?!!!!! May 19, 2006

In Odessa, Ukraine, the markup is usually 50-60% on "written" translation and 30% on oral.
Will be interesting to see what the others say?


df49f (X)
Local time: 00:12
agency markup May 19, 2006

hi Julie
If you're in France like me, you can bet that the agency who pays you 26 euro probably charges at least 50...
The one agency I accept to work for pays me 40€/hr and probably charges 60.
Cheapo cut-rate agencies in France who pay translators 5 or 6 eurocents for translations sourced in low-cost countries (or unfortunately even in Franceicon_frown.gif ) probably charge around 12/14 €cent (ie 100% markup at least).
(when I outsource, I never pay colleagues less than 14 €cent if I do the proofreading myself, more often 15/16, and up to 18, and with a recent 25 - but then I am not an agency!)
For direct clients, I never charge less than 60€/hr for proofreading/revision.


Eleftherios Kritikakis  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 17:12
Member (2003)
Greek to English
+ ...
Interesting... May 19, 2006

The price and agency sells a translation is not much different than what is was 10 years ago. For European languages I would say at around $0.20 - $0.25 per word. In rare cases, the client has a very low budget and the price may fall (all the way to even 10 cents) but as I said, rarely. (10 years ago, translators were paid "usually" at 12-16 cents per word).

Dear Samuel,

There is no "standard markup". Any agency will try to sell at the highest price and buy at the lowest. The same applies in any other profession and sale of goods and services in our world...
However, some agencies will ADD their expenses (including the translator's fee) to the price, and then come up with the 25%. No agency could ever survive with 25% unless the expenses were already paid... The "usual markup" in well organized mid-size agencies is anywhere from 50-100%. And it's not unreasonable at all. Even 200% is ok. Why not? They fist sell the product at a specific price (let's say $100) and then they "fish" for the cheapest translators. The cheaper the translator, the higher the profit.
How do I know? I have worked inside agencies... and to tell you the truth, the highest their prices, the more "margin" we have for our services. Thus, expensive agencies are good for us and the industry...

Now, as far as the statistics you' re getting on the internet. Similar statistics (in Acquarius for example) say that the average price for Greek is $0.12-$0.14/word. In reality, it's anywhere from $0.04-$0.12 (most jobs sold at $0.10, but in Greece at $0.03). I wouldn't pay much attention to such "statistics". People report whatever they like there...


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