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Poll: Have you ever offered a discount to keep a regular client?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff

ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 15:14
SITE STAFF
Jun 19

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Have you ever offered a discount to keep a regular client?".

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neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 00:14
Spanish to English
+ ...
Other Jun 19

Sort of. I recently managed to raise my rate for one long-standing client to the same basic rate as my other cheapest clients. I actually tried to get it up to my current standard rate for new clients, but it's a small and rather impecunious company and they protested and wheedled, so I made do with just this slight increase.

At the end of the day, it makes them more beholden to me, as they know I'm doing them a favour. I sometimes give random discounts to clients where I think it's
... See more
Sort of. I recently managed to raise my rate for one long-standing client to the same basic rate as my other cheapest clients. I actually tried to get it up to my current standard rate for new clients, but it's a small and rather impecunious company and they protested and wheedled, so I made do with just this slight increase.

At the end of the day, it makes them more beholden to me, as they know I'm doing them a favour. I sometimes give random discounts to clients where I think it's deserved, just to keep them sweet.
Collapse


 

Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 23:14
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Other Jun 19

I offer a variable discount at my discretion to only one client as a way of recognizing all the work that my longest-standing customer has been sending since 1990. Quite recently another client asked me if I could reduce the rate applied to one account (the client manages several accounts all related to the EU), after some negotiation I agreed but curiously enough the work they have been sending since has decreased dramatically. No worries though as I have plenty of work. Like Neil I give occasi... See more
I offer a variable discount at my discretion to only one client as a way of recognizing all the work that my longest-standing customer has been sending since 1990. Quite recently another client asked me if I could reduce the rate applied to one account (the client manages several accounts all related to the EU), after some negotiation I agreed but curiously enough the work they have been sending since has decreased dramatically. No worries though as I have plenty of work. Like Neil I give occasional discounts to clients where I think it's deserved.Collapse


 

Muriel Vasconcellos  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 15:14
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
No Jun 19

My longest and most important client approached me several years ago with a request to drop my rate by USD 0.04 a word for a large project. I refused.

The only way to keep rates from falling is to stand firm.


Helena Chavarria
Philip Lees
KateKaminski
ventnai
Jina Lee
writeaway
Anna Herbst
 

Lincoln Hui  Identity Verified
Hong Kong
Local time: 06:14
Member
Chinese to English
+ ...
Not to keep Jun 19

I've accepted a 1c/word discount with a client for a certain project. This is my third year on the same project and I've had 100k words from that project each year. My rates on other projects for the same client remain unchanged.

[Edited at 2019-06-19 09:47 GMT]


 

Kay Denney  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 00:14
Member (2018)
French to English
No Jun 19

My very first client, who pays my lowest rate, has several times tried to get me to accept a lower rate "just for this job" or "just for this end client". One end client being a very upmarket lingerie manufacturer, and in their press release they were boasting about better profits further to delocalisation, so I saw no reason whatsoever to lower my rate for them.

The client sulked for a bit and is now sending me loads of work again.


Gareth Callagy
Philippe Etienne
Melanie Meyer
Muriel Vasconcellos
neilmac
 

Steen Johnsen  Identity Verified
Denmark
Member
English to Danish
+ ...
It's a slippery slope Jun 19

No, because lowering the rate is a slippery slope and harms all of us.

Philip Lees
Muriel Vasconcellos
Rita Utt
Mr.Q
neilmac
 

Matthias Brombach  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 00:14
Member (2007)
Dutch to German
+ ...
Once I did ... Jun 19

... and soon the PM (one of the usual twenty-something kids with no translation experience at all) answered in such a patronising and cheeky way, that I immediately regretted my attempt. Of course it wasn´t followed by a resume of the usual job flow I had before with them (before I first raised my general word price and the associated subsequent decline of work after a couple of weeks).

[Bearbeitet am 2019-06-20 10:08 GMT]


 

Kevin Fulton  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 18:14
German to English
Dual rate structure Jun 19

Many years ago I had a client who was a consultant to the auto industry who dealt with the Detroit-area office of the company headquartered in Germany. He provided me with regular, well-paid work which included translating e-mail. At some juncture someone at HQ decided to put him on a general distribution list which increased his e-mail volume from 2-3/week to dozens. Since this was before Google Translate, he needed some relief from the increased expense, especially since most of the incoming ... See more
Many years ago I had a client who was a consultant to the auto industry who dealt with the Detroit-area office of the company headquartered in Germany. He provided me with regular, well-paid work which included translating e-mail. At some juncture someone at HQ decided to put him on a general distribution list which increased his e-mail volume from 2-3/week to dozens. Since this was before Google Translate, he needed some relief from the increased expense, especially since most of the incoming mail was utterly irrelevant (company outings, changes in plant restaurant hours, etc.). I offered him a low flat rate per e-mail, providing a 2-3 word summary. If he needed a full translation, then he paid full price.Collapse


 

DZiW
Ukraine
English to Russian
+ ...
Not that needy Jun 20

Why should I?
While occasionally I can also make small sweeteners and drawbacks within reasonable limits, I see no point in going under just to hold a person temporally: soon he will demand another concession.

 Something must be wrong, if we have been cooperating for awhile and suddenly he wants to leave me, not to mention a cheap deal is no good for me.

It's similar to such fallacies as
Business is risks.
 +
Translator is adventurer.
______________________________________________
Blindly signing contracts is doing good business properly.


 

Elizabeth Tamblin  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:14
Member (2012)
French to English
No Jun 20

I haven't offered, but I have agreed to a discount when asked by a good client, when a large number of words was involved.

 

Rita Utt  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 00:14
Member
English to German
+ ...
No Jun 20

I don't think we should accept.
If you do, prices will usually go spiralling downwards.


Thayenga
Maja_K
Anna Herbst
 

Thayenga  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 00:14
Member (2009)
English to German
+ ...
No Jun 20

When I started out as a translator I had once agreed to lower my rate by 1 cent/word. I think it was less than 2 or 3 months later when the client asked for another cent - it's only one cent. Of course I refused because I had a feeling that by the end of the year I might end up paying him to give me work, especially since my rate wasn't very high at that time. For some reason this wasn't exactly my idea of earning money as a translator.... See more
When I started out as a translator I had once agreed to lower my rate by 1 cent/word. I think it was less than 2 or 3 months later when the client asked for another cent - it's only one cent. Of course I refused because I had a feeling that by the end of the year I might end up paying him to give me work, especially since my rate wasn't very high at that time. For some reason this wasn't exactly my idea of earning money as a translator.Collapse


Maja_K
Rita Utt
 

Maxi Schwarz  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:14
German to English
+ ...
I've given a discount, but not for that reason Jun 21

On occasion I've encountered a client who was really in bad circumstances,and in that case I gave a discount. The idea of offering a discount in order to "keep" a client sounds like an ongoing thing from then on. Why would one want to do that?

Teresa Borges
 

Axelle Hawkins  Identity Verified
Member (2017)
English to French
No Jun 21

But it happens sometimes when my (best) customers need a tiny translation, I translate in my email and I don't invoice. (Well, it happens 1/2 times a year so..)

 
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