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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am considering putting some pricing on my website

water heater replacement, disposals, sump pumps, water softeners, pressure tanks, etc

small/ standardized jobs only......

ive never seen any plumber or any trade for that matter just say what his prices are right out there on their website...its different

I don't see a reason not to

it saves phone time for me....the customer will call and already know what it costs, so I will have most jobs before I answer the phone...

any downside?

I only see the upside...I think some customers will find it refreshing and choose me because of honesty and directness
 

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Particulate Filter
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Works for me. Although most clients dont bother to read it. I probably miss out on some bids and may be undercut on a few jobs but eventually the price you post becomes the going rate. I also probably save myself 40 hours a year driving to pointless meetings.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I don't go to bid on anything under $1000 anyways...and I have flat rate pricing already on common tasks like water heaters....its just saving the customer the phone call and me wasted time from price shoppers......im just wondering if I would pick up any additional customers due to the ease of it and the honesty factor...I think I could see a 5-10% gain in calls + save a few minutes a week in wasted phone time with price shoppers and competitors playing games with me
 

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There are two common downsides to online pricing; a smart competitor could just knock 5% off your price, that's enough to close a lot of first time customers, you also lose the ability to sell a job via your personality and knowledge if the website isn't representative of those traits.

I'm not saying that online pricing is a bad idea, but your site had better be VERY compelling or you will just be getting contacts from people who got a higher price from someone else.
 

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I have had my service call rates (T&M) on my website for a couple years now and I'm very happy with the results. It seems to weed out the cheapskates so those calls have gone down considerably. I don't put any fixed rates other than that because all jobs are different.

I also create an email stream with the customers and have them acknowledge the service call pricing for T&M jobs after linking to that page.

I've gotten LOTS of new business from qualified customers due to this and many comment on how nice it is to see this all ahead of time.
 

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I've had pricing for shop paint stripping on our site for a few years, but am now changing the page to remove the on line price guide.
I do think it makes it too easy for competitors to undercut me, even before I get a chance to speak with a prospective customer, and sell them on why our process is better,our service superior, etc.
 

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I think this is very trades specific. I've thought many times of the benefits of posting costs, gutters in particular... if and only if the disclaimer is also posted and I can honor those prices.

All I can think of is $189 replacement windows that customers pay $700.
 

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I think it's a great idea. I'd call you. If other people are like me, they don't want to spend a lot of time just to save a couple bucks. Calling and meeting with different plumbers, (no offense) but I got better things to do, 10 -20% difference in price no big deal. What I don't want is to get bent over. You take the fear of the unknown out by listing price. When I'm searching for someone and see a fixed price for a service and the price seems reasonable, that's the person I call.
 

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If you were to create a price list on your website. I would think about making at least one of your services a "loss leader". Price a service you don't mind doing at or just above cost, below your competitor's, that way you can determine if the flat prices are working. If everyone just calls you on your loss leader, you have a very price conscious customer base and listing your money maker's may not be advantageous.

The other benefit of a loss leader is making lots of new customers. Most large businesses, retailers,restaurants,suppliers,etc .like to draw people in with a loser in order to soak them on something else. McDonald's comes to mind.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Why would you want to give your competition that information?
they can call me anytime they want and just ask me 'how much for a water heater' and id tell them anyways....or call and ask how much for T&M on a small job....and id tell them my hourly rate....happens almost daily....some of them aren't customers, they are competition

since I don't compete on price I don't care if they find out....how does that lose anything?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
There are two common downsides to online pricing; a smart competitor could just knock 5% off your price, that's enough to close a lot of first time customers, you also lose the ability to sell a job via your personality and knowledge if the website isn't representative of those traits.

I'm not saying that online pricing is a bad idea, but your site had better be VERY compelling or you will just be getting contacts from people who got a higher price from someone else.
the competition is 5-15% lower already.....what do I care if they find out what my prices are...im not going for the price shopper customer...I don't win them........my business is not designed to win them....I win customers who want quality/service

i agree that I will lose the ability to sell via personality......but for those small jobs there isn't much sales anyways...they call and say 'my water heater is leaking, how much for a 50 gallon?"....my website can warn them about bad brand names and explain the little things I do better....I will have such a website.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
If you were to create a price list on your website. I would think about making at least one of your services a "loss leader". Price a service you don't mind doing at or just above cost, below your competitor's, that way you can determine if the flat prices are working. If everyone just calls you on your loss leader, you have a very price conscious customer base and listing your money maker's may not be advantageous.

The other benefit of a loss leader is making lots of new customers. Most large businesses, retailers,restaurants,suppliers,etc .like to draw people in with a loser in order to soak them on something else. McDonald's comes to mind.
not a believer in loss leader....I know my customer base....many don't even ask how much per hour on T&M jobs....they are referrals or repeat customers and want ME........good idea though, just not something I need
 

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they can call me anytime they want and just ask me 'how much for a water heater' and id tell them anyways....or call and ask how much for T&M on a small job....and id tell them my hourly rate....happens almost daily....some of them aren't customers, they are competition

since I don't compete on price I don't care if they find out....how does that lose anything?
Well said.:thumbsup:

Same here. My pricing for T&M is fair and reasonable. I have nothing to hide. It's MUCH higher than the "Craigs List" rates they will find so it saves me the time of answering the phone to explain the exact same thing to somebody who thinks they can "get a guy for half the price". Those aren't customers I want anyway.

I couldn't care less if the competition knows my T&M rates either.
 

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rselectric1 said:
Well said.:thumbsup: Same here. My pricing for T&M is fair and reasonable. I have nothing to hide. It's MUCH higher than the "Craigs List" rates they will find so it saves me the time of answering the phone to explain the exact same thing to somebody who thinks they can "get a guy for half the price". Those aren't customers I want anyway. I couldn't care less if the competition knows my T&M rates either.

I agree I'm going to try this out on bbgcarpentry.com

Get rid of the tire kickers
 

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not a believer in loss leader....I know my customer base....many don't even ask how much per hour on T&M jobs....they are referrals or repeat customers and want ME........good idea though, just not something I need
Yes but, don't you want to expand your base? There are more than one type of customer, the one's who don't ask price are obviously the best but they only make up a fraction of the pie. In order to do more business you may need to attract some folks who do ask price or are price sensitive. You can profit from them too but you have to offer them a teaser to get them interested.

On the other hand you may be content to making more per hr.working less, if that's the case forget what I just said.:whistling
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Yes but, don't you want to expand your base? There are more than one type of customer, the one's who don't ask price are obviously the best but they only make up a fraction of the pie. In order to do more business you may need to attract some folks who do ask price or are price sensitive. You can profit from them too but you have to offer them a teaser to get them interested.

On the other hand you may be content to making more per hr.working less, if that's the case forget what I just said.:whistling
I only market to the 40-50% who are willing to pay more for quality/service

the 50-60% who shop by price only are not my customers.....unless I lower my prices I wont get the 50-60% who shop by price alone and wonder why they always get a sh*tty job.......ive blown off the low price shopper long ago...and that's when I became rich and my sales skyrocketed

people who shop by quality/service are friends with others that are similar minded....just like cheap people have cheap friends....as a business YOU choose your customer....I choose the upper middle class/rich customer
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Ok, I agree. Then what do you got to lose by posting your prices?. I like you only see the upside if your above theory is correct. Maybe the prices you post should be even higher than your current rates.
there is always a sweet spot with prices of any product/service....it IS possible to raise your prices, not lose many more jobs and make more $ on the jobs you get...I tried this in reverse on water heaters once...I lowered my price by $75 a heater......didn't increase my % at all over a 3 month period........so I lost around $500 = $75 at a time

raised my prices back up and added $25 a heater...once again I kept my same sales %.....to me it proves im very close to the sweet spot as I am
 
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