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Why do I FREAKING bother.

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Slavik, May 9, 2011.

  1. Slavik

    Slavik XenForo Moderator Staff Member


    So, about 3 weeks ago I was commissioned to do a site for a company. I provided them with some mock ups, and eventually they went with a design (with some changes) and gave me the go ahead. We settled on a price, everything they would receive and any services afterwards and so I set to work making the site.

    Just got an email, that they have since been told elsewhere they can get a similar site made up for 1/2 my price, and want to know if I can reduce the price to something similar or they implied they would go with this other company (read, mate of a mate who can do basic web design).

    People like this make me freaking SICK to do my job. Seriously, 3 weeks after everything was agreed they pull this crap. Good for me I have the contract agreed and signed with, but god I wish these people would crawl up and die.

    The worst part is, the services I offer for Magento work is already nearly 50% cheaper than any other UK company out there.

    I need a new job. Any suggestions?

    /Rant over
  2. iTuN3r

    iTuN3r Well-Known Member

    sh!t happens lol :p
  3. danielwerner

    danielwerner Active Member

    Customers are that way. Same **** different job. :)
  4. ManagerJosh

    ManagerJosh Well-Known Member

    Do you have a cancellation policy into your contract? :).
  5. Slavik

    Slavik XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    Yes, it states they will be charged for all work undertaken up until the point of written cancellation. I have nearly finished the job so I get paid either way, I don't mind customers asking for a deal, as long as they do it before they agree on the price and definately NOT 3 weeks after the work has started.

    It's like hiring a contractor to re-do your bathroom. When he is nearly done you go out and find a contractor that would have done it cheaper and tell the original contractor you want it cheaper, he's gonna tell you where to shove it because you should have done the homework before hand.
  6. borbole

    borbole Well-Known Member

    I agree. But as long as you got paid, you shouldn''t care less what they will do. If they want to throw away more money by rehiring a second designer, let them.
    Vodkaholic likes this.
  7. Nasr

    Nasr Well-Known Member

    I'd say always take a deposit at least half the full price right after contract signing.
  8. turtile

    turtile Well-Known Member

    People do this with everything. Many times they don't have someone willing to do it for half the price. They just want to pressure you to lower the price.
    Peggy likes this.
  9. bambua

    bambua Well-Known Member

    I work in my primary job as an IT consultant and they do this on projects all the time. I'll quote them 160 hours for a project finish in 150 and they will complain about half the project and request a credit from my boss. It's part of the job :/
  10. motowebmaster

    motowebmaster Active Member

    Consider picking up a book on Negotiation, there are several good options on Amazon for low prices. Regardless of the size or complexity of an opportunity (such as a client asking for a price reduction), the goal is to turn every negotiation into an opportunity for both sides to win.

    When a client asks for a credit, I frequently "default" to a ask-for-more-sales strategy. However, my clients have put with me for over a decade; they know me :sneaky:

    Do what works for your business. The good news is that the client did come to you.
  11. grant sarver

    grant sarver Well-Known Member

    The biggest part of being in business is being in business. Not actually doing the work! A good businessman will beat a good mechanic/tech every time. If you're going to be dealing with people, learn to deal with people. Otherwise get a paying job.
  12. Blogojevich

    Blogojevich Member

    Sounds like you need to watch this:

    D.O.A., EQnoble, Onimua and 7 others like this.
  13. CyclingTribe

    CyclingTribe Well-Known Member

    Some good advice in there - worth a watch!! Especially for anyone in the design services industry. (y)

    So true too, that when you start a business you think it'll be all about doing great work for your clients - when in fact a good part of it is spent actually running the business!!!

    Being good at what you do just isn't enough, you've got to learn some business/client management skills too.

    Oh, and make sure you send your invoices out promptly too. Don't wait. Don't worry about the client getting the bill straight away. Get the invoices sent - today - every day - as soon as the work is done. If you don't your cashflow will be pants and your business will suffer (and you will too with stress when you can't pay your bills)!!!

    Shaun :D
    EQnoble and Kim like this.
  14. MGSteve

    MGSteve Well-Known Member

    I get this from time to time as well. Usually when you dig a bit deeper it is a friend of a friend who has done 1 week of a Graphic Design course and thinks that he's god's gift to Web Design - or more likely, the 3rd party is actually based in India and the website would be hosted on a shared server in the States, on the end of an internet connection akin to a piece of string.

    At the end of the day a contract is a contract and it would be foolish for them to pay you and then pay for a new site with someone else! I suspect they're just trying it on - like you say, annoying as well and really unprofessional, but human nature unfortunately.

    If they go about it nicely, I usually offer a discount off future work or hosting charges. If they're rude and obnoxiousness about it, I don't.

    But yeah, its an occupational hazard unfortunately.
  15. Dominion

    Dominion Active Member

    I hear your pain, Slavik. That sort of thing is why I don't translate anymore. I got tired of people asking me how I could charge such high rates when, after all, they could just plug their text in Google Translate. That gets old even when folks do it before the sale. I can't say I've had many people try to dicker after a job was done; I guess I was lucky.
    That sounds like a nice, even generous approach. Me, I would probably begin by politely reminding them that they agreed the price was fair way back before I started the job. If they persisted, I'd suggest it's less than honorable to go back on a deal. If they still persisted, I'd hint that professionals in my line of business tend to talk to each other, and that a bad reputation as an client would make it hard for them to get quality work done in the future.

    I guess I'm not as generous as MGSteve. But I've never had any qualms about refusing to deal further with a customer who was just too much trouble (even when I really needed the money, much to my wife's occasional dismay).
  16. CyclingTribe

    CyclingTribe Well-Known Member

    In 10 years of running my web design company I never lost a single client; I did, however, drop one. My first ever paying customer in fact.

    Over the years she haggled over prices, tried cheaper services (then came to me to bail her out and fix everything), got someone else to re-do my designs without consulting me (and then expected me to put it all right when they fluffed it up), and was a general nuisance - except in paying her bills. THAT she did very promptly, and so I kept her on and worked hard for her and earned the money.

    Then she asked for some work to be done and I quoted a fixed price. I started the work and she (as do soooo many clients) moved the goal posts and wanted additional work doing.

    When I presented the bill for a higher amount - which included the additional work - she flipped out and accused me of ripping her off. After all the work I'd done over the years - going over and above the call of duty to bail her out and keep her website up and running - she flips out over an extra £40 ($70).

    I explained that she had asked for the extra work - showed her the emails requesting it - and told her it was a fair price for what I'd done. She insisted it should have been included in the fixed price I'd previously quoted her, and wouldn't listen to reason.

    In the end, after much agonising over what to do, I sent a new bill at the lower fixed price but also explained that the trust in our business relationship was now broken and said I was no longer willing to offer my services. I gave her 30 days notice, helped her to move to another host and design company (for free), and drew a line under it.

    It was a shame - she'd been a good client over many years - and it was the first time I had said goodbye to a customer, but I couldn't work for someone who accused me of ripping them off. Simple as that really.

    It does illustrate though, that clients changing their mind about things after they have committed to something can cause all sorts of problems and can be quite a negative and stressful experience. I suppose you've just got to accept that sometimes it is going to go tits-up and deal with it quickly and move on with the positive aspects of your business and not invest too much time in worrying about it or being angry.

    To the OP - do you use contracts at all?
  17. Fred Sherman

    Fred Sherman Well-Known Member

    <body><p>1. I never do any work without a Statement of Work and a Master Services Agreement.<p>2. I do all work on a fixed bid basis. The way I calculate the rate is that a job should take X hours for someone with average skill and the industry average hourly rate is $Y. If I finish sooner, its because I am more skilled than the average consultant, so my hourly rate was higher. But at the end of the day, you pay the same price, you just get it done sooner.<p>3. Payment milestones and customer sign-off at each milestone are key. 20% down at start, another 40% and the midway point, 15% more at 75% complete and the balance at completion. Notice that I hold the upper hand financially until the 75% completed point. At half done, I've been paid 60% of my rate. They won't let you go, because they feel like you owe them. at 75% done/paid, their too invested in completion.<p><br><p>Also get customer sign off at each milestone, stating so far that the project has met or exceeded expectations. Also document every meeting and every phone call. Meetings I document with meeting minutes and phone calls with an email. You always need a paper trail to show their involvement in the process, agreement with direction, or that any changes are at their request.<p><br><p>4. Scope creep. NEVER, ever agree to do anything not in your Statement of Work. If requests come up, you need to do a Change Request and add any additional fees. As long as the deltas are small, all change request fees are due upon acceptance of the change in scope.<p><br><p>Stick to these basic guidelines and you'll find you're better protected.
    EQnoble and GeeksChat like this.
  18. Wuebit

    Wuebit Well-Known Member

    No. Sh*t don't just happen. Sh*t takes time. Sh*t takes effort.
  19. Slavik

    Slavik XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    All my work is contractually signed for on paper. I am used to people trying to haggle, but the reason for the post is I felt down right insulted that nearing the end of a project he would try something on like this. I have politely told him that the current contract was agreed upon, and as the project is nearly completed there would be no room to change the price.

    However after reading posts here and watching that video, I think my contract does need updating to include more than it does.
    GeeksChat likes this.
  20. Digital Doctor

    Digital Doctor Well-Known Member

    They didn't have the guts to talk to you on the phone !
    I don't think they expected you to lower your price.
    I think in this world ... decency is dead and people just try to scam what they can.
    Try to ignore them and update your contract !

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