Day Rate Versus Fixed Quote: What We Recommend And Why

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We often get asked what our day rate is. It’s a familiar way of working for many people, and there certainly are merits of working in this fashion. However, as a copywriting agency, we tend to steer away from pricing up jobs on a day rate, in favour of providing a fixed quote for the task or project in question.

Why? Here, we outline the reasoning behind it:

How long is a piece of string?

You might be embarking on a website overhaul, building a campaign or pulling together a brochure for your business. This could take two days to complete or ten – it’s impossible to budget if you don’t know how long the provider will be spending on the project.

Unless you set a cap, costs can quickly start to spiral. The last thing you want is to run out of funds to finalise the work. By contrast, when agreeing to a fixed quote, you can accurately plan your budget.

Do you care about time?

Besides, does it matter how many hours it takes for the provider to complete a task? More time doesn’t necessarily equal better quality. In fact, it could mean that they lack the skills or experience to get the job done efficiently.

What you really care about is the result. For this reason, it seems sensible to agree a cost based on the outcome, rather than the time that goes into it. Most providers should be happy to provide timescales so that you can map out a schedule for completion.

What are suppliers accountable for?

Quoting on deliverables also improves accountability. When you pay someone on a day rate, you’re essentially giving carte blanche to a blank cheque. If you’re not happy with the content they deliver, they can simply say they need to spend more time on getting it right. You’re potentially paying the price for the provider missing the mark.

On the other hand, when you receive a quote for a website, brochure or marketing plan, you know that it’s the final cost of a satisfactory outcome. Many suppliers will state how many rounds of edits are included in this cost; just bear in mind that if the goal posts change from your side (for example, adding pages), the quote might need to be adjusted.

Do you want a value-adding service?

People that solely work on a day rate rarely over-deliver. Everything comes down to time and cost – that half an hour they spent on the phone to you, the edits they made to their work, the ideation that went into the concept in the first place… everything is itemised and charged for.

Agencies that work on a fixed quote basis think differently. They invest the time into getting to know you and your brand, and often go further to impress so that they can achieve the best results and, ultimately, earn your repeat business.

These are just a few reasons why both our team and our clients prefer to work to fixed prices. Of course, we aren’t against working to a day rate when the client or situation calls for it, but we’ve found that everyone benefits from a clear-cut approach to costs.

Want to get an idea of how much to budget for your next project? We’re always happy to talk things through. Get in touch with our Manchester copywriters to learn more about how our copywriting agency works.

Words by Kelly


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