How much does a website cost?
I bet you get that question from clients weekly, right? I know I sure did.
I learned to tell clients that question is like asking “how much does a car cost?” or “how much does a house cost?”
There are so many variables to it and I think that’s why it’s so tricky for web designers to determine pricing.
Add on top of that, your mindset of money. Which is what is most common in keeping web designers from building a profitable business.
So to help on all fronts, I’m so excited to bring one of my new best friends (and complete competition to me), web designer business coach Shannon Mattern to share her thoughts on web design pricing and the mindset of raising rates confidently, pricing so you can have a profitable business, weeding out cheap clients and much more.
This is a conversation I wish I would’ve heard early in my web design career! And even if you’re more established, hopefully this is a kick in the pants to raise those rates!
In this episode:
00:00 – introduction
03:43 – Greeting to Shannon
07:36 – Self-taught to burn-out
13:08 – Business coach advice
16:06 – Mindset shift
18:45 – Charge for experience
20:51 – Faster = more profitable
25:20 – Helping others
28:22 – Golden handcuffs
30:36 – Finding the sweet spot
31:48 – Do it scared
34:04 – Client’s wallets
37:13 – Rule of 10x
39:13 – Appropriate verbiage
43:35 – Control the variables
52:47 – Bringing clients in
59:30 – Price increase coping
1:01:36 – Websites as commodities
1:06:59 – Financial goals
1:12:39 – Planning ahead
1:22:34 – Control the timeline
1:29:29 – Final thoughts
Connect with Shannon:
- Website Designer Academy
- Follow Shannon on Instagram
- Shannon’s YouTube Channel
- Follow Shannon on Facebook
Featured links mentioned:
Episode #201 Full Transcription
[00:00:00] Josh: Hello, fine friends. Welcome in to episode 201 where I am so excited to bring to you one of my very new favorite colleagues in the web design realm. This is Shannon Mattern, who is also a fellow web design business coach. And as I’ve got to know Shannon a lot more recently, it just dawned on me that I’m like, how the heck have we not met before or connected before? She’s local here to me in Columbus, Ohio. And she is also, uh, as you’ll find out in this interview, very aligned with a lot of my thoughts on web design and how to grow your business, how to work remotely.
[00:00:36] Josh: And what we’re gonna talk about in this episode in depth is pricing. I’m kind of surprised. We really haven’t really, I mean, we’ve talked about pricing in a lot of episodes and have gone into it, um, in a bunch of different tangents, in different episodes, even if they were off topic. But in this episode, I wanted to specifically talk about pricing because I know it’s one of the hardest things to figure out when you’re early on.
[00:01:00] Josh: Even if you’re more established in your journey, it’s still kind of tricky to figure out where your price point should be, where the market is right now, how to price your services. Of course, there’s a lot of different variables to it. The question, how much does a website cost? I know you get that from your clients.
[00:01:15] Josh: It’s like, well, how much does a car cost? How much does a house cost? There’s so many variables to it. So in this episode, I’m so excited to bring on Shannon who has a lot of really interesting thoughts and real world experience about undercharging and how, and she shares in this episode, how you can raise your rates confidently and oh gosh, just price accordingly to make sure that you actually have a profitable business, but it also suits your ideal clients as well.
[00:01:43] Josh: So I can’t wait for you to hear this conversation on pricing. We’re gonna dive right into it. And before we do, if you need help with your business, you can charge premium rates. But if you can’t give a premium experience, it’s gonna be hard to back that up. So I wanna make sure if you’re a, a, if you’re new to my brand and you’re new to the show, I do have my web design business course, which is literally my point A to point B, start to finish, grow your dream web design business.
[00:02:11] Josh: It, it’s got all my SOPs. Everything is in that course. It covers pricing in there. We cover getting clients, project management, really from start to finish the client experience. I’d love to help you out with that personally. So that’s all inside my business course. You can go to Josh hall dot coast slash business to check that out today.
[00:02:28] Josh: I think that’ll be a great compliment for you after this episode. Once you get confident with pricing and you’re feeling inspired to raise your rates and, and have some profit. And to really grow your dream business. So you can have freedom in the lifestyle you love. That’s what I want for you. So this episode will help with pricing and then I would love to help you with the business side of things and making sure you can fulfill that premium experience for your clients.
[00:02:50] Josh: So again, just go to Josh hall dot coast slash business for that. Oh, and last thing I wanted to mention before we dive in Shannon also has a free resource for you. And after this conversation, if you like this idea of the mindset of pricing that we talked about, she actually has a workshop that you can download for free.
[00:03:06] Josh: If you go to web designer, academy.com/josh, you can pick up that free pricing mindset workshop. Once again, that link is web designer, academy.com/josh to go pick that up and we’ll have that linked in the show notes. Of course, at Josh hall.co/ 2 0 1. Okay. That’s long enough intro. Here’s Shannon let’s talk pricing.
[00:03:30] Josh: Shannon, my complete competition and my new best friend. Who’s a local here in Columbus, Ohio. Welcome to the podcast. Thanks for taking some time to chat.
[00:03:39] Shannon: Oh, I love it. Thank you so much for having me. I’m I’m just thrilled for this, for this episode.
[00:03:45] Josh: Well, it was so cool. We got to meet up in person just last month at the time of recording this, uh, we have a mutual friend in Jason Garcia, who I’m in a mastermind with. And he was like, dude, have you heard of Shannon mad? And I’m like, uh, no, I haven’t. He’s like, she’s, she’s like you like the, the girl version of you. And I looked at your site, you are a web design business coach as well. And I absolutely love what you’re up to. And it was really cool to, to just, you know, chat, have a casual chat and talk shop a while ago.
[00:04:12] Josh: So, I mean, there are probably, you know, 37,000 topics we could dive into, but one thing that you and I were chatting about that I think a lot of our students have an issue with is pricing. Uh, and there’s so many different ways to price there’s mindsets, there’s client personality types. So I’m so excited to kind of hone in on this particular topic. If that sounds good with you.
[00:04:34] Shannon: Oh, yeah, I’m super excited to talk about this and my community, um, you know, has said the same thing to me. Have you heard of Josh hall? Do you do you know, know him? And then when we found out we lived in the same town, it was like, just, just meant to be this conversation was meant to be so I’m, I’m thrilled to be here. And I, pricing’s one of my favorite topics.
[00:04:55] Josh: And you know what, lesson number one. I, I don’t think you would’ve known. I lived in Columbus and I didn’t know that either until I, I had it in my email signature, I have based in Columbus, Ohio. Yeah. And you were like, you’re in Columbus. So am I, that’s a maybe tip number one for everybody is when you put your, you know, didn’t have to put your address, but if you put your location in your email signature, it often prompts relationships, especially if you’re locally or working regionally or even more. So if you’re working with global clients, it’s good to know the time zone. So, uh, I’m glad that that kind of played out well for us, just having that in my email signature.
[00:05:29] Shannon: Oh, yeah, it’s such a good idea. I’m definitely gonna have to do it. And I don’t know how many times I have met someone, an entrepreneur online and somehow like two months in, we figure out we live like up two miles from each other or in the same town or, you know, so it’s, it’s really cool. I’m, I’m glad that you did that, cuz yeah, that it just made it like all the more cool to meet you.
[00:05:53] Josh: I would’ve, I would’ve been so upset if we did a bunch of online calls and then figured out like what you’re like, you know, half an hour off the road for me. So , uh, well, there’s something in the water in Columbus, Ohio with entrepreneurs and business owners.
[00:06:05] Josh: And, um, it’s a, it’s a, it’s a really cool spot, but I mean, obviously you and I are teaching web design, which is global and there’s principles that are timeless. And actually that’s an interesting point in regards to pricing because you and I are in an area with a booming and economy. Columbus has always been a, a city that’s growing.
[00:06:24] Josh: I mean, we’re one of the top real estate markets right now. So it’s probably easy for someone to say like, well, yeah, you guys are in Columbus, Ohio. It’s easier to get high in paying clients, but I’m kinda curious before we dive into your Shannon, have, do you feel like no matter where you are in the world and where your clients are, you can still charge premium rates?
[00:06:42] Shannon: Oh, absolutely. And I think I’ve only ever had one local client. You know, so it it’s, it’s fascinating. Like yeah, you can, it really is all about how you think about pricing, how you position yourself, you know, all, all of the things. It, it does not matter where you live.
[00:07:01] Josh: Gosh, it’s people need to hear that. I feel like people really, really need to hear that. And I know what we’re gonna talk about. I think with pricing, we’ll kind of shed something on how to, to come across and how to explain your value. So I let’s maybe start with your backstory though, real quick. You’re I mean, you’re like me, you’re a web design business coach. You are super passionate about helping people build this, you know, online, remote style of freedom with web design, but you were actually, you, you told me this in person, but for those who don’t know you yet, Shannon, can you just give us a little bit of backstory on how you became a web designer and then how you eventually started.
[00:07:36] Shannon: Yeah, so I did not go to school for web design. I went to Ohio state and got a degree in communications and promptly landed a job as an intern, doing data entry in the marketing department of a law firm. Um, I had taken like one class, uh, to learn HTML in dream Weaver, way back in the day. And I was like, that was fun to learn, but whatever.
[00:07:59] Shannon: Um, and so I got my start in building websites to solve business problems. So in my, uh, at my company, they were like, oh, Hey, we have this big case. And there’s a lot of, um, clients involved in it and we need a way to communicate with them and keep them updated on like everything that’s going on. So being the intern in the communications department, I’m like, oh, I’ve heard of this thing called a WordPress.
[00:08:25] Shannon: Like, I bet we could make a blog and, you know, create a way to keep these clients updated. So that was kind of like my first foray into. Building a website and it was really all about like, how do I solve this business problem? What are the require, the requirements, um, that are needed? And I got hooked because I cannot, I’m just like, oh my gosh, I can really create anything that I can imagine or dream up.
[00:08:52] Shannon: Like there’s a plugin for that. There’s a way to do it. I can, you know, so I, I really started to teach myself based on the needs of my client and like fast forward to my next role as a communications director for a nonprofit, um, you know, it was like, Hey, we’re a nonprofit let’s bootstrap. So communications director is now also like the web designer and the web developer.
[00:09:14] Shannon: Right. And so I started again, solving business problems for this organization and I ended up creating this, um, continu online, continuing education website. That sold, uh, online courses to these professionals who had to like re-certify and, and reup their license every year. And so they had this, you know, license period.
[00:09:36] Shannon: So I’m like, how do we like automate this? How do we put it online? How do we create revenue? And like, we quadrupled the revenue for this program. And it was like, at that time where I was just like, wait a minute, if I was able to like, build this site that generates over a hundred thousand dollars in revenue for my company every year.
[00:09:58] Shannon: Why couldn’t I do that for myself? Beautiful. You know? And I started to like, have these little seeds planted in my brain, or why couldn’t I do that for other clients? Right. Someone could hire me to build this for them. you know, and that is when I had a vendor that worked at that company say, Hey, who built that website?
[00:10:20] Shannon: I was like, oh, I did. And he goes, do you do side work? And I’m like, Uh, let me check with my boss and see if I’m allowed to do that, but sure. And that kind of started my freelance, my foray into getting freelance clients. And he’s like, well, how much do you charge? And I’m like, oh, I don’t know. I think I make like $22 an hour in this role at my day job. So $22 an hour. <laugh>’s how I priced myself in the very beginning and long story longer. I got totally burnt out because that is not a sustainable way to choose a price.
[00:10:57] Josh: Right. Another valuable lesson, business, cheap pricing doesn’t serve anyone because you’re gonna be out of business soon.
[00:11:04] Shannon: Oh, my goodness. There is not enough time. It, you, you cannot, you can’t charge that way as a freelancer. Um, and so I was really good at what I did. I was a people pleaser. I was a professional employee. I jumped when my client said jump. I, you know, didn’t build them for things that I thought I should have known or should shouldn’t have done.
[00:11:24] Shannon: And I was like, um, yeah, I cannot keep doing this. There’s no way I will ever replace my day job income. Um, freelance web designing. I did not think there was a different way to do what I was doing so
[00:11:38] Josh: Gotcha.
[00:11:38] Shannon: I was just like, I can’t and I completely burnt out after like, 18 months of freelancing. And I was,
[00:11:45] Josh: I was ask how long that initial freelancing period. So you did a year and a half of freelancing at really low cost. Right. And that was all side hustle.
[00:11:53] Shannon: Yeah. All side hustle a year and a half. And I was just like, I cannot keep doing this. And I thought I was gonna create like some freedom and be able to quit my day job. And so I was like about, I was like, I’m wrapping up these projects that are just dragging on forever, cuz my clients aren’t cooperating and I’m not getting paid anyway.
[00:12:11] Shannon: So I’m gonna like wrap these up and I’m just gonna go back to being an employee. And that’s when I heard, um, an episode of smart passive income podcast with Pat Flynn talking about how he teaches people, how to, you know, set up their blog on their website with blue host and he gets affiliate commissions from it.
[00:12:30] Shannon: And I was like, that’s a thing. What are you talking about? So I threw away my freelance business. I just stopped it completely. Like I finished those projects. I built a, a online training to teach people how to do it themselves because my pricing was so messed up. like, I was like, I can’t be a freelance web designer.
[00:12:51] Shannon: So I launched this free DIY web design training, and then people started signing up. I started marketing it. People were signing up for it, taking it, and then I would get clients reach out to me and say, Hey, I that’s great. Thanks for showing me how to do it, but I don’t wanna do it. Will you do it for me?
[00:13:08] Shannon: And I was just like, no, it’s not worth it to me. and then I had a business coach, thank goodness, come along and say, Hey, guess what? You can charge more for this. You’re leaving a ton of money on the table. If you actually wanna quit your day job, this is the path you need to get your mindset right around this, your pricing right around this and everything. Right. Because you can actually make this work. And so that’s what I did.
[00:13:34] Josh: I was curious as to what kept you from stopping all that. And particularly when the price, the mental shift of pricing changed, what led the business coach? Like, I, I, I kind of fumbled into the mindset of pricing with experience, and then just colleagues saying like, well, I’m charging like three grand, you’re charging $800.
[00:13:54] Josh: What are you doing? Um, I didn’t really have somebody be like, you should double your rates necessarily, but you fortunately had a coach tell you that. How did that start for you though? Shannon? I’m kind of curious, like was, yeah. How did, how did the business coach come along?
[00:14:07] Shannon: She signed up for my free DIY web design training.
[00:14:11] Josh: Oh, okay. So you were like, I need a business coach.
[00:14:14] Shannon: Yeah, no, I was like I’m alone. I didn’t even know business coaches were a thing. Like I had no idea that there was someone out there that could actually like, help me grow my business. And so she signed up for my training and she was one of the ones that was like, can I just hire you?
[00:14:28] Shannon: And I was like, absolutely not. Like, no. And she’s like, but I’ll pay you. And I’m like, it’s not worth it to me cuz I had, I had such bad boundaries yeah. Before that. And so she was like, Get on a phone call with me, like she needed a talk some sense into me, so she did. And, um, and even still my, my, I went from, um, $22 an hour to a thousand dollars for this website that I was teaching people how to build for free. And that felt like I was ripping them off.
[00:15:02] Josh: Gotcha. So, yeah, I was kind of curious, could you get, was there like an average, so you’re 22 bucks an hour and I, were you doing all hourly work or did you have like 500 bucks for a website? What was the, what was your initial phase of pricing?
[00:15:15] Shannon: It was all hourly. So it was like, and I think it’ll take me this many hours and I forgot to, I forgot, or I didn’t know that I also needed to factor in all the hours that I spend talking to you and chasing you for your content. And, you know, it’s like, it’s so I can build a website in five hours, like or less. Right. But when you put the client of client into the mix, Quadruple that.
[00:15:41] Josh: I was just thinking, this is, this is what most salary people don’t understand when they get into business at first. And that is your hourly rate that you make it your job. Let’s say it’s like a hundred dollars an hour. Yeah. When you go into freelance and own your own business, that is not what you take home. Like you do in your salary job after taxes. Yeah. It’s like you’ve got all the other expenses and all the other time that are not accounted for us. That’s such an important underlying factor with pricing.
[00:16:06] Shannon: Oh, yeah. I mean, I call it like I did not even, I was any nowhere close to figuring this out back then. Um, but now I talk about what’s called your minimum baseline revenue. So you figure out how much you wanna pay yourself first. Then you add on your business expenses on top of that, which hopefully includes coaching and mentorship.
[00:16:26] Shannon: Um, and then what you think will come out in taxes, you know, so I tack on an additional, you know, 20% for that. And so what I found for myself was when I was still working at my day job, I needed to bring in about 10,000 a month to be able to pay myself, you know, five or 6,000 and then have the rest for mentorship and taxes and maybe some, a bonus and some profit, you know, at the end.
[00:16:51] Shannon: And so I wasn’t doing that. I still had an employee mindset of like, oh my ti I’m, I’m getting paid for my time. Not for my skills, not for my expertise, not for my ideas, not for my intellectual property. I was just selling my time. And even when I started working with that business coach, she was trying to help me understand that, you know, even though I was self taught, my skills were valuable, even though it was easy for me, that didn’t mean it was easy for someone else, you know? And it, I, I was very resistant to the idea because I was conditioned to sell my time for what someone else thought it was worth.
[00:17:31] Josh: Yeah. Oh my gosh. I mean, well, first of all, I’m cringing as probably everyone is hearing about a 20 to $22 hourly rate bill hourly. Uh, but you just said something really important there, and that is that you felt weird because you could do it quick, but somebody else like, like essentially something that you’ve learned over the years has got you to a place where you could do it.
[00:17:53] Josh: You could bust it out real quick. And that was a massive pricing, mental shift for me. It was. And I, I remember I had a client one time when I was doing business cards, I charged a hundred dollars at one point for business card designs. And he’s like, he was just real hesitant and he’s like, I could go on Vista print and get it for like 25 bucks.
[00:18:10] Josh: I’m like, you can get the cards and you could choose their template. But my design. Is, I mean, I was well under charging then too, but I still learned at that point, this is like a hundred dollars an hour of my time based off of years of experience. So it’s such an important thing to remember, just because you can bust something out in 10 minutes.
[00:18:30] Josh: The only reason you can do it in 10 minutes is because you may have spent 10 years learning that, that, that way it doesn’t take 10 hours. It takes 10 minutes. So I didn’t mean to derail us right there, but I, I think it’s a really important mentor hurdle that most people go through when it comes to pricing.
[00:18:45] Shannon: Oh, absolutely. It’s it’s this whole, I can’t charge that much because it doesn’t, it’s not hard and it doesn’t take me a long time and it’s like, no, that’s, you’re an expert at your craft. That is a benefit to your client. That you can turn things around that quickly, every moment that they don’t have what you created for them in their business, they are, they are missing out on all the opportunities and things that they can create from having what you designed for them.
[00:19:15] Shannon: And so that time, the fact that you can do it fast, makes it more valuable, not less valuable. So I had to that’s so huge mental shift for me there.
[00:19:27] Josh: Oh my gosh. You and me both. I mean, and I think everyone does, once you get to a certain point, I’m sure a lot of people listening have already been there and they’re like, yes, that’s exactly what I went through.
[00:19:36] Josh: Some people are probably like, that’s what I’m going through right now. Like, it feels weird to charge four or $5,000 for a project. But if I’m getting down to less than 30 or 40 hours on a project, I might make a couple hundred dollars an hour, 300 bucks an hour. But the thing is, and I, I think it was Chris do of, uh, the future who I, I need to try to get him on the show, but he talked about, uh, in a clip.
[00:19:59] Josh: I solve him clients. Where, like we think a project of like a higher amount should take a long time, just naturally when we’re in a limited mindset, but clients don’t want to pay somebody to take a long time on something. They want a quick result. So like if you told a client, look, this is gonna be $5,000 because it’s gonna take me a hundred hours or 150 hours versus this is $5,000 this is the result. Like it we’ll get this done it. I’m not even gonna talk about my hours in this. This is the result. It’s all about the result.
[00:20:32] Josh: Would you agree with me Shannon saying like, we need to shift our mindset from our like hourly work and, and what we do in an hour versus like the results that we get for our clients, the faster we get stuff done, the faster we become, the more profitable we be like that, that’s what I’ve learned at least.
[00:20:51] Shannon: Oh, a thousand percent. And you know, when we talk about shifting how we think about it, you know, and like, Like you said, there is no point about talking about how much time it’s gonna take you with a client. Right? All you’re doing is preframing them to start doing some math about how much they’re paying you an hour and, and we don’t, that’s good point to plant those kinds of seeds in, in their mind.
[00:21:17] Shannon: And it’s like, yes. Talk about their results. Talk about what’s possible for them. When they have this tool that you’re building for them, talk about, you know, how quickly they can start recouping the return on their investment, because the timeframe is six weeks and not six months for, for this project.
[00:21:34] Shannon: You know, when you start speaking to them in terms of return on investment for them and their business and not, well, it’s gonna be hard. And it’s gonna take me this long and it’s this many hours and it’s this intensive and here’s all the things I’m building for you. So you should pay me this. It’s like.
[00:21:52] Shannon: It’s not about you, like it’s about your client and it’s all about what is possible for them when they are able to use the tool that you built for them. And that unties your time from pricing your skills from pricing, like everything from pricing, when you really look at like, what is possible for them when they have. That they didn’t have before.
[00:22:16] Josh: Oh, I wish you were my coach 10 years ago.
[00:22:19] Shannon: I wish I was my coach 10 years ago.
[00:22:21] Josh: And that’s why we do what we do because yeah. Somebody, somebody needs to hear this. Um, gosh, it’s so important. I mean, we’re talking mindset and people are like, I don’t wanna talk about mindset. It’s the most important thing. It is the most important thing, particularly early on when. Y like it’s, it’s so easy. I feel, I feel like hourly is a trap and yes, it is weird because I do think there’s a lot of benefit in knowing what you wanna make and getting a feel for your hourly rate. I actually do recommend that for people just starting out, because they might not feel like I, there’s no way I can charge a hundred bucks an hour, but I don’t want you to charge, you know, $2 an hour, which is what most people end up making.
[00:22:58] Josh: So I do think there’s a lot of, uh, validity in knowing your basic hourly rate and your income needs, but then once you get that in place, you very quickly move out of that hourly mindset. I, I just, gosh, I totally back everything you set up there. Shannon. Now I’m curious. Did you like you’re working with this business coach you’re a year and a half in you almost call it quits. Did you like go from night and day shift and have like double triple rates or was it a slow progression into higher pricing?
[00:23:31] Shannon: My pricing shifted at the rate. My mindset shifted so it was, it was slower in the beginning because I was unlearning a lot of, of things that I thought to be true or thought, you know, weren’t possible. And so I was able to increase my price at, you know, at the rate that my mindset shifted. I was able to increase my price after working with clients where I thought never again, I definitely undercharged there. Um, it was a messy, long, hard process on I’m not gonna lie.
[00:24:08] Shannon: Like I’m I, and the only reason that I stuck with it, the second time was I just knew that on the other side of it, I would have the freedom, flexibility, and financial independence that I wanted. And I also started to realize, like, I’m sure you did early on in, in your career. Like there are other web designers out here struggling. And what I found was there were some problems that I had solved and I was able to kind of like teach the, the people who were reaching out to me and saying like, Hey, how are you getting clients, you know, how are you, how are you doing this?
[00:24:45] Shannon: How are you, um, you know, kind of like creating this, I was almost kind of doing like a productized service back then, right? So I’m like, here’s my free five day website challenge, but I’ll build this thing for you. Um, if you want, they were asking me how to do that back then. And so I was really determined to figure it out, to help them. It, it almost transformed from like, oh, I need to figure this out. I was like, I owe it to all of us to figure this out. and that’s really kind of how it, how it worked. And then it really here’s the fascinating thing.
[00:25:20] Shannon: By the time I was pitching. Like five figure web design projects. I was at a crossroads in my business mm-hmm and I had a client come to me and I had like gotten my mindset, right. That like, these are my solutions. My ideas are valuable. The intellectual property that like the ideas that I come up with to solve business problems for my clients are very valuable.
[00:25:46] Shannon: And the fact that I actually know how to implement them and do it and do it quickly and well, and I care that’s worth a lot of money. And so I had a proposal come through from a client and I was like, oh, this is like a $25,000 package. And so I like put together everything sent it over, they wanted to move forward.
[00:26:08] Shannon: And then I was like, I don’t wanna do this anymore. I, I was like, I wanna teach, like, if I take on this project for the next six months, I will not have the bandwidth for my courses, my training. Right. I didn’t wanna outsource, I had, I had dabbled in outsourcing, but I was still under charging. Um, so I wasn’t, like, I was given all my money to my subcontractors.
[00:26:32] Shannon: I still hadn’t figured out my pricing yet. And so I turned, I, I declined the project, like after he was like, yep, let’s do it. I was like, you know what I said, I’m so sorry. Like, I’m going to withdraw from this. And I’m, and I stopped working with clients that fall and went all in on the coaching and training.
[00:26:53] Shannon: And so I was like, well, I’ve proven that I could sell a project at this, at this price point. So let’s go help other people do it, you know? Yeah. And it was, I had to. Grow to that point in my business to be able to really help other people, but the one on one stuff, wasn’t where my heart was at anymore.
[00:27:14] Josh: Well, and you also hit a really interesting, I think, uh, kinda like mindset shift where sometimes those big projects that look awesome on paper are kind of golden handcuffs and you’re like, I, I think we talked about this in person, like I found my sweet spot with 3000 to $5,000 websites on average for the initial builds.
[00:27:37] Josh: And then we would do ongoing SEO and different programs. So a lot of my clients ended up being $10,000 a year clients. Yeah. That was kind of my sweet spot. Some of the bigger clients I had. Yeah. I was like, wow, $12,000, 15 K. Um, they ended up being like 10 times more work. And I was like, I just assume nail that like $4,000, small business, all my systems are in place.
[00:27:58] Josh: They’re a great client. They get on hosting and maintenance. Then we do SEO and content and stuff and phases. And then they end up being a $10,000 client later on that’s was a big mindset shift, uh, mindset shift that I had where like some of those big, big numbers can often be, like I said, those golden handcuffs. Did you have any other projects like that, that deterred you once you got past a certain point?
[00:28:22] Shannon: I love how you just said golden handcuffs, cuz that’s what I felt like my day job was before I quit it, then that’s what I felt like my web design client projects were. Um, until I, uh, until I had transitioned out of that, I absolutely love what you just said about like finding your sweet spot, um, with like what you, what, you know, you can confidently sell all day every day.
[00:28:51] Shannon: Um, and do that. I, I, the, to answer your question about projects, it was like I was loving the clients that I worked with at the time. And I was like, I would love to just like, I, I was loving my clients. I was loving the projects. I was loving, testing out different like ways of like pricing and making offers.
[00:29:11] Shannon: And you know, I was like building all this stuff and I was handing it over to like my, the, the students that I was coaching. So it really kind of was that like decision point of. You know, I li I like making money. I have big financial goals for myself, you know, I have it’s coming in and it’s working, but like, where do I feel? The most purpose? Yeah. And so it was very, it was such a tough decision because I was like, I love working with these people, but I would much rather train other people to work with them. support.
[00:29:50] Josh: Yeah. It’s also do it myself. It’s different when, like, you and I are so similar because we’ve gone through the same thing. Yes. Where, whereas most, most web designers don’t have like a teaching. I mean, some do, but it it’s different when you get to a certain level and you can scale your agency and that’s still your passion and that’s what you wanna do. Yes. Like that was my passion for a while. But same thing, as soon as I started teaching, I was like, I could go for these bigger projects.
[00:30:14] Josh: I could keep on doing this, but I wanna do my courses, but it, it really. It all goes back to like from a pricing model, finding your sweet spot. And sometimes I found this as seasonal too. You said it like you had to almost your pricing had to wait until your mindset was ready for it. That’s a biggie. My recommendation is generally to up your prices first and let your mindset catch up with it.
[00:30:36] Josh: Because as soon as you land that $5,000 project and you’re used to charging 1500, it’s awesome. But there is a big difference when you get to the five figure range, the $10,000. Plus those projects I’ve found at least are for the most part different. Now, sometimes they’re equally as valuable, but for the usually companies that are 10,000 plus are gonna be a little bit different ball game than like your like under 10,000 for what was your sweet spot? Shannon. When you were designing websites, when you were at like your peak performance as a web designer and freelancer, what was your sweet spot?
[00:31:10] Shannon: It was between jobs between five and 10,000.
[00:31:12] Josh: Okay.
[00:31:12] Shannon: Yeah. And so that’s when that $25,000 one came and I was just like, you know, I got the, yes, I was like, this is gonna be a huge chunk of my life. And it also felt like I I’m, I’m falling back into that employee, uh, employee mindset again, with, with this type of a, with this level of a project and like what it was gonna require. But you said something earlier about like, you recommend just like charging and growing into it. I wholeheartedly agree with you on that. Like, like I’m saying, like go, we, we always say get paid to do it scared.
[00:31:48] Shannon: That’s what we say in our program, because it’s like. You as a web designer, it’s like, you know, you can figure anything out. And especially if you’re in a community like yours, you have support, you have people, you can answer, ask questions of you have, you know, all of this. So it’s like, why not book the job? If you’re reasonably confident you can accomplish it. But there are a few pieces out there that you’re not sure of. And you’re a little scared, like get paid to do it scared.
[00:32:17] Shannon: You’ll figure it out. Especially when you’re working with, you know, someone like Josh inside of his programs to like support you through all of that. Like, why not? Like I would not recommend anybody do follow my path. right. Yeah. Right, right. I learned all the hard lessons and I, as I’m sure you did, and we’re. Lifting out like, Hey, here’s what not to do. Just skip over that part and like do this instead.
[00:32:45] Josh: Yeah I was gonna say I’m sure both of our, all of our courses and programs are basically just what not to do and here’s, here’s what I would do differently. Yeah. It’s that’s key and it is interesting. I like that you said that web designers in particular, I, I totally agree with this, that. Web designers. We can figure stuff out. We’re used to figuring it out. So when you get that higher project or you STR you go outside your comfort zone, you will figure it out.
[00:33:09] Josh: Um, obviously, yeah, if it’s something that is just like completely outside of your realm, either partner up with somebody, make sure you’re in some sort of community where there’s trusted people who can be referral partners or just outsources completely. But for the most part, you’ll figure it out. And I know personally, I don’t know how, how, if, if you experienced this, but when I started getting my average projects to the three to four to 5,000 range, pretty much all my clients that were paying me a thousand to 2000 were still saying yes.
[00:33:38] Josh: So then I looked back and I was like, I’ve probably got. At least two years of charging a thousand dollars when I could’ve been charging three and four, and that would’ve been, I mean, I would’ve thought I was just high rolling. You know what I mean? like, I was like, I cannot believe I let two years go by without charging these rates. I wouldn’t have had to do any work different. I just would’ve made, you know, almost triple what I was, what I was making
[00:34:04] Shannon: Well and I think, you know, my coach Mariah cause always says, stay outta your client’s wallets. And I think one of the things that we tend to do is we have a certain mindset about our, about what people, what we would spend on something. Um, and we like apply that to our clients. So, you know, I, I definitely did that in the early days. I’m like, I wouldn’t spend that much on that. So like I can’t charge that much. Right. Yeah. And it’s like, what I would do literally has nothing to do with, with what they would do and we get to price sustainably.
[00:34:40] Shannon: Give people a choice of whether or not they want to pay that price or not. There’s always someone that will say yes, there are always someone that will say no, it’s our job to just make sure we’re taking care of us as designers. Because if we can’t, if we’re not taking care of ourselves financially, then we are stressed. We’re burnt out. We’re not doing our best work. Our clients suffer because of it. Like, it’s good for everybody involved for you to like charge appropriately.
[00:35:11] Josh: I love that quote of stay out of your client’s wallets. Yeah. A lot of my, a lot of my students who I’ve worked with in my web design club, when I’m coaching them through, through the club and we talk about a really serious point of like raising your rates, I’ve heard a lot of them tell me my, my clients are never gonna pay that.
[00:35:30] Josh: Um, number one, you don’t know that a lot of clients will actually pay that. Especially if you articulate your value. Number two, Maybe they aren’t your best clients anymore. And you told me something when we met, which with your programs, because they’re a much higher tier, um, you are attracting a different type of client with higher rates versus keeping your rates low and attracting those low clients that is just, that’s monumental.
[00:35:56] Josh: As soon as you raise your rates, you will, you will be with better clients. So, and, and I understand the, the reality of like a lot of people are maybe new to the journey and they feel like maybe I can’t get quite there yet, but I mean, that’s why you have your program. That’s why I have my courses. There are so many resources out there to get you to a point where I firmly believe you don’t need to be an expert in web design to charge to three, four, $5,000. You can get there pretty quick with just some basic knowledge, because the basic stuff you learn in web design will help clients dramatically grow their business online, like basic level SEO, basic level design, basic level conversion, and you are so worth an average of $3,000 or more. I feel.
[00:36:40] Shannon: Yeah, I absolutely. And I’m like, think about what your client is able to create with what the, with the tool that you’ve given them, that they weren’t able to create before. So. Like you said, if you, you have the skill to build the thing, right? Why would you not charge to where, you know, like they, they’re going to create a return on their investment in this, you know, if I build them a $3,000 website, how long is it gonna take them with their business model to go out and recoup that $3,000 and 10 exit?
[00:37:13] Shannon: So that’s how I, I, we, we talk about the rule of 10 in our, in our program. And I learned this from a woman named Aisha Crumbine, who has a completely different business model, but she was talking about the rule of 10 when you’re deciding, um, as the consumer on like, what are, am I, is this worth the investment to me or not? And the questions to ask yourself, she said, will this, will I be able to recoup my investment within six months of, of. This, this outgo and how long will it take me to 10 exit?
[00:37:48] Shannon: And, you know, if those timeframes are reasonable to me, then I’m all in. And I’m like, think about that. When you’re thinking about pricing for, for your clients, like how long will it take them to make back the 3000 that they paid you? How long will it take them to 10 X? Because. Now they have the tool that you created for them that they didn’t have before.
[00:38:08] Josh: Yes. That’s something I tell a lot of my students and I talk through my business course, which is if you frame your pricing in terms of results for your clients yes. And actually get to the numbers, be like, okay, $5,000 website. Let’s say, you’re like, if you talk to this business and you’re like, ah, you know, that’s a big, that’s a big investment, but let’s look at your clients. Let’s say your business, your average client over like a year pays you a thousand dollars in, in your services and stuff. Then it’s only gonna take five clients in that first year.
[00:38:41] Josh: And maybe that first month, if the, if the website converts five people to recoup that cost, and then it’s all profit from there. And as that continues and it evolves, that might be a return on investment that’s monthly or weekly. So that’s, that’s how I learned to better articulate my pricing to clients. Do you have any other tips on like how it wants somebody feels comfortable or maybe they’re not even comfortable, but they’re gonna put a $5,000 price tag on their builds or, or even more like, what are some of the other tips that you’ve learned to help with actually selling that higher price point?
[00:39:13] Shannon: Oh, I mean, everything you just said is what I wish I would’ve known as a, as a young little web designer, um, starting out, but definitely other tips, um, like just go through your website and do an audit and stop saying you’re the most affordable price you have options for any budget, like, like stop positioning yourself as the cheapest best option. Focus on quality focus on results, but don’t focus on like, oh, I’m the best value for the money?
[00:39:46] Shannon: Like when you, when you say things like that, you’re, you’re attracting people who are looking for the best deal, you know, and you’re also really, um, you’re really anchoring them low in terms of like what they’re gonna expect for a price when you, when you get to that point with them. So I know that it feels very tempting, especially when you’re new to be like, well, how do I, you know, it’s when it’s like my coach Mariah says, like, you’re very much up in someone else’s wallet when you’re trying to be the most affordable choice, you’re helping them stay within their budget. Like all of these things, it’s like.
[00:40:26] Shannon: That is not what your, your role as the web designer is not to save them money it’s to create them more money. Oh. And help them create more money. That’s yeah. So charge, charge, charge at a level that they are committed, that it wasn’t solo, that they just are like, well, I’m not gonna, I’m gonna wait 30. We could talk at, this would be a whole nother episode, but like that they feel like they are just not super motivated to get the project done. Like, there’s gotta be a little stretchiness for them and their commitment to follow through, to, to work with you, to complete the project quote. And when you undercharge, it’s not there.
[00:41:05] Josh: Oh, quarter of the day, your goal as a web designer is not to save your client money it’s to make them money. That’s it? That is what it’s all about when it comes to raising your rates and, and pricing. I, I love, and that’s a big mindset shift too. I mean, really, I know I, this, I probably, you know, like. Well, you’re out in the country. You say beat a dead horse is that it’s terrible expression, but that’s what they say, right.
[00:41:27] Josh: They’re might out here, but yeah, yeah. Um, the thing I say this all the time, but that it’s all about mindset. Like, and we could talk too about like client mindset too, and their mindset with money. But the big thing is you, you don’t wanna win the race to the bottom with cheapest pricing. Yes. I put cheap web design in my first ad.
[00:41:45] Josh: When I put one on, on Craigslist, guess what clients, I got really cheap clients and it was terrible. So yeah, positioning is huge. And you don’t need to say like, I am the absolute best web designer ever. You just need to not position yourself as cheap websites. And luckily, a another big, like mindset thing I had to get over is that I don’t need every lead that comes through.
[00:42:07] Josh: I know it’s tempting early on. My big mindset shift was that I had to realize that when leads come through the door, I am not. Or I need to not position myself to try to work with them and get their business. They need to see if they align with me. That was like the most important thing I had to learn.
[00:42:25] Josh: And when I shifted my business, my mentality of when a lead came through, went from like, oh, this person came through. I hoped I, I, I land their business to, okay. I gotta lead. Let’s make sure they’re funneled to the correct place. Let’s make sure they’re even in the same wheelhouse with pricing and then we can move forward and let’s see if they’ll be a good fit for us.
[00:42:44] Josh: Just like we’re a good fit for them. Um, when did you get to that point where you learned to like funnel? I have, so, I mean, so many questions and thoughts on this, but did, when did you implement any sort of like funneling to like weed out the bad fit clients?
[00:43:01] Shannon: Not in that first 18 months where I was just saying yes to everything and charging $22 an hour and whatever that was, that was not don’t do anything like that. but when I really started doing that was at the, um, at the consultation phase. So, okay. Before you were even able to book a spot on my calendar, you had to fill out a form and answer and answer questions. And so I would ask things about like, where are you at in your, in your business? Tell me about your, you know, tell me about your business.
[00:43:35] Shannon: Um, like I go back and forth on this question, um, like, what is your budget for this project? I go back and forth on whether we ask this because sometimes I feel like it, can you, when you ask this question, you take away your own opportunity to preframe the value if they were, if they, um, Uh, if you like, if yeah, I say, if you wanna ask it, leave it an open-ended box don’t pre suggest ranges for them. Like, don’t be like zero to 2500 2500 to 5,005 to 10, just like literally leave it an open box and let them put in a number that they think because, or they might just say, I don’t know, or whatever,
[00:44:20] Shannon: Because if you put in their minds what the pricing is going to be before you talk to them, that that’s gonna be what they’re expecting to see.
[00:44:30] Josh: I totally agree. I ne I’ve never liked the approach of asking, like, so what’s your budget. I mean, in an ideal world, if somebody’s like 10,000 and you’re used to charging two, it’s like, whoa, okay, now I can charge 10. But once you get to a place where you want to control the factors, you really. Again, and, and a lot of people could probably spend way more than 10 if they view it as an investment and not a cost, which is really what we’re, what we’re getting into.
[00:44:54] Josh: And like, we’ve already talked about the mindset of like showing results and what this asset, this website is gonna do for them and what it can do for their business. So, yeah, I’ve always been against asking what’s your budget. Um, what, I, I forget if we talked about this, but I, what I show in my business course and what always worked for me well is to have a very, very easy, simple funneling system, which is basically to say everyone comes through the contact form.
[00:45:21] Josh: If it’s. If it’s, it really goes to either questionable or qualified. If there’s somebody who I get a feel for like, oh, I don’t think they’re gonna even be in this realm. They’re a, you know, uh, they just started, they’re not an established business, $2,500, which was my minimum. It’s not even gonna work. I’ll send them to what I call my potential client page.
[00:45:41] Josh: And it has not my exact pricing, but my ranges, my tiers to say, like, if you’re in this tier, it starts at 2502nd tier starts at 5003rd tier starts at, you know, 9,000 plus. That’s what always works for me because then if somebody went there, they’re like, oh, I can’t not even interested. But that person who might be like, okay, well I was thinking like 2000, but you know? Yeah. Maybe, maybe that first tier would work. And then once we get the conversation started, oh, actually they’re the middle tier. And once I describe to them that, listen, you get five clients at a thousand dollars, you’ve already made this up and they’re like, hit me. I’m going for the third tier, you know, like that, that’s what at least worked for me.
[00:46:19] Josh: For pricing. Did you, and do you advise your students to have any sort of like funneling or like weeding out system like that? Or, I mean, there’s so many ways to go about this. Some people don’t even like talk to, to anybody. Some people still will do a phone call and then weed out. I guess the question is what’s your weed out process look like?
[00:46:37] Shannon: Yeah. I love that idea and I never thought about doing that and I think it’s brilliant and genius.
[00:46:45] Josh: You can add it to your program and gimme 10% we’ll call it.
[00:46:46] Shannon: You’re gonna come in and do a guest training for us.
[00:46:49] Josh: I love to, you’re doing one for me in August 22. So I would love to do one for you.
[00:46:52] Shannon: I love that. I think it’s brilliant. We actually, like, I, I always said like, fill out this form and, and schedule a consultation with me and then like, so they, they have to fill out the form, but they’re able to schedule the consultation. I have set days and set times where, where I do the consultations. If I got a form in that was like all kinds of red flags, I would just.
[00:47:16] Shannon: I would decline to even have the consultation with them. I would just say, Hey, I wanna save, um, I, I respect your time. I read over your form. I don’t believe that I’m the best fit for your project. Um, if I wanted to say, here’s where, you know, here’s where the disconnect is or whatever, I wouldn’t usually get too detailed in it, but like, thank you so much for your interest.
[00:47:38] Shannon: And I would send them on their way. Um, but a lot of times, like, especially in the beginning, I liked to practice like having those conversations. And it was, it was like an opportunity to do market research too, to figure out like, okay, even though this client seems a little sketchy through this form and like not who I wanna work with, I’m going to talk to this person so I can figure out what to say to.
[00:48:07] Shannon: Not talk to them, like in my copy and in my marketing and all of that’s a good point in the early days, I kind of used it as like, how am I gonna position myself to repel these people and attract these people? Um, but yeah, I do think there becomes a point, which. Is exactly what you’re saying. It’s like, I am going to kind of automate this process of this filtering process and just really spend my time talking to best fit clients. I think it’s genius. I love it.
[00:48:39] Josh: And I think it’s a great point that you mentioned there, because I think a lot of people, when they hear that they wanna immediately jump into automating everything and, and doing that. But the reality is, especially in the beginning, you’re probably not gonna get that many leads. So I think it’s very worthwhile. Yeah. Having a little more of a time intensive approach in the beginning, but not for long. Just yeah. Get it feel for your clients because you’ll know really quickly.
[00:49:00] Josh: I mean, I got to the point where I could read two sentences of an email and I know exactly whether it’s a qualified or questionable lead, then they get the link. It’s I, I use that approach now with even my podcast. If people ask to be on pretty quickly, I can find out like this is not sun. I feel comfortable. Sharing a, a message with my audience versus, okay. Shannon seems legit. Let’s talk. And then we go from there.
[00:49:23] Josh: So yeah, I think that, you know, there’s so many different ways to weed out, but which is a huge step with pricing cuz then the other aspect is, and I’m curious on your thoughts on this is the age old question from the day websites were invented. Should you add pricing on your website? What’s your, what’s your thoughts on that?
[00:49:41] Shannon: No. All right. I say, no, I used to say yes. I said yes, up until like last year I was like, how about we keep, how about we, you know, um, how about we like weed out the people who are just never gonna pay us that much. I changed my mind cuz I’m like we have the opportunity to elevate in our client’s mind what this is actually worth.
[00:50:05] Shannon: Yes. Right? Yes. So I am such a, um, and I don’t think it’s every web designer’s job to, you know, change the mind of every single. Expense minded client that comes along and help them start to see their website as a, as an asset and an investment rather than a, a cost. Like I’m not saying that every web designer has to like take on that, um, take on that charge, right?
[00:50:31] Shannon: Yeah. But I’m like, why not let them experience my incredible on like consultation process, my thoughtful questions, like this amazing experience of me even getting to the point where I’m gonna tell them the price. So. When we get there, like, they’re like, wow, this has already been a really great experience.
[00:50:50] Shannon: Okay. I could see maybe why I would be paying more, but if I didn’t let them experience all of that leading up to working with me, they would’ve just weeded themselves out of the, the possibility of getting to work with someone amazing as us or you because they got scared of a price.
[00:51:09] Josh: Such a good point. I learned that you want, when people see the proposal and they see total investment, which I always recommend calling it investment and not total cost. Yes, you can. You’ll still get clients, but there’s a big mental change there between investment costs. Mm-hmm, , I’ve always learned, I’ve learned, I’ve always told my students that you wanna get to the point where when they see that number, they are not thinking about that going out of their bank account and then trying to save money.
[00:51:35] Josh: They, they need to see that and be like, okay, this is the starting point so that we can make so much more money. Like this is the step that’s gonna get us to bringing this in maybe every month or, you know, every core, whatever it is. So, yeah, there’s, I mean, we’re, you’re, you’re hitting on an interesting point because there’s our mindset.
[00:51:54] Josh: But once we get past that, then we need to kind of frame it so our clients understand the value. And again, there’s so many ways to weed out. I totally agree. I don’t recommend having your pricing up front on your website. However, my model and my recommendation is to have kind of a hidden way about it and that potential client page, a lot of people call it, you call it a weed out page.
[00:52:16] Josh: You could call, uh, April Ray one of my awesome students, she I think hers is called a good fit page, which is really cool. Um, or like, let’s see if we’re right together kind of page, like mm-hmm, , it just lays out those things that a lot of people would probably have on there, but it’s just for the questionable people because often, and it may be different for you, Shannon, because was it your DIY PLA was your program that was getting a lot of clients elsewhere because most of my clients were local until I started getting clients nationally and abroad. But was it that program that brought people from, from online. Okay.
[00:52:47] Shannon: Yeah, it was that DIY program that brought people in from everywhere, every different kind of business, like, so, so it was, it, it was a challenge to like, say that I had, you know, this set price because it could be, it could be different for different types of business owners too. So it’s like also, um, you know, I loved your loved your comment earlier about having a minimum. And I’m like, if you have a starting this, this is also challenging.
[00:53:15] Shannon: I like putting, I like your idea of putting it on like a good fit page because I don’t wanna anchor you low. I don’t wanna say starting at 2,500, and now my proposal that I’ve given you is 10,000 and you’ve already started to expect like this the 25 and then I hit you with, with 10,000. But I, I feel like I want my clients to feel by the time I tell them that price, that they are not giving me that money. That like, I’m just like holding onto it for them until they like make it back and like 10 exit. Right. Like I don’t, I want them to feel like they’re spending that money on themselves and not giving it to me. And, and if, if I’m just putting a price somewhere, like I don’t get. To lead them through that thought transformation in my consultation process.
[00:54:04] Josh: That that is it. You, you don’t give them a chance when you have your pricing right up front, particularly if it’s like, this is our price. I always like starting at, because it adds some ambiguity to what it could expand to. I also love the idea of like a good, better, best pricing model. That way people can see like, okay, small sites are the first tier, most medium sites are the middle tier and en larger eCommerce, bigger sites are the top tier. That’s like a $10,000 plus deal. It gives them a chance to figure out where they sit and then they can move forward.
[00:54:32] Josh: And then you can explain more value, but then the people who are never gonna go to that top tier are like, yeah, let’s just do the $2,500 range for now. You get them on hosting and maintenance. Boom, you got a good client for a while. Um, that’s the biggie, but when it came to like weeding out. One point I wanted to make is that you had a different business model to where pretty much everyone was coming in, uh, not blind, but like you didn’t have an existing relationship with them.
[00:54:57] Josh: My model was for, for the longest time was such that I did so much networking and in person stuff that most of my leads were referrals and organic. So I didn’t really need to weed that much. I did get a lot of people blindly going through Google or finding me online and going through the contact form. But I say that to say, I would meet somebody at a networking group and I would be like, okay, this dude, this dude is not I’m, he’s not, I’m pretty sure he is not gonna go for this. He gets the potential client page when I email him. Whereas I might meet somebody who’s like a great person. And in some cases, you know, they might be.
[00:55:34] Josh: A really established company. I’m like, okay, they are, they don’t need my to see my starting at ranges. We’re going right to the proposal cuz they’re legit and I can go right into the value. So, um, so many ideas on how to funnel and, and weed out. I don’t wanna spend too much time on this, but it’s so crucial for pricing because it’s like, it’s so good.
[00:55:51] Josh: When do you, when do you price? How do you price? Do you put it out there? Uh, yeah, so I love that. I love, I love your approach too, though, of really trying to be intentional about nurturing, like the value and, and showcasing that. But like you said, that that’s not for everybody. You, every client should not be your, like every person in the world should not be your customer. That’s a really important metric to understand, but when you’re early on, that’s the mindset. Yeah,
[00:56:18] Shannon: Yes exactly. It’s like, oh, I need to get this person to say yes, like I need to book this, this client or whatever. And you know, and there’s almost like this continuum that you go through. And I think what you and I are both trying to do is like speed people up on their journey through this continuum faster, fast track, faster, because there’s a point at which you’re like when people say, no, you make it mean something about you and that your prices are too high or that you need to change.
[00:56:44] Shannon: And it’s like, we have got to like stop marketing ourselves by talking about ourselves, stop making our clients’ decisions, mean something about our ourselves and our value. It’s all not personal them. It’s not personal. It’s all about them. Your marketing should be all about your client’s results, your, their decisions. You know, obviously we wanna like glean feedback where it’s helpful to improve and, and things like that, but like their decision to spend not to not. Think of it as an investment or not make the investment is no reflection on your, you know, your worth as a human, you know?
[00:57:22] Shannon: And so it is, it’s like this, it almost feels like this journey that we all have to go on and some people get some people skip ahead and that’s amazing. And some people take a while to like figure out how they wanna think about things and, and everything. But yeah, not. Person out there who needs a website is going to be the right fit for you and your business. And you get to hold, hold your standards high. You wouldn’t just like go out on a date with every single person that asked you out on a date. You would have some criteria probably for who you, who you choose to spend your time with.
[00:58:02] Josh: In most cases, I have some friends from high school where that was the case, and it’s a sad story once you get in your thirties right.
[00:58:09] Shannon: Sure. Yeah.
[00:58:10] Josh: Yeah. And it’ll be an even Sader story when that’s your business mindset cuz you won’t be in business. So right. No, I, I love that. It’s so true. And I was even thinking, I mean, definitely you, you have to get used to not everyone being your client and not appeasing everyone, but you also have to get used to rejection. Um, I learned early on to not take it personal if someone declined the proposal and it, I, I get it.
[00:58:35] Josh: It hurts particularly when there was a project that you really wanted. I remember one in particular for a local manufacturing, like lighting company here. It was at the, the peak of when I was scaling, all my processes were dialed in. I was so confident, but there was this $15,000 project that we didn’t get. I thought for sure we were gonna get it. And luckily the guy was really cool and he was like, Hey Josh, we, you and your team, like, we loved your stuff. We just, there was a company that gave us an actual mockup of this site and, and we really liked it. So that’s what persuaded us. And I was like, dang it.
[00:59:06] Josh: Then I learned, maybe it’s worthwhile for a really good project doing a mockup. That’s a little more intensive than, uh, some of the other processes I had. But anyway, um, you gotta get used to the hearing those nos. And I’m kinda curious. Did you ever, when you started raising your rates to that, like 5,000 range, did you get people that were like offended and told you like absolutely. No. What was your experience when you hit a different level of client?
[00:59:30] Shannon: I can’t remember anyone being like super offended. I remember them just saying like, whoa, that is way more than I ever expected to pay. And I can find someone on one of those freelancer platforms to do it for a lot less. And my, like at first I would be like, oh, I knew it I’m charging too much, you know? But then I, uh, got coaching and, uh, and really started to just say, Hey, that’s great. Um, I hope you find the perfect person for your project. If anything changes, please feel free, free to reach out. And if I have some time on my development calendar, we can talk, we can talk about your project, but I’m just basically like, I am not going to try to convince you.
[01:00:21] Shannon: Yes. Yeah. That I, that like, I’m not gonna, I’m not gonna lower my price. A I’m not gonna like negotiate with you. This is, this is what it is. But if you say, well, my budget’s 2,500, I’d be like, okay, well, here’s what we can do for 2,500, but it’s not what I was gonna do for you at 5,000. Mm-hmm , you know, so you, I, I never had anybody like, how dare you, but I had people confused because they, because as you know, prices for web design is all over the board.
[01:00:56] Josh: Right. All over.
[01:00:58] Shannon: And it’s hard to say, well, this guy’s not gonna do this for you, but I will cuz they might. And they just might ha be undercharging. And you know, so I just try to, preframe the value of working with me so much in the front end that like. Your experience getting a proposal from this. Person’s not gonna be nearly as amazing as it was from me.
[01:01:20] Josh: Yeah. And look, I had a lot of clients that got multiple proposals and I had some that were like, you were the top, like you were the most expensive. I had a lot. We were like, yeah. You’re about like midrange. Um, and that’s fine. It’s it? That is going to be the case. That question that a lot of clients asked though, it’s it’s always like how much is a website?
[01:01:36] Josh: I’m like, how much is a car? It, it depends how much is a house. It depends on so many factors. So, and look, I get that web design. I think the danger of the market now, because of like do it yourself type website builders and WICS and whatever is that websites have appeared as commodities. So I think personally, our biggest challenge as web designers in 2022 on is to frame our services, not as commodities, like talk about those results.
[01:02:08] Josh: Websites are a really big part of those results, but there’s a lot of other variables and factors. I, I think that’s the way to get, to be able to charge those more premium rates doesn’t mean that they need to be huge projects. It’s just a premium rate. That’s probably a distinction. I think you’ve talked about and learned, learned with your students too, is you can still charge a lot more.
[01:02:27] Josh: It doesn’t mean that you need to work. 10 times more hours, but you know, that, that idea of like a website as a commodity, I think that’s the biggest challenge for, for a lot of web designers now to overcome. I’m actually kinda curious, like, Five $10,000 ranges. Um, have you seen with a lot of your students and just with your pulse on the market now, have you seen averages of websites on average? Now? I know it’s kind of a hard question, but maybe it’s like what a client would ask, like what are websites going for now? Um, Yeah, BA I just gave you a client question, but what would, what would you say to that?
[01:03:04] Shannon: I would say, I mean, and audit, it depends, right? What is the level of service I’m providing? You know, in a, like, am I, am I working with you on strategy? Am I a consultant? Am I a solution? Architecting? Am I solving business problems? Um, you know, that is a very different level of service than, um, you know, here are the deliverables you requested and I’m building those and these deliverables do solve a problem for you, but you came to like, we’re not working that, that deeply.
[01:03:35] Shannon: So it’s almost like, you know, I would like. On average, what I see with our clients, like when they are not doing like ongoing, like traffic lead generation strategy and stuff, you know, at the high level consulting and solution architecting and, and stuff for like a, like a small business, 10,000. But if they, you know, anywhere between like five and 10, I know that’s kind of like a range, but it’s like, how much are you relying on me to solution architect and, and, you know, solve problems and create cons concepts and all this, or how much are you bringing it to me?
[01:04:17] Shannon: And I’m just gonna bring your vision to life. I it’s, it’s just different. Yeah, it’s just different. But like our on average, our students are booking like 75 to $10,000 projects. And then we have our year two next level students where they’re shifting into like $20,000 websites for multiple six figure companies with, you know, So it just, it just depends.
[01:04:42] Josh: And they, no, that’s a great answer.
[01:04:43] Shannon: The process is dialed so that they are not, they don’t have the golden handcuffs on .
[01:04:48] Josh: Yeah, that look that’s it. That, that’s a great answer, cuz I’m just I’m I’m cur obviously, like I said, it depends on what other variables are in the mix. What other services you do, but websites themselves with like go best practices. Good conversion, good design. Basic SEO, good decent copywriting. That’s kind of what I picture. A a good foundation for a website. Yeah, I I’ve seen, and I’ve found that at least most of my students are in the same range too. Whereas like 5,000 is a pretty happy medium. Yeah. There’s some that are maybe newer in the journey.
[01:05:21] Josh: They’re charging 2000, 2,500 ish, which is fine for some starting starting businesses and, and starting clients. But it does seem like that five to 10,000 range is a sweet spot. That’s kind of what you want to get to. And then, like you said, that next level is the, the 10 K plus cause look, you gotta think about it like this.
[01:05:40] Josh: I’m not, not talking to you. Shane I’m talking every web designer, the collective view, the collective view, if you are charging a thousand dollars and you wanna make six figures, guess how many websites you have to design to make six figures that year 100 websites that is an absurd amount of clients that you would need to get.
[01:06:00] Josh: And like we just talked about. That’s not what you’re taking home. That’s what is the, in the business total, you got taxes, expenses all your other time. You’ll be lucky if you walk away with $60,000 that year. So, um, yeah, I was just kind of curious about the, those ranges it’s and going back to the very beginning, we talked about like, what do you wanna make?
[01:06:19] Josh: And you talked about personally, what do I want to bring home? I always talk with a lot of my students, particularly those who join my web design club. And usually one of the first questions I ask is what do you personally wanna take home? Yeah, because a lot of people jump into how much did I charge for websites, but I’m like a lot of factors we could talk about services offerings, but it really need to get a feel for like, Okay, where are you at in your journey?
[01:06:42] Josh: We can level you up really quickly. Go through my courses in a couple months, you can charge 2,500 at minimum, but what do you want to take home? Because once we figure out what you wanna take home and an ideal goal, then we can put all the things in place around that to make sure that’s the goal to, to get that.
[01:06:59] Josh: I’m curious from like a, uh, a goal standpoint with money. . How do you feel about, and how have you helped your students like reach well over what they think they’re worth in those goals? For example, I had one student in 2021 who’s told me her goal was $50,000 and I won’t name, I won’t name drop her here, but I said, you are worth way more than that in your business.
[01:07:24] Josh: And I was like, you could be at six figures. And she was like, I can’t even think about that right now. I said, well, how about this? Let’s meet in the middle. And let’s say 75,075. Thousand’s your goal for 2021? She’s like, okay, I I’ll make it. My goal. She’s a little hesitant, but she did that. And guess what she ended up with at the end of 2021.
[01:07:43] Shannon: Okay. I, it was like, I’m sure she blew it out of the water.
[01:07:45] Josh: Well, it was 76. It was like, it was like 76,000 some. So it was like just over the goal that I had set for her and then she was like, okay, six figures, here we come. Because that’s that. But it just, it took that like, think about your goal, think about what you want, what you’re worth, and then just reach right past that.
[01:08:03] Josh: And I know there are a lot of people who shoot so high that they don’t even come close. You feel like a failure, but I’ve found there’s a lot of power in like reaching just over what you want. What are your thoughts about that? Shannon.
[01:08:14] Shannon: I love that. And, um, , you know, my, my business coach Maria cause says, okay, think about what you want. And then she goes, and then add a zero. And I’m like, that breaks my brain. Like, I can’t quite, I can’t quite with that yet. It, it like, I’m, I’m getting there, but I love that. Like you’re like, okay, well like think about what the craziest number you think is possible, which for her was 50,000 and it’s just like add 50%.
[01:08:41] Shannon: I I’ll say like now double it, like who do you have to become that you’re not already to create that result. And they can’t ever think of an answer because they already are that person. Right. And so it’s like, who do you have to become to create that? And, and then, then it’s always like, well, I need to learn more. I need to take another, uh, skills course. I need to do this. And it’s like, I’m not disputing that you, that we always need to like brush up on our skills. But how about you find, how about you? Like. Do that on the job, right? How about you? Figure it out. You’re a web designer. Figure it out. You’re where to go.
[01:09:19] Shannon: Like with within reason, like if someone said, Hey, I need you to build an app for me. I’m not gonna be like, sure. I can do that. Like, I’ve never done it before. It’s not something that I would, um, Just say I could do if I literally had never tried ever.
[01:09:33] Josh: Absolutely.
[01:09:34] Shannon: Yeah. but, um, it’s like, who do you need to become that you’re not already? What do you think you have to do to create that let’s debunk all of that because most of it’s not true. If there is something that we do get to work on, let’s put a plan in place, um, to do that. But most often it’s just our own, um, limitations of what we think is possible to create, um, 50,000 or 75,000 or, or even six figures.
[01:10:04] Shannon: And so I, I love what you do as a coach and a podcaster and everything to really just like you have a mission of just showing people that they’re worth so much more than, than what they think, and that can. Elevate everybody.
[01:10:20] Josh: I have so appreciate that, Shannon. That is my goal, quite honestly. And the, the tagline and the description for the show is to ha build a design business that gives you freedom and a lifestyle you love. How do you do that? You have to make a lot more money than you’re probably making right now. So it really, you know, that’s, I I’d probably get a whole different crowd of, it was like the make more money web design show, but, uh, , it really is, you know, that that’s so important, but it also comes back to, I mean, just, gosh, there’s so many just mentality and mindset things in regards to worth goals, money, mindset, and all that.
[01:10:54] Josh: But what I have found is that if you have a financial goal that you wanna bring home personally, and that you wanna make for your business, some people. Don’t agree with this. And that’s fine. There’s a lot of different schools of thought on this, but I, I do like having a financial goal. Some people say, don’t have that, just get your services and whatever, and then you you’ll wake, you won’t limit yourself.
[01:11:17] Josh: However, I love having the idea of like, okay, I wanna make six figures for this year. That will snap something in your mind that suddenly rearranges the way you look at your months and your weeks to where it’s like, okay, I need to make sure my pricing gets to me a point where on average, I’ll make this, this week and this, this month, and then this, this quarter, and then you can evaluate, and then you can pivot, get things better for the next quarter.
[01:11:45] Josh: And then you’re on your way to six figures. Um, that’s at least what I learned in my journey was having that goal and always reaching right outside. That goal always kept my momentum going because there are in web design, no matter how many recurring services you have, it’s it is seasonal. Like it is that same person who I just mentioned at seven, uh, 76 or whatever. In the beginning of 20, 22, she had very low months. And she was like, I don’t know what happened. I I’m doing everything the same. I didn’t change anything. But now it’s like, I had this huge momentum we’re starting off 20, 22 kind of small, but, uh, Springtime. She had two of her biggest months ever in her business.
[01:12:26] Josh: So it does come in waves. I guess the next question I have for you is like, as a web designer, you’re working on your pricing, your mindset, how do you balance the highs and lows of, of financials in, in business?
[01:12:39] Shannon: Oh, my gosh. It’s just even a web designer, business owner, whatever. Like, I, I, I like to have a three month runway. And so that’s for me, um, that is what feels comfortable in my business. A three month runway of like paying myself and, and paying, um, paying my expenses. And that took a while to, to, to build up to, um, but I, I mean, we could get nerdy on budgeting, but I use YAB. You need a budget to plan out all my future expenses.
[01:13:12] Shannon: Um, and like the revenue that’s coming in. I love exactly what you said. I totally agree that you. Like a financial goal is very important. And then just starting to take action to gather data, to figure out what actions to take, to reach that goal. Like how many clients do I need to talk to, to book one project?
[01:13:32] Shannon: You know, how many leads do I need to create to create those conversations? And you can get pretty structured in terms of like, okay, I know I need to go out, talk to five people to book, book, this many projects, um, when you’re charging sustainably and you’re charging enough and you’re charging, you know, um, I don’t wanna say appropriately, but like what works for you?
[01:13:57] Shannon: Then you can weather those, those storms. If you’re charging enough, if you are under charging and over delivering and you are, um, uh, because like you said, to make a hundred thousand dollars, a, a thousand dollars a website, you need a hundred websites. Like how many clients do you have to actually talk to, to create a hundred websites?
[01:14:18] Shannon: Great point. So many that is so much time on marketing. You have to talk to way less people to, you know, sell a 5,000 or a $10,000 website if you are, if you’re talking in terms of results and solutions. And so, I don’t know if I answered your question, but it’s great. I say you have to charge enough to give yourself a runway, um, so that when you have a low month.
[01:14:45] Shannon: You have the funds there to fill in, um, in the low month and the funds come from those high months. So you don’t like have the high month and then just like, go blow it all and then hope to re well, I mean, that’s just me, you do your money, how you do it, but I’m super conservative in terms of watching, like planning and, and feature planning and forecasting and stuff, but like, yeah, you just.
[01:15:11] Shannon: Let, if you know that baseline here, here’s how much I wanna pay myself. Here are my expenses. Here’s taxes. And I make twice as much as that one month. And you know, two thirds of it, the next, like you just always have the steady flow.
[01:15:26] Josh: I, no, that’s a great answer. And that’s one reason I recommend like, figure out your hourly rate, what you wanna take home. And then cuz when people are like, I have no idea what to charge. I understand that was me for a long time. Same. But once you know what you wanna make you figure out your hourly rate, you do a couple projects. You get a feel for how much time you have. Then you can see how much time you’re spending, how much ideally you want to get to you factor in your expenses, blah, blah, blah, boom.
[01:15:50] Josh: There’s there’s our averages. And I’ve found like we talked about, once you get to the 5,000 range on average for a lot of projects, that’s usually enough to get to a nice six figure business. Yep. And then you can get to that next level. That’s what I experience. And that’s what I teach. And the reason I ask that too, is I feel like a lot of people who are just starting to raise their rates is soon as they have a low month, they’re like, oh no, I knew I should have kept my rates low.
[01:16:13] Josh: I knew I should have, I gotta go back to doing thousand other websites, but it’s like, no, no, build that runway. You’ll get that confidence. And as business owners, my gosh, let me know. If you agree with this, Shannon, you have got to get used to good weeks and bad weeks and good months and bad months. It is going to happen.
[01:16:31] Josh: I have to tell myself this all the time, cause we’re in a season right now where I feel so bad. I had to cancel the day of when we were supposed to meet in person because we were getting ready to move into our new house. I know summer 20, 22 is gonna be a very low summer for us because. There’s so much going on personally right now, but I had luckily built up enough runway and we’re also selling our old house, which now makes me wanna get into real estate.
[01:16:56] Josh: Good God. um, I know like we’re gonna be fine for a while. Come fall. I’m ready to hit it. It’s gonna be a massive fall. I’m very sure of that. Um, but that’s what I’ve found like as business owners, you just have to build that runway and your pricing don’t I guess the moral of the story here is don’t let those bad months affect your pricing and your worth and your value, cuz that can really derail a business.
[01:17:21] Shannon: Yeah. And I feel like, you know, just even reframing how we talk about it is like a good month and a bad month. It’s just like a month. Like, this is what I, this is this, these are the actions that I took this month to create this revenue this month. Um, and these are the actions I took in this month to create like, what was different if I did all, all things the same.
[01:17:43] Shannon: And, and I still had a, uh, I made less money than I, than I wanted to like, you know, then, okay, well, like what can I do to go create some more money if I really need to make money? Um, but like putting that judgment on it is like, oh, it was a bad month. It’s it creates fear in you. And then you start doing stuff.
[01:18:03] Shannon: That is really gonna like throw you off your game, like lowering your prices or taking on those, taking on those small projects that end up eating all of your time so that you didn’t go and create a new five or $10,000 client because you were too busy working on this $2,000 one, cuz you got scared. Cuz you said it was a bad month.
[01:18:22] Shannon: So it’s just so important to. Really look at like, what actions am I taking to create results and not like, wait on things to happen and be really intentional. And I’m all about like data driven. Like you feel like, oh, I’m doing all the things and nothing’s happening and I’m not getting clients, but if you actually look at it, you’re like, oh wait, I did actually like get three jobs and I, you know, Whatever.
[01:18:50] Shannon: So, yeah, it’s just, it’s so important how we talk to ourselves about things, um, to cuz it’s hard to run a business in the best way, right. In the most rewarding way. Um, and so we have to be our own best advocate.
[01:19:07] Josh: And it’s interesting. So with this podcast I use buzz sprout, which that’s where all the audio gets uploaded, goes out to all the directories and everything. And I get weekly reports on, on listens and same thing. Just like web design projects. I have, uh, let me not say good man and bad months, but I have higher months and lower months. Yeah. So sometimes naturally I’m like, oh, if. A lower week. I’m like, was it a bad episode? Was it a bad interview? Was it not great?
[01:19:34] Josh: Am I losing the pizazz of the show where, and then in the next week I’ll be like, oh man, crazy. Uh, but what I’ve learned, the reason I say that is in the stats and buzz sprout, you can look at the actual numbers statistically, but then there’s an option to look at it cumulatively. So you just see the general arc.
[01:19:56] Josh: And as long as that arc is going up into the right. You’re good. we’ll have those low points. You’ll have those high points, but it, that was just an interesting more recently. I, I looked at that and I just kind of sat back and I was like, this is so important. This is so important for business owners to think cumulatively, like, and the case of my student, she had a, a very low start to 20, 22.
[01:20:21] Josh: She got a little worried and, and then she asked the question, I think she even asked me, what am I doing wrong? I’m like, yeah, I don’t think you’re doing anything wrong. It just happens for whatever reason. Then spring 20, 22, she’s like, I can’t even keep now I have to scale. I can’t even keep up with all my projects.
[01:20:37] Josh: So it does happen. And, uh, I’ll say that I have that conversation. With people over and over and over and over again. Mm-hmm , it’s, it’s very common. It’s it? Wasn’t just that one person who went through that. Yeah. It’s, that’s replicated. I’m sure you’ve seen it as well, but yeah. Anyway, I just wanted to say the idea of like cumulative results to where like, look at it for me.
[01:20:59] Josh: I try to look things like quarterly or bi-annually or even annually. And as long as. Your business is growing and you’re comfortable with the amount of work you’re putting in and your balance, and you’re happy and your loving life then. Awesome. But get out of that like day to day, week to week mentality. It’s funny. Last story real quick on this, my, uh, my mother-in-law works for a home inspector. She does all his calls and stuff. He used to be a previous client, bless his heart. Uh, he is such a week to week business owner one week. He’s like, oh my gosh, we’re killing it with home inspections, buy new computers, do this.
[01:21:38] Josh: I’m gonna get a vacation house next week. Oh my God, we’re gonna close the doors. We’re gonna lose it. Let’s literally she, I ask her, I’m like, so how’s this week. And she’s like, oh, he’s losing mine. uh, it’s so funny. And I just, I feel like that’s another trap when it comes to pricing that can affect our offers. Mm-hmm we just, we have to avoid that as business owners and web designers.
[01:21:59] Shannon: Yeah. And you know, in those, in those times that your client, and I hear this with mine too, they’re like, I’m doing everything and nothing’s working. It’s like, you are planting seeds that need some time to grow. Sometimes people aren’t always ready when we’re ready. You know, sometimes they’re not always ready when they have a consultation with us, you know, you’re doing the work, you’re building relationships, you’re making connections. You’re, you’re doing all the things to create business people. Don’t always operate on our timeline. So you still have to go out and do those things and create the opportunities.
[01:22:34] Shannon: You don’t always get to control the timeline, um, in which they come to fruition. And so that’s where you have to just trust yourself and trust the process and do what Josh tells you and be patient and. You know, and, and not, not give up and not give into the fear, because what, like, what your client saw happen is like all the seeds that she planted before, like all came together, like all grew at once and now she’s like, oh yeah, like it’s on now.
[01:23:04] Shannon: Let’s do this. Right, right. When she felt like nothing was happening. So that’s our that that is, it’s the seasons like you plant and you harvest and you know, you plant and you harvest and that’s just, we don’t always get to control the timeline of the seasons though.
[01:23:20] Josh: I love that. That’s such great advice. I was gonna ask you what you advise your students when they’re in those droughts. Mm-hmm and when they’re in those slow periods, cuz yeah, I’ve always just said do what you can control just yes, whatever marketing metric worked before. Just do a little extra, like reach back. First of all, I think what I told her is reach out to your current clients and previous clients.
[01:23:40] Josh: Yes. Let ’em know you’re you don’t have to say like, Hey, I’m hurting for work, but just say, Hey, I’ve got a new service or we’re really working on this. Yes. Share some news, some best trends or, or just offer a strategy call. That’s one of the best things you can do is when things are low, you got time on your hands, reach out to your best clients and say, Hey, I just wanted to have a chat about you know your website and maybe just share some ideas and it, that a hundred percent, you will get some awesome work from that. And that will just build that momentum. And then, boom, it’ll, like I said, then those seeds will grow and then you’re swamped. And then you got a whole new set of challenges right.
[01:24:15] Shannon: Or it’s just like reach out and say, Hey, I’d love to know what you’ve got coming up in your business in the next such and such months. And let’s get on a call and chat and you know, and then you can always follow up and say, Hey, I was thinking about that thing. You said, I have some ideas I would, you know, and you get to just reach out like your current clients and people who have told you no before are like your best source of your next client.
[01:24:40] Shannon: Or, Hey, I know you don’t need anything right now, but do you know anyone who I’ve got, you know, a spot open and I am looking for this type of person and they might be like, oh yeah, my buddy, um, was just telling me the other day and you spar, you made them recall something that they weren’t thinking about.
[01:24:57] Shannon: So when you’re coming at it from like a place of service, how can I support you? How can I help you reach your next goal? You don’t feel so like creepy, stalkery annoying, like salesy when you’re genuinely like trying to find opportunities. To help people.
[01:25:14] Josh: That was also a benefit of being in a weekly networking group that I found is like, that was a constant, it didn’t matter if I was slammed. And I felt like I couldn’t even go to the meeting or whether it was like, I’m really low on clients right now. This is my one chance to, you know, really try to get some work. It was like, that was a constant. And if I was in that season, I could always say like, uh, we’re just wrapping up a bunch of projects.
[01:25:39] Josh: We’re really excited about this. Now I’m looking for these type of people. And then that’s how I got a lot of leads. A lot of my colleagues, whether they were clients or just people in my network, they’d be like, oh, I didn’t even think like, yeah, you know, Bob, over at this, this auto is looking for website help.
[01:25:54] Josh: And then that was the next project. So mm-hmm um, yeah, so, so many great lessons here with those highs and lows. And again, you just don’t want to adjust and, and mess with your current offers. Like let those continues. Or I love that you said it’s not an hour timing. We can’t control the seasons. We can’t control what other people are gonna do, but we can control what we offer. And it always am I alone in thinking that it always balances out. Like it always evens out.
[01:26:21] Shannon: It always evens out. As long as you don’t quit, as long as you don’t quit, as long as you don’t like do something rash, like slash your prices by 50% or, and create double the work for yourself, it always evens out. You, you, you do have to be patient. And I think that’s also why it’s so important to not go in alone. You know, you have the club, you have, you know, mentorship community. Don’t try to do this all on your own. It is a lonely, hard, hard road, especially when you fall find yourself kind of getting into the, those, that scary place. It’s so important to have support. Like I will never not have a mentoring line item in my business budget ever again.
[01:27:01] Josh: Oh, I love that. I love that. Yeah. I felt that, um, About two years ago, I had a bit of a, a low fall, which is usually not like September and October. Yeah. Usually pretty good. But for whatever reason, it was just not as good as I was expecting after all the stuff I did. And, uh, my business coach stream shrimp, we have a private messaging thread just like I do in my web design club. And I just messaged him. And I was like, yeah, I was like, numbers are actually quite down these couple months. I’m like, I’m not sure if something changed or if I did anything wrong or weird.
[01:27:30] Josh: And he was like, it might just be the timing he’s like, just keep pushing on. I think he gave me a few different things that he saw was working really well. And I was like, oh, I even think about that. A challenge or a workshop. Yeah. Like, instead of doing some different thing, that’s gonna take way too much time just offer like a free training and educate.
[01:27:48] Josh: And that kind of got me back on track. And then again, even now, so yeah, it’s the principles are the same. Wow. Shannon. Aren’t you glad this aren’t you glad we didn’t commit to just under an hour. This is why I wish podcast go longer.
[01:28:00] Shannon: My, I know we like. We could always talk about these things for hours. I love it.
[01:28:06] Josh: Yeah. I think this is gonna be, uh, one of 80, 89, uh, with Shannon on the podcast. Cuz I think we have so many things we could chat about. You are gonna be doing a, a training in my web design club here. We’re recording this in July, but it’ll be August 20, 22 about uh, pricing matrix. So I can’t wait to see that.
[01:28:23] Josh: I’m I’m gonna show up with my notepad. I know my members are pumped about that. Um, of course anyone listening can join that and, and, and be there for that. Um, so we’ll have links to that in the show notes, but yeah. Shannon, thank you so much for your time. This was, uh, I know we’ve went longer than expected anticipated, but I really appreciate you being open to showing up for, well over an hour and a half now we, we chatted a while before went live and uh, thank the internet gods that the wifi held because you’re out in the middle of nowhere and the wifi is iffy, but it held for us.
[01:28:53] Shannon: Yeah. The online business owner that moved to the country with like horrible internet. Yes. Good moves on my part. But yes, this has been incredible, such a good conversation. And I just really appreciate getting to talk to you about this, cuz it’s just, it’s really fun.
[01:29:09] Josh: Well, let me just get one final thought from you. Let me put like a scenario. So if there’s a, a freelance web designer or agency owner, and they’re like, they’re ready to raise their rates, more pricing has been an issue. They know they’re undervaluing, but they’re just for whatever reason, any of the challenges we mentioned, they’re just hesitant. What would you advise them? What, what, what’s a note of encouragement you would give them.
[01:29:29] Shannon: There, there are always clients out there who are willing to pay more than what your current set of clients is paying. So maybe it’s not so much trying to sell the same clients, higher price things as it is to skew a little bit different into. Into tapping into who is that client that is willing to pay the prices that I want to charge. What do they value? What results can they create? Who are they, where are they at in their business? And how can I really speak to them? And, um, really anchor high and who I’m talking to that doesn’t mean I’m excluding anybody at a lower, um, you know, with a lower budget or, um, you know, different, like a different pricing mindset, but that’s really gonna allow me to like, connect with, um, with that person at that level.
[01:30:22] Shannon: So if you find yourself banging your head against the wall, trying to sell the same people, something more expensive than what they’re used to paying you for. Like, let’s shift a little bit of, of who we’re talking to, and that doesn’t even have to mean bigger projects. It just means. It’s just different.
[01:30:38] Josh: Yeah. Wise words from fellow web design business coach and my complete competition. But I’m happy to say, I consider you a, a friend and, uh, love cooption. So Shannon, Matt do com I love it. And like, yeah, there, I think we talked about this, uh, in all honesty, I recommend people have two coaches. I think that’s one of the most important things you can do is have two different perspectives.
[01:31:03] Josh: You can do this by getting different online courses on the same topic. Yeah. Or going through programs, whatever it is. But two different perspectives. You’ll be able to learn from both and apply what you want. And that could be super powerful. So if I was, if I was starting out, I would have myself and you as a coach and same, I would, we’d be balling.
[01:31:23] Josh: We’d be. We’d be talking about web design pricing sooner, you know, sooner than we thought so. Awesome. Shannon. Well, thank you so much for your time. I’m already excited for round two sometime.
[01:31:33] Shannon: Thank you so much for having me.
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"Josh’s Web Design Business Course has been such a blessing as I transition from graphic design to web design. This info would have taken me YEARS to gather on my own. It has also given me the most important thing I need to get started working with clients – confidence. Josh is a natural at teaching – he explains everything in an easy to understand way, and makes learning enjoyable. I’m so glad I decided to take this course, it truly is the best investment I could have made as I start my web design business.”
“The course is exactly what I have come to expect from Josh – and more. Great content, patient and thorough approach – and no stone is left unturned. Josh will instruct you on everything you’d want to know and also will go over topics you never even thought of. He’s been there and made the mistakes (now you don’t have to) and had the successes (and now you can, too). This course is a MUST for anyone who wants to get serious about making web design into an actual business. Highly recommended!”