How to Raise Real Estate Photography Prices Without Losing Clients
As real estate photographers, one of the most important decisions we’ll make in our business is determining our pricing structure. It’s also one of the most discussed topics in real estate photography circles.
Raising your prices can be a delicate balance, as you don’t want to lose clients but you also want to be fairly compensated.
In this article, we will explore some strategies for raising your real estate photography prices without losing clients or sacrificing your customer base.
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How to Raise Real Estate Photography Prices Without Losing Clients
Real estate photography pricing is one of the most popular topics of discussion in the real estate photography industry. People have some very strongly held opinions, but the truth of the matter is that, eventually, our prices must go up.
Whether it’s because we’ve increased our skill level and the photos we’re producing are worth more money, we’ve become so in demand that we no longer have and free time, or an extraordinary event happens and inflation hits the economy.
There are tons of reasons why your prices need to go up, even if it’s simply to keep up with standard inflation. The questions is, how to best go about raising your prices without losing your clients.
If you are lost as to whether you’re charging enough or not, we have several articles and tools that can help you figure it out.
First, we have a Real Estate Photography Pricing Calculator that should give you a good starting point based on your skill level and market size.
After using the calculator, check out these articles:
Easy Guide to Pricing for Real Estate Photography
Real Estate Photography Industry Recap: Pricing
Once you’ve found the reasoning and confidence to raise your prices, you’ll need to figure out how much to raise your prices and how to (or if you even should) alert your clients.
Should You Tell Your Clients That You're Raising Prices?
There are quite a few options available when it comes to raising your prices. You’ll need to determine which works best for you and your business, and how your clients will react to your prices going up.
Before you do anything in terms of alerting clients to your rising prices, first ask yourself if that’s even necessary… While that might sound like a weird question to ask, think about every other business industry.
Do supermarkets announce when they’re raising prices of food? Do electricians announce when their hourly rate is increasing? Do dentists email you telling you that the price of a dental cleaning is going up?
Clearly, the answer to all of those questions is no. So why are you going to tell your clients that you’re planning to charge them more money? If you find this line of thinking to not be ethical, I can completely understand that.
I’ll outline the best options for both scenarios, whether your choose to tell your clients or not.
Best Options If You Choose to Tell Your Clients
If you do want to alert your clients, here are the best options for raising your real estate photography prices:
Release an Announcement on Your Website
One of the most common ways that real estate photographers raise their prices is by releasing an announcement on their website. It’s a quick way to let everyone know, both current and possible clients, that your prices are going up.
Keep it short, simple, and to the point. “We will be raising prices for all real estate photography services as of * this date * . You can see the new prices by following * this link *”
Email Your Clients Directly
Send emails directly to your clients outlining why you’re raising your prices and include a link to the new pricing structure. Again, keep it short and simple.
Post About it on Social Media
Use your social media channels to let your current and future clients know that you will be charging higher prices starting on a certain date.
If you have multiple social channels, make sure you are putting out one consistent message. It’s a good idea to use the same language across all platforms to guarantee that all your clients will receive the same information.
If You Choose to Not Tell Your Clients
If you go the route of not telling your clients, there are a few ways to make sure that you’re doing it ethically and transparently.
Schedule Your Price Increases
This is what I’ve chosen to do and I have to say, it works perfectly for me. I never announce that I’m going to raise my prices. Instead, I just raise them every January 1st of the new year.
I label my prices “2023 Prices” so that every current and potential client knows that these are my prices for 2023 and they can expect the prices to be different come 2024.
The first thing they read when they see my real estate photography pricing page is “2023 Real Estate Photography Pricing and Services.”
This quickly and easily communicates that for the year of 2023, you can expect to pay this much for these services, while leaving open the possibility that it will change come 2024.
Simply Raise Them
In truth, there is no law stating that you must alert your clients if you’re going to be charging them more money. Changing a few numbers on your website and then charging your clients slightly more is common place in most industries.
Sometimes, we face so much pressure from our clients to price ourselves competitively that we overthink everything when it comes to our pricing model. If you images and time are worth more than you’re receiving, charge more. Period.
Recommendations for Raising Prices
I would highly recommend that you adopt a scheduled price raising model. Doing so eliminates the need to make an announcement every time you raise prices and gets your clients to expect a price increase.
If you are concerned that not telling your clients will cause you to insult them and then lose their business, reach out to them directly and explain why you are going to raise your prices.
However, in my experience, clients never notice when I raise prices. I think if you asked every single client of mine right now how much I charge for 30 photos MAYBE one or two would be able to tell you. The rest might give a ballpark figure.
This very well might not be the case for you and your clients however. In any case, take some time to consider if you need to announce the increase in prices before you start releasing announcements.
It’s very possible that you announcing your prices will be going up is more likely to lose you clients than if you simply raise them without any warning or announcement.
If you’re just getting started in real estate photography, check out our Beginners Guide. It’s full of helpful articles and tips that will guide you in the right direction as you begin your real estate photography journey.
You can check out our Gear section as well to see reviews and recommendations on the latest real estate photography gear.
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