Raising Prices

I just wanted to share a small story i had recently regarding raising prices.

i started window cleaning for a small company about 13 years ago and i remember my boss was constantly trying to land a contract with this car dealership, but they wouldn’t even take his quote because they were loyal to the guy that they already had.

i ended up buying a route from my boss and creating my own business, and about 6 years ago i picked up a car dealership on the other side of the city. it just so happened the owner of this one was the same owner of that dealership across the city. He told me to go talk to the manager at the other place and give a price. Which i did, but again the manager was very loyal to the same guy he had.

anyways out of the blue last month the owner of both places phoned me up and asked if i would go and talk to his manager and submit a estimate again. Which i did, and quoted it actually a little on the high side. (i usually don’t go to that side of the city)

In talking to the owner and the manager they both felt that the window cleaner they had, which they had been very loyal to had just got to greedy. They felt he took advantage of their loyalty and kept raising prices, till eventually someone felt they were paying way to much. thus they call me, and i have a new contract.

I guess my point is we can make very good money window cleaning, however it is a bit of a balancing act. Don’t get to greedy though.

Good point about balance, however raising prices doesn’t necessarily equate to greed, and we don’t really know why “someone felt they were paying way to much” on the basis of your post.

How does your price compare to the greedy price?

sorry i was expressing how the customer felt. He said directly “this guy got to greedy”

if i feel another window cleaner is to greedy, who cares. good for him if hes getting paid well, however its the customer that counts, i don’t want to be perceived by my customers as to greedy.

I’m greedy, no doubt. Greedy is something we attach to evil, but it is far from that. We are all greedy in one way or another.

It is kinda funny, the lowballers are not greedy and hated and some of the high priced companies are disliked just as much because they are getting more than us.

I say get as much as possible and give the best damned product we can.

Storefront managers have budgets and see the world through a very narrow tunnel

I think greed, defined as an excessive desire to acquire or possess more (especially more material wealth) than one needs or [B]deserves[/B]
Is BAD.
That being said, most residential window cleaners in my area charge $4-6 per window. I charge $10. does that make me greedy (as definded above)? Not at all, I am just not short changing myself like most of the other guys in my area. Infact I am still closing close to 85% of the phone calls I get and am considering going to $12/window. I feel I deserve the money I earn, and my customers seem to feel the same based on the feedback/tips/referrals they give me.

But yeah commercial can be a whole different beast.

there may be other factors beside the price. Like the relationship they had. The quality of the work, his professionalism, and reliability.

Other factors may have come into play.

You can charge high prices to the customer, but you have to make the customer feel like they are getting good value at the same time. Dloing extra on the initial clean, throwing things in here or there that the customer might need, and letting them know you went the extra mile. It is also important to keep the relationship strong, taking time out to speak to the owner, or his employees from time to time and so on.

ARHHHH…It’s a whole different beast, that’s for sure:confused:

I can’t believe you stole my job, Ash!

Jk.

Yeah - the whole “greedy” thing is completely subjective. I’ll pay $4 for an ice cream cone, but if a store charged me $12 for one, I’d probably think they were greedy too…

unless,

they made the whole experience super special and somehow elegant and enticing for me in other ways.

You make a solid point, for sure, though. We need to figure out where the clients “line” is in terms of their perspective on our prices. And every client has a different location for that line.

Funny.

Interesting thread. While still being new at this, my limited experience as well as other business experience has me thinking that people will fight with you more about raising prices than they will with an initial high bid. That is, if I do my sales job well I can bid higher and get the work and offer top quality work. If I bid lower and offer top quality it seems that a few of my customers want to challenge me in paying more for the same service next time around. Like, has anyone noticed the cost of operations and feeding the family? I’m starting to gladly walk away from these greedy customers.

Eric

Just raised my prices for the first time in ten years. I thought I would get a ton of flak but most of my clients said “what took you so long”. With an answer like that I felt the greed come into play…could I get more? Right now my prices are average and my workers, myself and clients are happy with the money end of things. sometimes we get the ones that don’t want to pay the high prices but 90% of those people live in glass houses and are rich for a reason. always looking for a “deal”. what they don’t know is that the cheap will do a crappy job and send them right back my way.

I hope you raised your prices 34%, otherwise you are charging less than 1998. According the US bureau of labor statistics $10 in 1998 has the same buying power as 13.44 in 2008.

Ultimately we are the loser when we dont raise prices regularly.

it’s easy to care what the customer thinks. We all want to well liked. However, who cares what they think, it’s what’s good for business, and how much you want to make, and what prices are needed to sustain a business.

If raising prices enable you to still make more money, take more vacations, or just enable you to pay the bills then that’s more important than others thoughts.

If you raise prices 20% and lose 20% of your clients you still come out ahead.

I am up to date now. I learned the hard way though. Jobs stayed the same and the bills just got bigger.

glad to hear it, so many people don’t see the light.

yeah, I just started raising some prices…just make sure to explain instead of throwing a higher invoice in their face.