5 tricks to use when negotiating the price of a translation
Often feared by freelance translators, the negotiation of translation rates is nevertheless an essential step in the translation process. Here are some tips to use next time you have to negotiate a translation quote.
1. Emphasise your experience and training. Demonstrate that your price is fair by providing references and examples of services that you have already performed. That way, you can justify your rates and tell your customer, with good reason, that you are “worth it”.
2. Set limits. Working for scant wages is out of the question. If the contract is not interesting, refuse it and move to the next one. Decide beforehand what you are willing to accept, and what you’re not. This way, you avoid letting yourself be persuaded by a customer a little bit too convincing, and ending up with regrets afterwards.
3. Ramp up your rates a bit when you have a lot of work, and be firm about these. You may be surprised to find that many customers are willing to pay more than you thought.
4. Start by asking the customer if they have a budget in mind for the project they want translated. This means you have the freedom to accept it or make a counteroffer. If you start the negotiations off this way, you will on the one hand not have to waste your time with stingy clients, and on the other, you might even get a pleasant surprise when you are offered a higher amount than you were going to propose.
5. Work in complete transparency because many customers know very little about the translation market and how it functions. Showing some transparency by clearly presenting the translation services you are offering as well as exactly what your rates include can help you gain their confidence and obtain the price you want.
Always bear in mind that the objective of any negotiation is to satisfy both parties. In most cases, if you negotiate from an honest standpoint, you will reach an agreement which suits everyone.
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