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3 Tips for Increasing the Likelihood a Client Will Accept Your Estimate

Coming up with an estimate is like walking a fine line. Don’t underbid and undersell your products or services. You may get the job over the competition, but you won’t turn a profit, and you’ll have to turn away other potentially better-paying clients to fulfill your obligation to this one. However, you don’t want to overbid to the point where you never get a job over your competition, either. Learn how to craft the perfect estimate and secure more worthwhile jobs.

Use a Professional Form

Visit and take advantage of their free printable estimate form. A clearly outlined estimate in a professional-looking template lends your quote more gravitas and will make it stand out among other quotes from less organized businesses and freelancers. Create a free account and unlock more features, including tracking invoices and organizing payments.

Clearly Break Down Everything

Instead of just tossing out a number, tell your potential client how you arrived at that number. Break down the estimate into item and labor costs. Clients appreciate the transparency and then might be able to negotiate with you on the price if they know where they can get the parts necessary cheaper, if you’re open to letting the client buy their own goods. Include how long your work will take and your start date as well. When deciding on a starting date, the sooner, the better if you want to entice a customer to sign with you.

Be Prompt and Courteous

As soon as a potential client expresses interest in hiring you, come up with her quote promptly – at the most within a day, if not even within a few hours. Oftentimes, the first business to offer a quote is the one to secure the job, especially if the client is in a hurry. When you present the quote, even if it’s just by email, tell the client how much you enjoyed speaking with him and how much you look forward to working with him. Make it known you’re available for any questions. Even if the client tries to talk you into lowering your quote and it’s not feasible for you, be firm but courteous in case she winds up signing with you anyway or comes back for another job in the future.

Whether you’re a freelancer or a representative from a small business, it’s worthwhile to sign up for an online invoicing program so you can keep track of every estimate and invoice you send. The right program will even allow you to accept credit card payments, which increases your potential pool of clientele.