4. Argue for you or your product.
You know what you can do. And you are sure that your work or your product is good. Otherwise, you would not have been self-employed. But what makes you so unique? What sets you apart from the crowd? Clearly, you must be able to answer these questions for yourself before a price negotiation. And these are the answers you tell your customer to show him why you're worth your money. You do not need to ‘’argue’’ for your product in the form of dot point emails explaining how great you are - but most certainly in the work or previous work you present, the proposal itself. You can argue for your product in the service you provide as well.
Yes, that sounds strange. But did you know that silence is an established and successful negotiating strategy? If a customer makes an offer or a counter offer and you are silent, this silence is interpreted as a rejection of the given offer. In the best case, the customer then on his own - and in your favor - to screw his offer
6. Work with body language.
If you are negotiating with your client face to face, be present and step back, and allow yourself to perceive their physical responses to the discussions. Sometimes the reasons for the negotiation may be too private - maybe the budget really is tiny, maybe there are other costs coming up and they are concerned, maybe you are new to them and they do not know your service. Look for cues and adjust your communication to better suit a positive outcome.
7. Offer your customer additional services.
It's not always about the price, but about the performance the customer receives. If you do not want to continue financially, you can offer an additional service. For example, a free correction loop. Or - in the case of a product sale - an addition to the goods, or an edit or adjustment. Be sure to have options in your mind of what you can offer that may be of more value to your client while you negotiate.
8. Make only small concessions.
Imagine sitting on the other side of the negotiating table. Say: you are the customer. That too will happen in your life as a freelancer or self-employed person. For example, if you make an offer for a software tool or work with another freelancer. In such situations, it may be worthwhile to meet only in small price increments. This signals your counterpart: "Hey, I've reached my price limit." Sometimes it can be very easy to knock a lot off just to speed up the negotiation - but just remember the game is for everyone to feel like that are getting a fair deal.
9. Do not fall for a bluff.
It may happen that the negotiator has gotten a better deal than what you have given - at least he claims that. Of course, in this situation, you can not be sure if your client really has a better deal or just bluffs. In fact, this is surprisingly common and you may even employ such techniques when buying something as simple as a T.V. - well, humans do that in business too. Argue then with comparison prices in the market. If the offer that the customer tells you is far from these prices, he bluffs or he has received an offer from an unprofessional service provider or defective goods, and it really has nothing to do with you. You know your price and limitations.
10. Slice by slice, step by step, piece by piece
Slice - or better: piece by piece to the goal. That's the salami tactic. Towards the end of a negotiation, both parties use the opportunity to get small additions. A good starting position. Again, know what you have to offer and end the negotiations on a good note - where everyone feels like they are getting what they want.
11. Make concessions for longer term bookings.
A situation that will happen to you more often as a freelancer: A customer would like to book you for an on-site job over several weeks. Great thing. After all, that means a regular income for that period. In such cases, however, you should adjust your fee. Your hourly rate is most likely too high if the customer books you firmly for three months and full time. For such cases, you should calculate weekly and monthly rates, with which you can live well and through which your customer - compared to the hourly rate - saves something. Make sure you have this tiered pricing in mind for your business. Something which starts with the first hourly rate, and calculated for all situations downwidth.