Blogger Tips & Tricks: Determining How Much to Charge For Freelance Services

Blogger Tips & Tricks: Determining How Much to Charge For Freelance Services | by The Luxi Look

One question I get asked a lot (and have wondered myself) is how to determine how much to charge for a freelance service. As you might already know, I’m a huge proponent of the side hustle. But outside of your typical corporate career, how do you get paid? And how much? I feel like talking about money, in general, is considered somewhat taboo. But when it comes to anyone with a freelance career, bloggers especially, it became an almost impossible topic to get any real information on or learn much about. I was recently inspired by reading Refinery 29’s popular series of posts, Money Diaries.

I love the mission behind Money Diaries. Refinery 29 started the series of posts to highlight women across the world. Specifically how these women make and spend their money. They say on the website:

“…We’re tackling what might be the last taboo facing modern working women: money. We’re asking millennials how they spend their hard-earned money during a seven-day period — and we’re tracking every last dollar.”

Taking a stab at breaking through this topic, I thought I’d share some of my thoughts and experiences on making money through a side hustle or by freelancing.

Blogger Tips & Tricks: Determining How Much to Charge For Freelance Services | by The Luxi Look

Blogger Tips & Tricks: Determining How Much to Charge For Freelance Services | by The Luxi Look

Blogger Tips & Tricks: Determining How Much to Charge For Freelance Services | by The Luxi Look

Here’s how to determine how much to charge for freelance services:

Figure out the scope of work. 

How much work are you being asked to do? What is the scope of the project? Whether you have a fixed hourly rate or a variable rate depending on services delivered, make sure you have an idea up front of how much work you will have to do in order to complete a project. For example: for photographers, a one hour shoot for bloggers probably requires a different amount of work than an editorial shoot for a brand’s lookbook or a wedding. Freelance writers may want to have a better understanding of how many articles they are being asked to complete and how much research and detail needs to go into each. Influencers may be asked to create one single image for a brand. Sometimes it’s an entire video or lookbook. Don’t be afraid to ask questions to clarify the project at hand!

Blogger Tips & Tricks: Determining How Much to Charge For Freelance Services | by The Luxi Look

Blogger Tips & Tricks: Determining How Much to Charge For Freelance Services | by The Luxi Look

Blogger Tips & Tricks: Determining How Much to Charge For Freelance Services | by The Luxi Look

Identify your personal value.

What are you bringing to the table? Years of experience and expertise? A unique skill or talent? A large social audience? You need to be bringing value through the services you are offering! It’s okay to do work for free to build up your network, your experience, and the quality and professionalism of your work. Don’t be afraid to learn and grow through doing work for trade – you never know what doors might open up!

Once you feel comfortable with the value you’re offering, you can set a price for your services. This rate may vary from project to project – after all, freelancing really is the wild, wild west.

Consider everything you bring to the table.

Say you are a freelance photographer. You may charge an hourly rate for your services, but you also need to account for your equipment (camera equipment is EXPENSIVE), your skill and expertise that you’ve built up over time (a photographer with 10 years of experience is very different than a photographer with only 6 months), and the time and energy spent on editing (which is oftentimes the most time consuming part!). If you’re working on larger productions, you may also need to account for assistants and any additional staff on your team. This may explain why there is a huge discrepancy in rates – some photographers may offer their services for free, while others charge thousands per hour or have a fixed day rate.

For influencers, the size of your audience can determine your rate. This can include a combination of your reach (how many people see your posts on different platforms) and influence (ability to convert sales or drive traffic). Unsure waht to charge? A general marketing rate is cost per thousand (CPM), or rate per thousand impressions. A couple years ago, I read on a popular fashion blogger’s site that she charged $10 per every 1,000 followers on Instagram, but this is probably no longer entirely accurate.

Blogger Tips & Tricks: Determining How Much to Charge For Freelance Services | by The Luxi Look

Blogger Tips & Tricks: Determining How Much to Charge For Freelance Services | by The Luxi Look

Determine the value of this partnership.

Are you receiving anything in return for the services asked? Whether it’s free product or the opportunity to have your brand cross promoted to a large audience. You should also consider the potential non-monetary benefits of taking on a certain project. I totally get that the hustle is real when you rely on income from freelance work. Just keep in mind that not all value comes in the form of money!

At the end of the day, freelancing can be incredibly stressful but also incredibly rewarding. You are your own boss and responsible for seeking out and taking on various projects. You have to hustle, and then hustle some more – there’s no one handing you projects or telling you what to do.

Make friends in your industry.

One thing I’ve found incredibly helpful is making friends in a similar industry and having someone to bounce ideas off of and talk to. I think having a strong support system is essential in order to have open dialogue on topics that may feel taboo or hush hush.

Transparency and authenticity are so important in the freelance industry. It’s disappointing and disheartening to see so many people taking shortcuts and choosing to deceive brands and partners. Which is why taking steps towards open conversations and transparency in the industry is so valuable.

Freelancers and creatives – what are your thoughts on setting rates and finding work?

xx, Amy

dress: grana | denim jacket: blank nyc (similar) | backpack: sticks + stones

16 Discussion to this post

  1. Jessi Malay says:

    Awesome tips babe, we always gotta hustle! And love your photography, such a clean aesthetic 🙂

    XO, Jessi

  2. Jenn says:

    Thank you for the tips! Heading over to Refinery 29’s Money Diaries to read more about this. By the way, I love how simple and trendy your outfit is!


  3. These are very great tips to keep in mind when asked for your rates. I think as bloggers we do take a lot of time and effort and even our own expenses to do what we do and it is nice to get a fair asking rate for building our business. I think the key is also showing the brand what you can do for them and what you can bring to the table that sets you apart from others and why you can charge what you are asking. I also believe in building relationships and working for free to form a solid reputation with a brand. Love this casual outfit on you and definitely need to check out Grana for their amazing pieces. xoxo, Christine

  4. Elizabeth says:

    Thank you so much for sharing these great tups Amy 🙂 I definitely agree – I’ve worked with multiple brands for no fees because I’m still relatively new to blogging and I want to build up my blog’s reputation/relationships first! On that note, I always did wonder about determining how much to charge for freelance services, so I’m so glad that you tackled this somewhat taboo topic! Loving this casual outfit so much <3

    XO, Elizabeth

  5. Siffat Haider says:

    You look so effortlessly cool! Also, I love that you’re writing about this topic, I think it’s so important to put all the information out there. When I was starting out, I was so confused about what to charge, so it’s super helpful to new bloggers to have the information out there.

  6. Great tips darling. Thank you for sharing.
    I am a newbie and very curious to find out how it all works.
    Have a fabulous day.

    Love, Esther

  7. mainou says:

    Such helpful tips & thanks for the recommended read!

  8. Daniel says:

    Great tips! Thanks for sharing with us! x

    Daniel x

    The Daniel Originals | Instagram: danielpoonvignez

  9. Belle says:

    It’s so awesome that you’re opening up a conversation about blogging and money. You’re so right that it’s taboo, but it shouldn’t be! Thank you for starting the discussion 🙂

  10. Kim Cao says:

    These are amazing tips! btw I love your shoes!

  11. Great tips, thank you so much for this post!! From my experience as a freelance designer and creative director, you should never charge hourly unless there’s no other way around it. Always aim to charge per project, especially as you gain seniority.

    Much love <3

  12. Jessica says:

    This is such a nice read, really informative. I can definitely relate to your points, especially on “Identify your personal value.” We should definitely know our value and NOT short-sell ourselves.

    Jessica |

  13. Sara Azani says:

    This is so important. Wonderful tips for anyone considering getting into freelance.

    xx Sara

  14. Maggie Cupper says:

    Excellent article, your experience is useful to me! What do you think about these tips
    I will be grateful for the answer!

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