How to Determine What Your Development Services Are Worth (5 Key Tips)

Pricing your services as a WordPress developer is a tricky task. On one hand, you don’t want to overcharge and drive potential clients toward your competition. That said, you also don’t want to sell yourself short and miss out on income you deserve.

While striking a balance is difficult, there are several indicators you can rely on to determine what your development services are worth. You simply need to know where to look, and be willing to make an honest assessment of yourself as a professional.

In this post, we’ll explore why it’s wise to devote time and careful consideration to pricing your services. Then we’ll share some tips that can help you set the perfect price point to attract clients without shortchanging yourself. Let’s go!

The Importance of Determining How to Price Your Services

Whether you’re a freelancer sourcing clients or are hunting for an agency position, it can be tempting to just accept whatever rate you’re offered by a potential client or employer. However, if you don’t know what your services are worth, you could end up getting taken advantage of.

Making sure you’re informed about what other developers with similar education and experience levels are earning can help you spot bad offers a mile away. This will also give you a solid negotiating point when you go back to your lead to ask for fairer compensation.

At the same time, you don’t want to overprice your services either. That’s a surefire way to drive potential clients or employers to your competition. If your prices are competitive, however, you can focus on showcasing your skills instead of scaring leads off before they even glance at your portfolio.

How to Determine What Your Development Services Are Worth (5 Key Tips)

When you can strike the right balance while setting the pricing for your development services, you’ll hopefully find it easier to compete with other professionals and make a living.

A fair price is one that’s best for both you and the person paying you. While there’s no one right answer for everyone, these guidelines can help you find that magic number.

1. Assess What Your Competition Is Charging

If you only use one tip from this list, let it be this one. Doing research into your competition to see what they’re asking for in terms of pricing is the best way to stay competitive, without shortchanging yourself in the process.

The simplest way to do this is to look at freelance job sites such as Upwork, and search for services such as “web design” or “WordPress development”:

WordPress developer freelancer results from Upwork.

This should reveal plenty of results that show you exactly what other professionals like you are charging their clients. Pricing your services similarly can put you in a strong position to remain competitive and lucrative.

If you’re hoping for an agency position, you can still do a little simple math to translate freelance hourly rates into an equivalent salary. Alternatively, you might reach out to others in the field, to get an idea of what a typical developer’s salary looks like.

2. Research Standard Earnings for the Industry

These days, it’s not too difficult to learn what the standard salary is for any particular career path. Online resources such as Glassdoor have compiled data from survey respondents to create a fairly accurate portrait of what you can expect from your paycheck:

Search results for WordPress developer salaries on Glassdoor.

By signing up for a free account, you can also filter information based on your experience, location, and other key details. Just keep in mind that the initial amount you’ll see displayed is an average. It’s important to dig a little deeper to find the most accurate rate for you and your situation.

3. Weigh Up Your Education and Experience

It’s always vital to consider your education and experience when determining what your services are worth. Before you set your rate based on listings from Upwork or Glassdoor, make sure to consider what you’re offering and how it stacks up to the people you’re comparing yourself against.

For instance, let’s say you notice that the majority of the WordPress developers on Upwork are charging around $80 per hour. However, if you look into specific users’ profiles, you may see that many of them haven’t been in the industry as long as you have.

In this case – especially if you have a larger portfolio and solid references you can rely on – you may want to charge $100 per hour. Just make sure to highlight your superior experience in your listing, and how it can benefit potential clients.

Likewise, if you’re just starting out you may want to lower your rate slightly below the average freelancer. This may help you land clients who are willing to work with new developers, in order to save some money on their projects. This will not only make you competitive with more experienced professionals, but will also help you build up your portfolio so you can eventually raise your rates.

4. Factor in Freelance Job Site Fees

If you’re sourcing your clients on freelance job sites such as Upwork, it’s important to remember that the platform will probably take a portion of your hourly wage. This is how you compensate the company for helping you find clients:

The freelancer agreement from Upwork, which states the site is entitled to up to 20 percent of a user's earnings.

If you’re using Upwork or a similar site, make sure to factor these fees into your rates. Setting your prices too low could result in insufficient revenue after your job site takes its cut.

5. Consider Different WordPress Pricing Models

In the event that you’re building WordPress plugins or themes, you’ll also need to consider how to price your products. There are two pricing models typically used by WordPress developers and other professionals: one-time and recurring.

One-time pricing is fairly straightforward. Your customer pays a single amount and receives the plugin or theme in question to use as they please. Usually, lifetime support and updates are included:

The WP Bakery Page Builder pricing table, which is based on a one-time pricing model.

Recurring pricing is also sometimes called ‘subscription-based’ or ‘Software as a Service (SaaS) pricing’. This model requires that the customer pays regularly (usually monthly or annually) to continue receiving support and updates for their product:

The Jetpack pricing table, which is based on a recurring pricing model.

Of course, many WordPress plugins and services offer tiered pricing. Additional or enhanced features become available to customers who pay for the more expensive tiers:

The WP Engine pricing table, which shows a tiered pricing model.

Pricing models can make or break a potential customer’s decision to purchase a theme or plugin. Choosing the best system for you will help you stay competitive, while also ensuring that your products are profitable.


All the research that goes into properly pricing your WordPress development services can seem intimidating. However, when you take the time to set optimal rates, you’ll be setting yourself up for success in the industry.

To do that, you can follow these five key tips for deciding how to price your WordPress services:

  1. Assess what your competition is charging.
  2. Research standard earnings for the industry.
  3. Weigh up your education and experience.
  4. Factor in freelance job site fees.
  5. Consider different WordPress pricing models.

Do you have any questions about determining what your development services are worth? Let us know in the comments section below!

Image credit: Pexels.

The post How to Determine What Your Development Services Are Worth (5 Key Tips) appeared first on Torque.

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