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Here's Why It's Important to Pre-Qualify Your Clients Before You Sign the Dotted Line on a New Web Design Project
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Here's Why It's Important to Pre-Qualify Your Clients Before You Sign the Dotted Line on a New Web Design Project

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Freelance SEO Consultant, Web Designer and Internet Marketer.

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Video Transcription

Hey guys, John here for another edition of this weeks Freelancing Friday.

This week I got a great question from Lyn. Lyn sent me in an email and she asks...

“Hi John, I have a client that is constantly calling and emailing about concerns about every minor detail of their website – in particular, cost. I'm only about 2 weeks into this project but I feel like I have to constantly justify costs and everything else that incurs an expense. This client is driving me insane. Have you got any suggestions, please help. Lyn".

Okay, great question, thanks for sending it in Lyn. I've got a great suggestion for you that will perhaps not help you out immediately, but it sure will in the long term.

Now I want to address this question a little bit differently to the way in which I've addressed questions previously, and that is where I address the actual question specifically, but I want to go a little bit broader and provide a solution in a way that will not only provide a solution for Lyn, but help everyone else as well that finds themselves in a position like this.

What I want to talk about is an important lesson that I learned within my own business, and in particular my online marketing business, as well as my web design stuff, and that is – pre-qualifying clients.

As we all know, getting clients as web designers can be tough, and it's really easy to fall into the trap of just wanting to work with anyone that comes your way – especially if you need the money. Now the biggest mistake that I made when I first got started, in amongst all of the others – that I'm sure I've mentioned through out all of these videos, was that I never pre-qualified my clients. I would just get the call, get the email, I'd go and sit with the client, and I wouldn't take into account anything outside of the actual project itself – and essentially just made that mistake of just taking onboard any client that came my way.

For those that aren't familiar with the term, “pre-qualifying a client” - it's just essentially, it's just a fancy way of saying – ensuring the client is worth working with. In any case, I think it's really important because you're better off working with a client who is already established, and has money to spend and is serious about doing business, as opposed to someone who is just kicking tyres.

Here's a few quick tips that will hopefully help you, go about pre-qualifying your clients.

Are they established?

This is a big one, because it makes much more sense for you to sit with a client that has been in business for 25, 30 or 40 years as opposed to someone who's got a few ideas that might want to start an online business.

Do they have staff?

If they have staff, they're paying wages. If they're paying wages, they've got good cash flow or they've got good, or they should have money to invest. If that's the case then you're going to find yourself working with someone who's not going to bicker and argue like this client is with Lyn about every nickle and dime that's being invested towards the website.

Do they have a physical location?

Do they have an office space, or a warehouse – do they have a physical location? If they have physical locations, then again this reinforces the fact that they're financially stable, and they're more than likely to have money to invest into the website.

Do they have an allocated budget?

If they have all of these things, they're established in business, they have staff, they have physical locations – then it's likely that they're going to have an allocated budget. If they have an allocated budget, this then means that it's going to be a lot less stressful for you, because the funds should already be allocated in order to be able to pay for the development of the website.

Okay, final two points and this is where it might be required that you use a little bit of your own gut instincts to determine as to whether or not you want to work with the person – but that comes down to, do they seem ….are they professional and organised, and also are they likeable? Do they have a friendly disposition?

Avoid grumpy clients that want to whinge about everything




These are two things alone I have used to determine whether or not I want to work with a client because if they sit down and they're extremely grumpy and they spend the whole hour and a half of the first meeting complaining about all of the other web designers they've worked with – that's a big red flag for me, and typically I'll just avoid those types of clients.


So Lyn, I know I haven't answered your question directly. I think with this particular client you're just going to have to try your best to work through it – but from here on in, both for you Lyn, as well as my other subscribers, and all of the other freelance web designers that might be watching this video – make better efforts to pre-qualify your clients because it makes much more sense to work established professionals that are willing to do business and pay you for what you're worth, than it is to work with tyre kickers and time wasters.

Okay so that's it for today's video. If you have any questions or comments please post them below. If you haven't yet already please subscribe. If you've found this video useful please share it with your friends, and if you'd like for me to cover something in particular please get in touch and I'll do that for you.

Thanks so much for watching, take care.

Author
John Romaine
Freelance SEO Consultant, Web Designer and Internet Marketer.

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