The way that price is presented is very important. If a customer wants detailed pricing shown in a particular way it is advisable to understand and fulfil their request rather than try to sidestep it on the grounds that it is not how your company does things. Similarly, when the customer wants detail of how your price is constructed (maybe for you to declare your costs plus mark-ups) it is worthwhile fulfilling the request, or if it is too commercially sensitive then not to pursue the work.

The most important factors to consider regarding how prices are presented to a client/customer are:

  • Answering in full: Giving comprehensive answers to all questions asked.
  • Simplicity: Avoid complexity and un-requested detail; try to keep things as simple as possible to comprehend.
  • Making it easy for your customer: It is possible that you will be competing for the work at hand.  If this is the case, try to keep the pricing presentation simple so that the customer can easily evaluate what you have provided versus your competition.
  • Tally with Terms & Conditions (the legal submission): Try to balance your price and how it is presented and clarified with the terms & conditions of the arrangement. Whilst it may seem sensible to be risk averse and attempt to put all risk on to your customer or to caveat your price with as many minor details as possible it may seem too-unattractive in a competitive setting.  Therefore, try to tailor the price and the Ts&Cs to manage risk appropriately rather than try to avoid it altogether.
  • Price changes over time: The way that you present your price can be an effective way to negotiate any changes in price over time, particularly if scope or duration changes.  By showing how a price is arrived at, the component parts within can demonstrate why a price may need to change.  For example, if a number of services are itemised and one in particular involves more work this could be adjusted, with all other content remaining the same.