Few business decisions is more feared, ignored and avoided than raising prices. But while we’ve all hoped the issue would go away, it hasn’t. So, on the count of three, we’ll all (including me) pull our heads out of the sand, and face the day.

Here are a few reasons you should be raising your prices:

Inflation
Prices rise over time – or, conversely, your dollars buy less over time. Just ask your parents what they got paid in their first job, and you’ll hear (for the zillionth time) how little per hour they made, and how a movie cost a nickel, and kids these days don’t appreciate….blah, blah. The point is, the world gets more expensive as time goes by, and most practitioners don’t address it. All the costs in your business are increasing, on average, by 3% per year. If you go for five years without raising your rates, you’re taking home less money. Imagine if you were running that movie theatre today, and still charging a nickel admission and 3 cents for popcorn…

You’re Better Than You Were Last Year
It’s true. You now have more experience, and your skills have improved. (If you’ve gotten worse since last year, you have bigger problems than inflation.) You are gradually becoming an expert in your choosing field of alternative medicine, and your patients are reaping the benefits. Over time, that expertise is worth more in the marketplace. Why should a shiny new TCM practitioner make the same as you, the 15 year veteran?

More Profit
I’m not suggesting you be greedy, but remember that when you raise your rates by 5%, you’ve pretty much added that extra cash to your pre-tax income – there are no extra expenses associated with the rate increase. It is, essentially, extra money.

“What if I lose patients?” you might ask. It can happen, but you may find that a price hike lets you keep your best customers, and in fact make more profit on fewer total clients. That, in turn, translates into better life balance.

Define Your Niche
The business world is full of stories of products that sell because they’re priced higher than others. This is part of the larger picture of your pricing strategy of your holistic practice, but for now remember that your price says something about the value of your offering. Are you trying to be the cheapest, or are you offering a premium service? If you’re in the latter category, you’ll want to be sure your rates consistently reflect your position.

Convinced? We’ll discuss how to do it in with minimal pain in a future post…

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