Let’s cut right to the chase.
Sharing your prices publicly, on your website, can feel a bit… scary.
What if your competitor sees it? What if folks see the price and immediately think, “That’s too expensive” and never call?
Or maybe your concern is that much of your pricing is customized, you primarily offer private lessons, and different dogs need different training plans that take different lengths of time and need to be priced accordingly.
Regardless, many dog trainers use these reasons (or others like them) to justify not sharing their prices on their website.
But I believe that’s a mistake.
The Case for Publishing Your Pricing on Your Website
While the reasons mentioned above are definitely worth some consideration, ultimately I think dog trainers should include their prices on their website (in fact, I think most businesses should).
When a pet owner is struggling with a problem with their dog and they begin their search for a dog trainer to help them, they’ll be evaluating each website they come across with three questions in mind.
- Do I believe this person can solve my problem?
- Do they work with people like me (in my location, with my perferences for group or private classes, etc)?
- Can I afford them?
Consumers are trained to search for price as part of any purchase decision. Think about it — when was the last time you were interested enough in a product or service to move forward without at least some idea of what the price would be?
And even if a percentage of people do move forward without knowing your prices up front, that leads to other problems.
Now you’re getting calls and emails from potential clients who can’t afford you. You wind up wasting time and effort on people who, at the end of the day aren’t going to pay you what you’re worth.
But What If They Think I’m Too Expensive?
Choosing how to price your services is hard — but the hard truth is that when someone says a product or services is “too expensive” it’s rarely a true problem with the price. Instead, the issue is often a failure to convey the value of what you offer.
In other words, you need to better communicate why what they are going to get is worth more than what they are going to spend.
So, how do you do that?
The single biggest mistake pet dog trainers (and really most small business owners) make when writing out information about their products or services is listening all the features of the product, instead of talking about those features in terms of the benefits that product provides.
For example, let’s say I was looking at a new vacuum to help wrangle the ridiculous about of dog hair floating around my house (2 GSDs both blowing their coat will do that to you).
Which of the following lines are more likely to catch my interest?
The motor spins at up to 110,000rpm to create powerful suction
Powerful suction can pull even embedded hairs out of the “hairiest” of carpets.
I don’t know about you, but that second option talks a lot more to me about what I’m worried about. I don’t really know or care how many rpms I need to help vacuum up the mess my dogs leave behind during the spring. I just know I want it gone.
The first line — the motor spins at up to 110,000rpm to create powerful suction — is a feature. It’s a fact about the vacuum. The second line is a benefit… it’s what that feature can do for me and why I should care.
When writing about your services is critical that you don’t just create a list of features, but that you dive into the benefits of those features instead. Features have an emotional pull on the reader — and it’s always easier to justify spending a little bit more when you know it’ll get you the thing you actually want, instead of the things someone else thinks you should want.
When you talk about benefits instead of features, your product or service appeals to a pet owner on an emotional level. They see the results that are possible… the results they want.
And that those results are possible for someone like them.
(This is also, by the way, the reason before and after videos are so powerful for dog trainers.)
And when someone believes you can deliver on what they want, they are much more likely to spend a little bit more… and complain that a product is “too expensive” a little bit less.