General Question

pallen123's avatar

Do you prefer to pay for credits or a minimum fee?

Asked by pallen123 (1511 points ) August 25th, 2011

I’m working on a web project where people pay a very small fee (.75 cents) for various editing services. Would you rather pay a minimum fee ($3.00) for four edits OR would you rather pay $10 for 15 credits (each credit worth .75 cents so you get a slight discount for buying credits)?

We’d like to keep it simple and just have one payment option—either credits or minimum fee.

What is your opinion? Which would you prefer?

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5 Answers

YARNLADY's avatar

I think it might be better to offer the choice to your customers. If you don’t want to do that, the credit/discount would be my preference.

Jeruba's avatar

Please help me understand the idea of charging for four edits. Are you working on bodies of written material? and charging per error corrected?

As an editor myself, I am wondering how this could work because so many suggested changes are discretionary in nature and some number of others are just plain wrong. And is a change actually a deletion and insertion (two charges)? Is the removal of a comma equal in worth to the rewriting of a sentence? Some solutions require a mere keystroke, and others are real head-scratchers. And all that assumes that you know what the client meant to say, which can be hard to determine from error-ridden text. What do you charge for an intelligent and well-written query without a change?

Besides, if you are working on something that’s in very good shape, you could spend a lot of time going over pages that don’t need any changes, but the absence of changes represents an investment of time and many editorial decisions. Getting paid nothing for that would not be fair compensation for the effort put in.

Customarily, rates are based on either unit of time or unit of text (such as a page or a number of words).

If I were your customer, I would want to see very clear definitions of what I was paying for before I engaged your services. In fact, having been a party to many futile exercises over the years in which defining and quantifying editorial changes was the aim, I would love to see them in any case.

pallen123's avatar

Thank you both for your input. @Jeruba I’m sorry I wasn’t clear. The edits I’m referring to are not what most typically think of when they hear the word “edit”. The actual service has nothing to do with text editing. However the site we’re developing could be easily redesigned for that purpose—although as you point out the pricing would have to be different. In this case the edits are changes to technical diagrams.

Jeruba's avatar

@pallen123, the customer asks for a change to a technical diagram, and that’s one edit?

You know your business better than I do, to be sure, but at times in my career I have been the editor sending a drawing back to the technical artist for changes, and I would still say that defining “one change” could be tricky. The customer sees one fix and you see twenty operations to achieve it. How do you charge for that?

phaedryx's avatar

I’m more used to paying for services over time, e.g. $10 for an hour’s worth of editing, but I guess, of the two options, I’d prefer paying per edit.

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