The Business Side of Coaching: 8 Tips for Setting Your Rates and Building Packages

My name is Mike Weisman, and I’m on the Coach Engagement Team at CoachUp. I double as a part-time baseball coach on the CoachUp platform, so I get to see both sides of the coin.

A hot topic for private coaches is how to set appropriate price points for your sessions and packages.

Whether you are coaching for your full-time business, or trying to leverage a passion for some extra income on the side, we as coaches want to maximize our income while being able to attract the right clients, as well as the right number of clients. Below are some tips for setting your pricing and packages, based on my experience on CoachUp, with some insights from data points we collect.

1. Remember the fee structure when setting your rates.

We all know that CoachUp makes a percentage of the rate we set, so make sure you are not in for any surprises when you complete that first training session. Use the tool in the packages tab that projects your earnings based on the rate you choose.

2. Having said that, don’t overcompensate a change in your rate because of the fee structure.

If you set your price so you have your ideal payout on the first session, it gives an unrealistic price-point moving forward for a client, just so that you made what you wanted to make for the first session or two.

The most accurate price point comes from blending the rate over all the sessions you are projecting to do with your clients and increases the chances the client is going to see a rate they are comfortable with for an extended period of time.

Fluctuating your rates to coordinate with the fees is not worth the effort or confusion it can have on the client's end. It is much easier in my experience to anticipate the total sessions completed, fees taken out, and price yourself with one consistent rate.

3. Increasing your rate in general does not have as big of an impact on your conversion rate as you may think.

Our data shows that increasing your rate does not have as strong of an impact as other variables, like how many reviews you have, your experience, and distance from a potential client. Every $10 increase is only a couple percentage points difference in conversion rate.

4. Take a look around the CoachUp market you’re in and use price to differentiate yourself.

If there are two coaches with more reviews and similar experience, you may need to offer a lower price than them for your first few clients to get a couple reviews and sessions under your belt. I did this myself and have heard anecdotally from other coaches that it helped jump-start them on the site.

5. Limit your listed package offerings.

You do not need every possible iteration of number of sessions, number of clients, length of session etc. Bucket group sessions into small and large groups. If you come across a client with a unique request, you can always just send them a custom rate. We’ve found when presenting a client with limited options, it helps with overall conversion.

6. Tie your pricing more to time than number of athletes in the package.

Disclaimer—this is my opinion—but adding an athlete to a session does not necessarily change the amount of work or effort I am putting in and the more kids I can coach, the better as far as I’m concerned. Afterall we all got into coaching at some point to help athletes get better! As the size of the group increases, you can increase the amount of time needed in the session for everyone to get enough coaching to improve. Now that the time spent has gone up, so can the rate. This can help with meeting new clients - “Bring a friend!” while still being able to charge bit more for groups.

7. Use CoachUp discounts to your advantage.

Use variations of three, five, and ten session packages when creating package sizes. These are almost always the levels CoachUp uses on promotional discounts. (i.e. save $25 on a 5+ session package)

8. Establish your value by avoiding free sessions or trial rates.

My goal is to develop a long-term relationship with any client I work with. A small part of this is the fee structure. I’m incentivized to complete those later sessions over starting a new relationship. A much bigger part of this is why I coach in the first place. A kid is going to regress back to their previous point in development after a couple sessions. Nobody can really experience significant development in a few hours of practice. Offering discounted or free trials is asking for someone to come in, learn a few tips for a couple sessions, but not be willing to commit fully to you and your program. Making people pay for your service gives them the impression that it is valuable right away - which it is!

See other The Business Side of Coaching Topics:

Using Training Facilities
Selling Yourself as a Coach

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