I recently had a B2B client that put an estimate together for his client, only to have his client then say the five most dreaded words of any freelancer, “I want to shop around.”
He wasn’t sure how to respond to his clients need to compare prices. Usually, this means that the client feels that the budget is too high, or is trying to get two or more freelancers to underbid each other.
Second, it doesn’t hurt to ask the client why they need time to look around by simply asking them if they have any questions about the proposal that needs clarifying.
The main thing that my client needed to do, however, was simply create the scarcity of time.
For example, he could have said:
“I certainly would want you to make an informed decision. The estimate I provided is based on your request to have your project completed by ‘X’ date. As such, the estimate is good until ‘Y’ date. You’re free to shop around all you want. However, ff you get back to me after that ‘Y’ date, we may have to re-examine the project completion date because my workload will might shift by then. Does that sound reasonable to you?”
Or something like that. “Y” is one to two weeks from when the estimate was presented. You’re not pushing your client to sign the deal. You’re simply educating the client on the reality of time management and workload. The longer the client shops around, the more it pushes out the launch/completion date. After all, you might have to start a new project by ‘Y’ date.
If you think you’re being too pushy, get over it. Everyone’s time is scarce. Setting a timetable is not being pushy. It’s simply reality.