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Did raising your rates hurt your bookings?

asked 2017-01-05 09:26:33 -0500

I'm thinking about raising my rates from $22 to $24. When you raised your rates, did you find it hurt your bookings with new clients?

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No, it did not. I made a gradual rate increase as I got more customers and reviews. I kept the old rate for my old customers as a curtesy that they helped me start my business. For all new clients a new rate. People are fine with that.

Olga K.'s profile imageOlga K. ( 2017-02-27 14:47:03 -0500 )edit

Is there a way through Rover to have old clients at the old rate or are you manually adjusting it for them?

Becky S.'s profile imageBecky S. ( 2018-03-25 02:09:26 -0500 )edit

I'm new, so I don't know how to ask a question, but I accidentally chose the wrong answer on a question (why are you signing up/reason for profit) how do I change that?

Sarah M.'s profile imageSarah M. ( 2018-03-30 15:22:03 -0500 )edit

Hi Becky, you manually adjust the rate for your legacy customers.

Jennifer M.'s profile imageJennifer M. ( 2018-06-25 09:39:57 -0500 )edit

Is there a way to tell if they are a repeat client? This is the only issue I've had with the rover system... I don't remember every client and as far as I can tell the only way to see if they are a repeat client is to check your past bookings (which can take forever!)

Patricia P.'s profile imagePatricia P. ( 2018-07-14 06:19:22 -0500 )edit

When I get a client I save them into my phone under their name. If I get a request from someone and they already have a name assigned in my phone I know theyre a repeat.

Jennifer M.'s profile imageJennifer M. ( 2018-07-23 12:31:20 -0500 )edit

I keep a ledger of clients , I like the phone Idea I will have to start trying that as well.

Tammie W.'s profile imageTammie W. ( 2019-02-23 23:31:07 -0500 )edit

13 Answers

13
answered 2017-01-09 18:57:21 -0500

I raised my rates twice since I started Rover in Jan 2016, didn't lose a client!! Don't devalue the service you give to your clients, good clients are willing to pay reasonable rates knowing their fur babies are well cared for. I set my rates after looking at what the independent pet care companies charge in my local area. I used to look at Rover sitters but there are too many folks low balling and that hurts everyone in the community

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A thousand times THIS!! My area has become ridiculously saturated with Sitters. Using price as a competitive edge is a losing proposition. I prefer to offer other perks, like flexible pick-up/drop-off times. Much better strategy to differentiate yourself based on service rather than price.

Jill G.'s profile imageJill G. ( 2017-02-27 19:16:27 -0500 )edit
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answered 2017-01-05 10:36:27 -0500

When I raised my rates, it seemed to help weed out the "price shopping" clients who were generally not the greatest clients to work with anyways. Instead, I have received clients who book in advance, acknowledge my experience, and seem to have their pets' best interest in mind rather than looking for the cheapest possible care. Are you considering keeping your rate as-is for your current clients, or raising their cost as well? Either way, I would suggest giving them about a month's notice that you are going to be raising your rates, your reasoning (perhaps reflecting on your last year as a sitter and the costs associated with providing in-home care), and whether you intend to honor their current price or that their cost will be increased as well. I can't imagine that many would mind a $2/night increase, but you never know with some!

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I let my current clients know their rates will remain the same, especially since their dogs were great. I agree with the "price shopping" clients. I hope this does help weed certain clients out. Thanks for your response!

Sara R.'s profile imageSara R. ( 2017-01-05 10:59:50 -0500 )edit
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answered 2017-02-26 19:16:16 -0500

Yes and no. It does attract more responsible owners though.

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answered 2017-01-05 09:35:47 -0500

No. I think it may have helped a little. Depending on your area and the prevailing mentality, some owners avoid the cheapest Sitter because they feel that they are paying for better (true or not). I think that as long as your rates are fairly in line with the Sitters in your area, it should be fine and shows a bit of confidence in your ability :)

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answered 2018-03-23 00:42:21 -0500

I haven't so far experienced a rejection or cancellation regarding my rates changing to a much pricey cost than usual but I have had a repeat client contact me to inform in advance of their arranged schedule and wanted to know if the rates would be any different around the time they booked. As I occasionally change my rates I don't find it necessary to constantly remind my previous clients. If your clients love the quality of your service they'll always come back no matter the price. And any client can be that client if you give them the benefit, that's why at times I lower my rates below my original rate to allow everyone whom are interested the chance to personally experience my service. I see it as a fair opportunity, and a great way to bring in more clients. And for repeat clients I offer promotional discounts randomly as an appreciation for their dedication to my service.

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answered 2017-01-05 11:05:55 -0500

At that rate, you are still on the very low side for your area. Do a search in your area and doublecheck what the going rate is. Drill down on the map, as I did, and you'll see that most sitters in your specific area are higher.

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You're right. I set it to $28 to see how that goes.

Sara R.'s profile imageSara R. ( 2017-01-10 08:37:24 -0500 )edit
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answered 2018-03-24 09:50:19 -0500

There is a rule of thumb of sort in real estate property management suggesting that if your rental units are 100% occupied, your rents are too low. I created a profile with DogVacay in 2011 with the highest rates in the area, wasn't sure that I really wanted to be a host. I still have the highest boarding rates in my locale of 500-750K people though I have so much repeat business now that I am becoming overwhelmed. And I hate turning repeat clients away. Of course I note the low-ballers in the area, and the clients who are shopping for a "deal". Seems like my business is going to continue to grow, and I have searched Rover FAQ's and this community for guidance regards "growing pains", how to be more selective with clientele, different rate structures, etc, not much information available. I am reasonably comfortable with three guest dogs, today I have six with yet another reservation request. I know that there is a Rover Match service to help clients find the right though it would be nice to know a few other hosts in the area (I don't) to whom to refer overflow, and vice versa. Plus, having too much business can be exhausting, how do I find the energy or even the interest to clean my home, walk ways, etc knowing they will be filthy again in a matter of days?

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answered 2017-02-27 19:20:32 -0500

As you raise your rates also pay attention to your other service rates: Additional Dog, Extended Stay etc. You want to make sure that your extended stay rate is not such that the dog being left an extra day ends up being basically free. The math can get tricky but work out different scenarios on paper to figure out what makes sense.

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answered 2017-02-26 01:59:31 -0500

I had to raise mine when other sitters started matching them. I believe that some people see perceived value in a higher rate. Depends on the client.

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answered 2018-06-27 00:12:26 -0500

I raised my rates for this summer as I only accept one dog at a time now, and it actually brought me more business.

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