I do all three models you’ve outlined, but also tend toward the hybrid model most. Still, I personally always want to know (roughly) how many hours I’m going to need for a project, regardless of what pricing strategy is involved. That way, I at least have a baseline. From there, depending on the client or situation, I’ll take other factors into consideration. So, similar experience here. Also, you may have mentioned some of this, but… In a project or value-pricing arrangement, you’re not feeling like you need to turn on the clock every time a client calls or emails. In an hourly situation, clients can resent seeing a 5-minute line-item on an invoice b/c they asked you something. If you don’t bill, you lose those bits of time (which can add up!); if you do, you can seem cheap (and, at worst, can actually foster a relationship in which clients decide not to call you when they actually should). But, in a situation where you’re taking value into consideration, you avoid that hassle. I like to build in time for anticipated client care always, which itself lends considerable value for most clients.

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Web guy at ArrayWebDevelopment.com; author of books & blogs. See: JPDbooks.com.

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