Itemize to Educate: What Your Clients Want to Know and Will Pay For

Written by Youssef Sleiman in Blog, Legal, Small Business
September 30, 2014:

You’ve probably already heard the cliché of customer experiences and the value of a Starbucks drink. (If it isn’t a cliché to you yet, it should be.)

You’re the expert for your clients. Only you know all the steps that go into creating their projects, making their cases and solving their needs, right?

If that’s true, your own invoices could be killing your credibility with your present and future clients.


The same customers who pay the premium for a Starbucks experience will also pay for your expert attention. This takes educating and specific time tracking throughout the life of your project.

Many of your clients chose you based on a recommendation or an advertisement. Now that they’re in your care, it’s up to you to create a sense of hospitality with your premium-grade skills.

Did you have to investigate the archaeological history of a plot of land for their taxes? Did the project require consulting a guru (who, by the way, would be inaccessible to your client had they heard them?) Did your team forge new insight through research in an otherwise obscure market to ensure a creative project’s success?

The chances are every client needs some special attention that only you and your team could give.


If your invoice only reads “working hours” when your team is busy being Jack Ryan/Indiana Jones for your client, you’re doing yourself, your firm and possibly your industry a disservice.

Instead, track every step and assign a reasonable value in your invoices. By the way, this is especially easy with Bill4Time’s mobile and tablet apps. Mobile Time Tracking

These are the signs of a premium firm caring for its grateful clients:

  • “Comparing testimony and statements with those cases cited in legal precedents.”
  • “Researching website designs of competitors, related industries and new design trends.”
  • “Pre-meeting evaluations with client to ensure customized solutions.”

Not sure what you do that adds value to your services? It may be time for some business-level soul searching to determine what you can do to set your firm/agency/consultancy apart from the rest.

As you track your time, you’ll see more items appear on the invoice. Charge fairly, and remember, the key is accuracy and specificity.

Your client has no idea how smart and dedicated you are if instead you put down “billable hours” while you’re hunting a vital detail in the county clerk’s office.

On the other hand, if their coffee order was handcrafted perfectly to reflect their identity, your clients will know exactly how good a cup they’re getting.

Invoice specifically and accurately, and watch your value soar.

More on billing and invoicing

Go even further with expense tracking

Written by Youssef Sleiman

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