Brian Krogsgard is a WordPress developer from Birmingham, AL. He is the founder and editor of Post Status, a WordPress newsletter, and the host of Post Status Draft, a podcast for WordPress developers. He started working with WordPress in 2010, after graduating from Auburn University with a degree in mechanical engineering.
Starting As a WordPress Developer
What is the most important thing you can share about pricing?
Pricing is not “one size fits all.” It varies depending on the customer, context, and degree of risk. The objective should be to maximize value for the customer and profit, not revenue, for the business.
What was your journey to becoming a freelancer?
His first development position was at a small agency, helping clients transition from a proprietary CMS to WordPress. At the next agency, Brian was the operations manager. He was responsible for determining scope, setting prices and presenting proposals to customers.
He started pricing websites by the number of pages or functional modules. Over time, he learned to price by the number of leads and average revenue per lead that the website would create for the customer.
What is the difference between developing websites and construction projects?
The progress of a construction project is very visible to the client. However, a website is not something a client can drive by and see. Regular communication is necessary to convey progress to the client.
Did the agencies where you worked compete through price or specialization?
The first agency was a full-service design shop, mainly in the state of Alabama. Their strongest competitive advantage was personal relationships, building trust with the customer.
The second agency was a boutique firm, focusing on high-end WordPress sites. Customers were attracted to their expertise even when the price was higher than the competition.
Making the Transition to Publisher
What did you learn from writing the article How much should a custom WordPress website cost?
The article was written in 3 hours one night from his frustration writing customer proposals. The feedback to the article helped Brian build a framework of the most common factors when setting a price. The article was viewed over 50,000 times in the first few weeks alone. The short answer to the question is, “It depends.”
What was your journey from free news to paid memberships with Post Status?
Brian learned web development by writing about WordPress. He started PostStatus in 2013, after writing WordPress news for other sites. Then in 2015, he began the transition to a paid membership site for $99 per year. The site has grown to 700+ paid members.
What did you learn about pricing membership sites?
There are three ways to buy PostStatus. First, a dozen companies are sponsors because of Brian's reputation in the WordPress community. Second, individuals can pay either $99 or $365 annually. $99 is the sweet spot, an impulse buy. $365 is a patron level, supporting the artist.
What is one of your best stories about creating value for a customer?
Each year, Brian chooses a non-profit to which he contributes his consulting services. It is an opportunity to keep his skills sharp and help a cause in which he believes.