3 Fatal Pricing Mistakes New Photographers Make

pricing mistakes

When I first started my business, I almost ruined it.

I was charging $45 a session. It seemed reasonable at the time. I was sure that having the lowest prices with the best offers would guarantee me bookings.

I was wrong.

What was most frustrating is all the time I spent hunting for business.

Facebook, Instagram, personal pages... I was everywhere.

It got me nothing. Zero results.

I was devastated. I almost gave up my dream. It seemed like I'd tried everything. Was having my own photography business a pipe dream? Was it impossible?

It wasn't.

It turns out, I was doing all the wrong things. I made three fatal pricing mistakes you just can't make if you want to build a successful photography business.

Well, I learned. And now, I'm bringing all those lessons to you so you can be more successful right out of the gate.

Here are the three biggest pricing mistakes people make when starting out.

Mistake #1: Being Cheap

how to fix my photography prices

This may sound shocking, but... cheap doesn't get you clients.

Your price sets the expectation. We've been taught that cheap = not good.

When we see a cheap price, our minds automatically devalue the thing we're looking at. We assume the quality must match the price.

Believe it or not, your cheap prices are repelling your clients.

Mistake #2: Offering Too Much

what's wrong with my prices

I know, I know. It seems like offering more would be a good thing. What client wouldn't want more things? Surely, this must get you more sales?


Just like being cheap, this drives clients away.

Here's what they're thinking when you offer too much:

...What's the catch?

...They must not know what they're doing.

...They must not be any good.

Everyone loves a good deal, but no one wants to feel like the deal is too good to be true. This erodes the trust clients have in you.

Mistake #3: Not Knowing Your Numbers

photography pricing mistakes

When I started my photography business and didn't get any bookings, I didn't know it at the time, but it was a blessing in disguise.

See. If I did, I would've been PAYING my clients to shoot them.


Between the time for driving, shooting, editing, and delivery. I would have been investing 5-6 hours per session.

That would have been $7.50 in hour BEFORE TAXES.

Crazy, right?

This is why knowing your numbers is SOOOOO important. You need to know how much it COSTS YOU to do the job.

So, you can keep pricing cheaply and make less than minimum wage...

OR, you could do what I do now.

Price like a professional. Make a profit on every. single. session.

This can seem daunting, but have faith in yourself. Feel confident in your business.

Trust me.

Don't make the fatal mistakes I made back in 2015.

Alright, alright. I've told you the three things to make sure you NEVER do when trying to price your photography... But what should you do, instead?

Focus on your numbers.

making money in photography

When I created my pricing, I did a Google search. I looked at what other photographers were charging.

It seemed like a good idea. After all, weren't they already "in business" and had clients? Surely, they must've been priced right... right?!

I never thought that maybe... just maybe they got their pricing the same way I got mine. Just copying someone else.

I figured copying someone else's prices would be good enough. #EpicFail

I was so embarrassed!

I seriously thought, with zero business experience, that I had it all figured out.

I realized I had two choices.

  1. I could keep doing things my way.

  2. Or, I could get help from someone who had experience and had done what I was trying to do.

right prices to charge for photography

So, I put my ego aside.

It was the best decision I made for my business. It had a huge domino effect on everything else.

Now, I know my numbers.

I make a profit on every shoot. I charge what I'm worth.

Now you know the 3 pricing mistakes that killing your business and you know how to overcome them.

If you are looking for help in your photography journey... I am here for you.

You can schedule a free consultation by emailing me at support@thephotographystartuphub.com.