Last night, I provided support to a recent customer by setting up their small business's email address to be read within an email client. I had already done this on one of their devices as part of the contracted work (with the majority of the work being web design/development), and what I did last night was adding sending/receiving email capabilities to two more machines. Overall, the time spent doing this was one hour rounded.
Now, we don't have a formal contract for this kind of small support, but my customer asked me to send along the bill. As I see it, I have a few different options for how to approach the billing in this case (along with different lines of reason):
- Free: They were good customers, it would add goodwill (which isn't really needed at this point; they're happy with my work), and it could be considered as part of the original contracted work.
- Invoice for a percentage of my per-hour rate: I don't have any pricing models set up for a retainer rate or support work like this, and I didn't perform web design work. Therefore, how can I justifying charging the full rate to myself?
- Invoice for full per-hour rate: At the end of the day, I used time that I would be spending on another customer's work, and I shouldn't be selling myself short.
In a case such as this, what would be the best way to handle pricing for minor support issues that are possibly unrelated to the original work?
I would contend that this does not apply as a duplicate, since I did not contract the work out to a third party