Enter the (Rate) Matrix: The Services Price Themselves

Published on May 2, 2017

Imagine a world where your services price themselves.

Too good to be true? Does it sound like something out of a sci-fi movie?

It's 100% real - and it's called "the Rate Matrix."

This tool (which you already have if you're a Member of Service Autopilot) will save your business hours of time, every week.

Enter the (Rate) Matrix, and see how it works:

Why Enter the (Rate) Matrix?

A rate matrix is, essentially, a "table of rates." This table looks at a number field, stored on the client, to determine the rate.

This other number field can be anything:

  • number of bushes
  • length of driveway
  • property square footage

You set these up as Custom Fields, which I’ll explain more fully below. For now, you only need to know that the rate matrices look at these fields.

The rate matrix is based on a range (for example, your range could be "0-1000 square feet," and your rate could be $100).

This means that any value between 0 and 1000 from the custom field will cause the job’s rate to be set at $100.

You can set as many of these ranges as you need.

When you create a job using the service, as long as there is a value in the custom field, the service will price itself. No consultation with sticky notes or calculators necessary.

How to Create Custom Fields

Custom fields are where you store the square footage (or whatever number you need to store). To set these up to appear on every client, you'll go to:

CRM > Settings > Custom Fields

Click on "Add Custom Field" and fill out the required fields. The most important field here, other than a name you'll recognize, is "Value Type." The Value Type must be set to number in order to use the field with a rate matrix.

Using Your Custom Field

On any client, click "Edit." On the tab labeled "Custom Fields," fill out the appropriate information.

In the picture below you can see the field we just set up, filled out on the client.

Now that we've created our custom fields, we're ready to set up our first rate matrix.

How to Create a Rate Matrix

Step 1: Go to Scheduling > Settings > Services > (the service you want to edit)

Step 2: Click on the “Rate Matrix” tab

Step 3: Set the Calculation to “Qty x Rate x Visits”

Step 4: Create Ranges - from X to Y charge $Z

Step 5: Fill the last row -
This one can be a little confusing. Here’s how it works:

Every [number] over [last range’s upper limit] is $ [additional dollar charge] more and [fraction of hour] more time with an additional cost (to you) of $ (dollar amount).

So, if you set it for: “Every 1 over 30 is $1 more and .1 more time with an additional cost of $1”

And set the custom field for 31, the rate will be set to $51, the budgeted hours will be 1.85 and the cost will be $12.50.

Set rate matrices on your services accurately and you’ll increase your efficiency in the system by leaps and bounds.

Want to burn more rubber (and make more money)? Combine rate matrices with Estimate Templates.

Your quoting + estimating process will be so fast, your competitors will think you're guzzling jet fuel.

Cody Owen

Cody is a copywriter with Service Autopilot. He was writing before he could read, dictating stories to his mom. Of late, he distills business principles and practices learned from his ever-increasing trove of books and his year with SA Support into digestible blog posts designed to provide maximum value to service industry business owners.


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