Are you a budding web designer looking for ways to start your own business?
Heard Enough about starting web design as a business, but not finding proper action steps to start with?
If yes, then this is the right place for you to clear all your doubt. we will tell you HOW.
Before paving down the road map to successful freelance web design let us clear the concept of freelancing first.
Are you ‘Really’ ready to take it as a business? Is Freelancing going to be fun or fear? Lets find out.
A. Freelance Web Design: Start Making Your Own Way
Before entering into the world of freelance web designing, designers must clearly understand the concept of it. The joy of self-employment along with some hard cash is one of the important reasons why people take up free lancing. Freelancing, though enjoyable it seems, is not so. So before taking up this occupation you must be prepare yourself full time freelancing. Here’s a head start that may provide you enough guidance in becoming a professional and a freelance web designer.
B. Do The Necessary Research: Lets Do a Preview Check
The first and the foremost thing one should do before going into any business is to do some extensive research about that particular field. This also needs to be done before taking up freelance web designing as a profession.
The amount of money required for the full completion of the project is the first task a web designer must take. This will help you to calculate your overall profit and also assist you to reduce some extra costs, if any. Costs may include
- Doman name and various hosting services
- Business cards, advertisement cost, hardware working material etc. and other marketing material.
- A list of legal software in which you will operate.
- Workspace and its supplies.
- Subscriptions to other websites and other resources.
ii. Taxes and Insurance
Along with self-employment, comes a huge list of taxes which you will need to pay to the government. Research about the present taxation laws and make sure that you are prevented from government intervention. You will also need to insure your freelancing business with insurance policies. Make sure you take up the best suitable insurance policy for protection.
You need to determine the amount of time that you can give for your freelancing career. Look upon all the areas in your life and then start calculation. Schedule your time in which you can gather your full concentration in your freelancing design career. Since you have no projects in hand now, make sure you do the calculation for maximum limitation.
C. Start Your Own Brand Building: Lets Get into The Market
Brand building is one of the most important aspects of becoming a successful freelance web designer. You need to create a place for yourself in the world of web designing.
Branding a one man business operation can take your business to a new level. Credibility, customer loyalty, customer satisfaction etc. are some of the areas in brand building in which you have to work upon. Building a good and respected brand will not only help you gain more customers but it will also aid you in creating marketing strategies.
The names of the freelancing business can signify a lot about your work. You can either give your own name or you can think of an official name. Selecting a name depends upon your future goals, type of business, etc. Both of them have their pros and cons. So depending on the operation of business, type of clients you want to attract and future goals you can give any name.
A successful web designer will always have a Business Logo which acts as a brand for them. You must also create a business logo that will help you to create an image that aids recognition.
iii. Elevator Pitch
An Elevator pitch is a well thought introduction of your business that reflects your portfolio. An elevator pitch is used by a variety to people to introduce them attractively. For being a successful freelance web designer you need to have an excellent elevator pitch which reflects your portfolio, type of work you do and your attitude towards this business.
Advertise your business with business cards and letter heads which should reflect your personality and your kind of work.
D. Create A Portfolio Site: Lets Build Your Brand
Creating a portfolio website is the most obvious task a freelance web designer must complete, but with utmost care. Think about the significance of your portfolio as client will see your portfolio as your work. So design it very carefully.
Understand the importance of your portfolio and then start designing it accordingly.
- It reflects your brand as a web designer.
- It shows the capability of web designer about his/her knowledge.
- A professional portfolio is always preferable than a non-professional one.
- Attracts potential clients.
A web designer’s portfolio should be his/her best work. Keeping these things in mind, you may start designing your portfolio.
ii. Things to consider
There are certain things which you need to consider before creating or modifying a design portfolio.
- One-page portfolio – Always try to make a one page portfolio for your clients. This might not be possible for those you offer more than web designing services. This is also called as direct response marketing.
- Use a contact form – You must always provide a traditional email address and other information, but remember include an email form. This makes it easier for the client to contact with the designer.
- Make your work noticeable – The important parts of your portfolio such as contact information, logo and design should be easily visible on the website.
E. Build Legit Documents: Lets go Legal
Every piece of work has to be official, so you need to make official documents before undergoing any contracts, bonds.
A freelance web designer must always make a contract between him and the clients. This contract lists some legal rules and guidelines which both the party should agree. Contracts help in solving future legal dispute problems, if any. Know how to make a contract for prevention from future problems.
ii. Terms & Conditions
It is very important to read the terms and conditions before signing any contract. The terms and conditions on the contract should be mutually acceptable.
iii. Copyright Agreement
Designers are always in fear that their piece creativity might be stolen or discredited. Copyright agreement is a way to avoid that. It is important to research about the copyright laws and agreements to make sure that your work is preserved with you.
F. Starting Wage & Budget: Lets See What You Have For Investment
It is very difficult to find a starting wage for ourselves. A freelance web designer should aim not get a lot at start but just to meet your expenses. A little bit of extra money can be put aside just for emergency purposes.
A fixed price project is a project in which the designer and the client agrees beforehand about the cost of design. The designer is independent of the amount of time within which he needs to deliver the project.
- These types of projects can be easier to apply on a monthly budget.
- If the designer cannot complete the work efficiently within less time, his cost will not be reduced.
- Helps to determine profits and budget handling.
- Very difficult to determine the cost of the project before completing it.
- Some designers may underestimate the difficulty of the project and might be underpaid.
- Payments do not come in regular intervals of time.
Hourly wage work is the normal kind of work which we all do. Designers are paid accordingly depending upon the amount of work completed.
- Easier budgeting
- Very difficult to get over or under paid.
- Very easy to estimate the final cost of project.
- Difficult to determine the hourly rate.
- Difficult to work with a monthly budget.
- Timesheets needs to be to and fro with the web designer and client.
Web designers must know about all the online tools available for managing their money. Various time and budget management tools are available to manage your money.
G. Create a Resume Now: Lets List Out Your Expertise
A strong resume can be built in order to compensate for not so strong portfolio. Web designer’s resume may be his last chance to show his skills, abilities and qualification to convince the clients.
H. Portfolio Building Clients: Lets Find Them Out
Since you are new to the market, it will be a great difficulty to find good, well-paying clients. Finding the first clients was and is the most difficult task for any newbie. Newbie web designers should find their first “portfolio building clients.
Working for free is never fun. But to publicize your work you may have to do it. Offer free services to non-profit organizations. This will help increase your popularity and some potential money-paying clients may get attracted.
ii. Advertise Locally
Put up fliers or ads in some local newspaper to get you some recognition. Not every potential client searches internet for web designing services. Some also look in newspapers, see some fliers etc.
iii. Offer Freebies and Sell Templates
This mode of client collection actually requires no client at all. Just make some templates, advertise their services and sell them to earn income.
I. Client Management: Lets Find Out Tools For Them
Make yourself acquaint with the tools for client management which helps you to share files, make notes, assigns tasks and organize your work. Read more
J. Schedule Your Work: Lets Create a Schedule & Stick To It
An efficient web designer always creates a schedule to complete his/her work in time. Depending upon all the needs and daily considerations web designers create schedule. It is one of the important tasks to complete for becoming a professional freelance web designer. Read more
i. Find the necessary hours
Depending upon the knowledge of each web designer and taking all the aspects into account determine the number of hours you would put daily to work and only work. Previous client projects and sample templates can help you give a rough estimate. Dividing the tasks and completing it within time help you to complete your project easily.
ii. Daily Schedule
Make a daily schedule of your work life, depending on your life style. It will help you to complete your day to day tasks and keep you in track.
iii. Weekly and monthly schedule
Try making a weekly and monthly schedule to meet out deadlines of the project.
Learn about the various time management tools available online.
K. Lets Create a Business Plan
One of the most boring and tedious tasks is to make a business plan. But without a business plan, a business cannot prosper. You need to think about the future, your goals, and your desires. Read more
L. Find Work: Lets Look Out For The Places To Find Work
You as an entrepreneur and a newbie do not expect that clients should come and ask for your work. You yourself need to find your work. Think about the places where you can find your work. You can also start a cold email campaign to recognize your work. Read more
M. Make Your Online Presence Felt: Lets Market Yourself
Tell the world that “I am here”. Read more
- Internet is the best medium where you can market yourself. So carefully program your online presence and then execute it.
- Sharing some knowledge of your expertise will definitely gain you some recognition.
- Make use of social networks and expand your friend list.
- Have some uniqueness so that you can be recognized from a pool of applicants.
- Blogging can help you gain recognition but make sure your blogs represent your quality of work.
- Choose your audience to whom you want to target and find you niche in this business.
- Get into the community of freelance web designers for identification of your work.
- Attend various conferences where you can market your web designing business.
- Find free online advertising tools so that you can advertise you and work that too for free.
- Make yourself Google able.
N. Lets Get a Professional Space
O. Dealing With Clients: Lets Find Out How
- Put aside your ego while you are with a client and avoid ego clashes between you and your client.
- Dealing with the client is an important task and one should know how to deal with them.
- The entire process which starts with the client calling the designer up to the full payment of webs designer must be known.
- Customer service is one service that can make or break your reputation in the market. Honor your client for who he is and be consistent with your work. Follow the rule of “Honesty is the best Policy” and be honest with the clients.
- Make rules for your clients to follow so that there will be no chance of inconvenience.
- Clients can not be as you expect them always. You should be blunt enough to fire them and know how to fire a bad client. Read more
P. Money! Money! Money! Lets Make Some Money!
Do not overestimate or underestimate yourself, otherwise may take advantage of you. Therefore price your services accordingly. Reinvest your income is some latest software. Reinvesting is mainly done if you have a future plan of expanding your business.
Q. Lets Manage Your Projects & Finance Efficiently
If you are in a profession then behave like a professional. Manage your projects, tasks, jobs, assignments professionally. Do not be frivolous and care free. Price your products and services appropriately. know the techniques of reinvesting your income.
R. Lets Look Around What Your Competitors Are Doing!
Keep yourself up to date with the current trend of the freelance web designing market and follow the latest tricks.
That’s it.You are done! Now Start living your dream!