Freelancing

Tips for becoming a full-time web design freelancer

Deciding to go full-time with your web design freelancing is a big decision. No doubt, you’ve given this some real thought and understand the benefits that full-time freelancing can bring: an improved work-life balance; the ability to set your own hours and be your own boss; the freedom to decide who you want to work with and how much money you want to make; and the chance to do interesting work that you love.

If you want to make a go of it as a full-time web designer, here are a few tips that will help you make your dreams a reality.

Find a niche

Success in freelancing is much easier if you can figure out how to make yourself stand out from the crowd. One of the simplest ways to accentuate your valuable differences is to establish yourself in a niche or a specialty.

To find your niche, ask yourself a few questions:

  • What types of projects do you prefer working on?
  • What kind of clients do you enjoy working with?
  • What kind of clients do you hate working with?
  • Is there are particular industry you like to work with?
  • What types of web design problems are you particularly good at handling?

In the end, it will be much easier for you to sell yourself and your new freelancing business if you can tell people that you are a web designer who specializes in something versus a general web designer who isn’t really an expert in anything.

Build your personal brand

A large part of your success will come as a direct result of your ability to get your name out there and establish yourself as an expert in your niche. Social media gives freelancers a way to connect with prospects in a way that feels natural and casual. And it’s free.

You can certainly advertise if you want to. Many professional freelancers have had great success from things like Facebook advertising and Google ads. In the beginning, however, you may be better off advertising on job boards like Gumtree. Gumtree is versatile — you can use it as a job seeker to connect with people who are in need of your skills. And you can post an ad offering your services. Win – win.

Build your portfolio

A great portfolio is going to be the foundation that you will build your new career on. Your portfolio — preferably online at your own domain — is the way that you will show off your skills to potential clients. It can also be a handy reference for prospective clients, as well. They’ll quickly be able to get a feel for your style and it will give them a sense of whether or not you would be the right web designer for their project.

You should consider your freelance website an extension of your portfolio. Make it some of your best work. Whatever you do, make sure you add contact information to your website in a prominent place where prospects are sure to find it.

Consider adding a blog to your website. Even though you are a web designer and not a blogger, your blog is a way for you to talk about what you do and show people your skills. It is a way of connecting with people and getting them to appreciate you as an expert in your field.

Blogging is also a valuable source of SEO which can entice the search engines to send you some love in the form of prospects who are searching for people with your skills.

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