If you’ve got a talent for graphic design, there are lots of clients and businesses out there who need your skills. Logos, product branding, and website graphics are highly-sought products. Perhaps you’re new to the graphic design world or maybe you want to transition from graphic design as a side-hustle to make it your full-time job. This guide has some essential tips for starting your own graphic design business.
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Get ready to bookkeep
Bookkeeping is an essential part of running a business or working as a freelancer. Graphic designers have a relatively simple business model – produce the work and get paid for it. But it’s still important that you are prepared to do the necessary accounting. Investigate software services that provide simple invoicing for small business so that you can automate this process and avoid making mistakes.
Find and showcase your clients
Clients and businesses looking for graphic designers want to see examples of their work and great testimonials. If you haven’t worked for anyone yet, it could be worth doing some cheap or voluntary work for a couple of clients to get you off the ground. You can also look at graphic design job boards online such as SolidGigs and 99Designs.
If you have already started doing graphic design work, use this work in your portfolio and ask your past clients for testimonials to showcase on your website and social media.
Create an attractive website
If you’re offering graphic design services, your business website must look great. If not, clients may not think you could contribute to an attractive website for them too. Use your own branding and designs across the website and, if need be, hire a freelance web designer to handle the back-end parts of the site.
A graphic design business website should include a portfolio, client testimonials, contact details, and a list of services you provide along with prices. Clients could be put off if you don’t list your prices, so you’re better off being transparent from the outset.
Get your pricing right
Speaking of prices, getting your pricing right is vital if you want to run a successful graphic design business. The first step is to research your competitors. How much are graphic designers charging and can you undercut them? When you start out, you might need to offer low prices anyway. As your business grows and you start getting regular clients, you can up your prices.
Be reliable and communicative
Clients can be fussy and deadlines might be tight, but delivering high-quality content on time that meets your client’s expectations is the backbone of any graphic designer’s success. Communicate as much as possible with the client and send them early drafts of work as you go to ensure they don’t turn around saying they are unhappy with the finished product. Be sure not to take on too much work either. If clients start flooding in, it will be tempting to say yes to everyone. But if you can’t deliver work on time, the clients will disappear as quickly as they arrived.