Freelance is an area that attracts both beginners and seasoned experts in professional UX / UI design agencies. It gives them the chance to learn something new by working on exciting projects. They can also earn some money on the side. However, some people dream of being a full-time freelancer while others are actively living that dream.

To properly start your freelance career, you need to prepare, do your research, and follow several guiding principles. In this article, we’ll walk you through these 7 steps for newbie freelance professionals to help you start your web design career on the right foot.

Build an overwhelming web designer career in 7 steps

Web design has exploded in the last few years and many freelancers are becoming aware of it. If this list of web designers convinces you that anyone can be successful as a freelancer, then our list of tips should inspire you to take risks for yourself and your career.

Step 1: Research costs, taxes and insurance

Career changes are jam-packed with many unknowns and variables, but you can alleviate your anxiety by researching everything you need to get started. A freelance web design career requires upfront costs, various tax forms and insurance coverage, and time requirements.

All freelance web designers need a domain name and hosting service, marketing materials, software, workspace, and subscriptions to stock photo sites or other resources. If you don’t quit your main job, you can use your existing career to slowly fund your new one.

Before going into details, you should consider whether this profession is right for you. You need to spend your free time finding clients, developing a portfolio, and working on projects. Wonder if this is the right time to change focus or if you will have to wait a little longer. Make sure that you are delaying your transition for financial or time reasons rather than fear.

Step 2: start branding

Professional freelancers will keep an eye on future branding opportunities as they start their careers. Lots of high profile clients will be paying close attention to how you market yourself via branding, so you need to get this part right. A good brand creates credibility, conveys your message and gives your customers a clear picture that your company is serious.

While the list is by no means exhaustive, most brands are made up of the following:

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Your brand not only covers who you are, but also what you offer. As a creative brand, you need to pay attention to the overall style, colors, and textures of your business.

Step 3: create a website

Building a website can be intimidating as a creative, but you need a certain place on the internet to do your job. Customers want to know what you can offer them and the best way to do that is through an online portfolio. Even if you have nothing to show you still need a website for it. To limit the time you spend coding a website, here are some things to keep in mind:

1-page portfolio

A 1-page portfolio is the easiest way to showcase your designs without confusing the customer. On the homepage, your customers can see exactly what you can offer them. However, if you offer more than one service or operate in several niches, link them from your homepage.

Contact forms

Include a contact form on your website as a pop-up and in other convenient places such as B. at the end of a blog post or a portfolio FAQ. A contact form that includes a name, email, website, and comments section will make you look more accessible, which will help you find customers.

About me / FAQ

You can save a lot of time answering the same questions by completing the About Me and FAQ section. Enter your general price range, years of experience and availability on this page. While it can limit the number of people you contact, it can also weed out uninterested customers.

Step 4: Collect templates for legal documents

To make things official, a designer needs to create some legal documents. Instead of creating them yourself, buy well-structured, legally binding templates for the following documents:

Note that these documents must be signed by the customer, otherwise they will not be held responsible for any breach of your terms. You cannot get the customer to agree to terms and conditions that are illegal in your country or state, even if they agree to do so. If you are concerned that any of your freelance documents may not be legally binding, get an attorney to review it first.

Step 5: wages, budgets, and invoicing

Deciding on your personal wage is difficult because it is difficult to determine how much we should pay ourselves. Your starting salary will be low, but you will earn significantly more as you gain more experience, industry presence, and high profile clients. Some web designers are making six-figure amounts during their sophomore year as freelancers, and it could be you if you buckle up.

To calculate the prices for your services, determine how much you will need to cover your basic living expenses and add more based on the number of clients or samples you have. If you don’t have any samples, experience, or clients, raise your salary to cover emergency expenses or budget accidents.

You can make your time budgeting easier by sticking to either of these two pricing models:

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Managing your money as a freelancer can sometimes be more difficult than deciding on a pricing model. It is easy to forget that you have to pay taxes based on your earnings and that your work is not stable at first. Track your finances with an app (like TickSpot) or in a diary.

After all, you need to create invoices for your customers. Templates are easy to find, but SimplyBill, FreshBooks, and FreeAgent offer the greatest versatility and customization.

Step 6: create a schedule

Becoming a freelancer means you can set your own schedule, but having trouble following a routine can let your clients down. A big part of working with an independent contractor is finding a schedule that suits your needs and gives you enough leeway to make up for lost days. To find out how much time it will take to complete a project, ask yourself:

How long does it take to do X?

As you design a website, write code, and retouch images, keep track of how long the process takes from start to finish. It’s a good idea to split up each service you offer by the hour so you can easily add up the number of days you spend with a customer.

How many hours a day will I work?

Freelancers don’t have to work Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 a.m. When you work best on the weekend, at night, or on 2-hour slices, create a schedule that supports it. Remember, most entrepreneurs work 60+ hours when they start building a portfolio and staying afloat.

How many days a week or a month will I work?

Planning ahead is never bad. You can easily keep track of your deadlines and payment plans with free calendar software like Google Calendar. You can also determine if you can take on an additional client or if you need to focus on an upcoming appointment.

How do I stay motivated when I don’t want to work?

We all have days when we don’t want to work, but freelancers can’t do without their clients. When you do, you produce lackluster work that can damage your reputation. To stay motivated, write down a to-do list, use a daily planner, and wake up at the same time each day. Establish a routine early in your career or you will wrestle with yourself every time you sit down to work.

Step 7: fill your website with content

Blogs are a great way to rank on search engines and gain popularity in your community. A blog is a quicker way to get an audience because it gives your users another reason to visit your website. Blogs also create communities that want to learn from you or promote your work. If you’re not interested in writing, you can make a podcast or youtube channel.

Any type of content takes time to produce; Time that you could otherwise have spent on customer work. If you’re short on time to get involved with a blog, try to post as often as possible and stick to a schedule that you can stick to. Once a month is better than breaking a commitment to your fans who have been expecting a post every other day. Remember, your blog is a marketing opportunity, not a waste of time!