How to choose a freelance web designer
5 January 2017
If you are thinking about using a freelance web designer, here are a few tips on how to choose one.
Why use a freelance web design?
Freelance web designers are often cheaper and more flexible than large design agencies. Many freelancers do ad-hoc work in their spare time and most will have a permanent full-time role in either a design agency or in-house team. You can benefit from their commercial experience and expertise at a much cheaper hourly rate.
Pros and cons of using a freelance web designer explained.
Freelancers are often able to accommodate much smaller budgets than large agencies. Agencies often have a minimum price for projects which is not the case with freelancers. They are flexible with timescales and the overall experience is usually a lot more personal. Freelancer web designers often only take on a couple of small projects at a time. You get more 1-2-1 time with your designer to discuss ideas and requirements. You can explore things like payment via the exchange of services with freelancers a lot more easily than with agencies.
Most freelancers don’t have the security and clout of a large organisation so they may ask for project payment upfront. Expect to pay a deposit of some kind at the very least. This shows willing on both sides and helps to create a positive and trusting relationship between you and your designer. Freelancers often have other commitments so make sure you outline timescales and check your designer can deliver the project when you need it. Flexibility can work both ways and freelance web designers are often more suitable for projects without hard deadlines.
Where to find your freelance web designer
Firstly, do a quick Google search for freelancers in your local or regional area. If you are looking for particular service such as a WordPress website, make sure to include that in your search. Once you find a few sites, have a browse through the persons’ recent projects and look at testimonials or reviews from previous clients.
If they offer case studies, check those out as they can often provide proof of how successful the project was. Search for the person on social media, Twitter and Facebook can give a good idea of what the person might be like (personality, etc.). LinkedIn is a great resource for verifying that person’s qualifications and previous experience.
Almost every freelance will have some sort of ‘request a quote‘ action on their site. Make sure you use this, freelance designers are often happy to give an idea of costs, chat through your ideas and give you some direction.
I am always happy to meet potential clients for a coffee and chat about their project before any commitments are made. Often talking to freelancer’s face-to-face is the best way to decide if they are someone you want to work with. It also gives me the chance to explain the process and services I offer.