Graphic designers convey information using visual mediums. You create posters, billboards, packaging, logos, and marketing material. Graphic designers typically work for magazines, advertising and marketing agencies, and so on. Most graphic designers have a bachelor’s degree in graphic design. They need to have a portfolio of work to show their creativity and originality. In this blog, we give you some tips to start your freelancing career and the best freelance websites to get started.
How to start freelance graphic designing?
1. Define your business – Before you begin your freelancing business, you need to decide your niche? Will you be a generalist or specialist? Do you prefer working with small or large firms? Will you work alone or with a team?
When you begin having a niche may help you focus better. Your niche could be the type of designs you do? Or the type of clients you want to work with? You need to decide the kind of brands you want to work with – youthful, high-end, or funky. Choosing a niche may help you define your ideal client and define your brand.
2. Take care of the legal aspects – There are several aspects to starting a business. There are business, legal, and accounting aspects to running your freelance agency. Many cities have free or low-cost business development centers that provide experts to guide you when you start your business.
3. Networking – Networking is a vital part of the business. You can tap into your primary network of friends, acquaintances, and associates. You need to attend networking events in your city. Send cold pitches to prospective clients. Study their websites to make your pitches personalized and relevant.
4. Build your online presence – A freelance graphic designer needs to have an online presence. Start building your portfolio to show prospective clients your work. Most designers have a website, design portfolio, and social media presence.
5. Use freelance websites – A freelance website is an ideal place to start looking for gigs when you begin freelancing. They are a fantastic source to get your first client. You can use the platform to scale your business, to move from your local scale to thinking globally. The freelance websites allow you to view previous contracts made by the client has made and a payment guarantee.
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10 Best Websites for Graphic Designers to Find Graphic Design work
Getting work as a freelance graphic designer should not be a constant struggle. There are specific jobs boards designed for freelancers. The best freelance websites to find graphic design work are:-
Dribble is a platform for the best design and creative professionals. Dribble allows design professionals to share their work with prospective clients. They can browse through your portfolio and contact you if they are impressed with your work.
A good Dribble profile can help you get noticed and show potential clients your capabilities. Dribble is selective and is an invite-only platform. The website is a popular platform, with clients looking for good graphic designers.
Dribble gives freelancers an easy way to indicate availability. You can flip on and off switch when required. If you upgrade to Dribble Pro, you get access to the exclusive design job board. You get a daily freelance job letter. You can interact with clients on the Dribble platform. Besides, being an excellent job board website, Dribble can help you get inspired.
Flexijobs was one of the first websites to focus on remote and flexible jobs. It is considered to be one of the best freelance websites for graphic design jobs. Flexijobs is a fantastic resource to find flexible jobs.
Flexijobs has search and filter tools to help you focus on graphic designer jobs. You can found jobs suited to your experience level.
Upwork is one of the leading freelance platforms. There are several freelance job opportunities posted there. You get job postings from small and big firms. Firms hire different freelance professionals from Upwork.
Upwork has a slight learning curve when you begin using the platform. You need to present and write an effective proposal. Initially, you may have to bid below your usual rates to build up your feedback rating. Work hard to make your proposal stand out. Once established on the platform, there is a potential for great returns. Some graphic designers get continuous work on Upwork.
Upwork has a strict review process and may reject your profile during the screening process. If there are too many graphic designer profiles, your profile may be on hold to avoid saturating the marketplace. After Upwork accepts your profile, it is one of the best freelance websites for graphic designers because there are fewer bidders for each project.
4. AIGA Design Job
The American Institute of Graphic Art (AIGA) is a professional association for designers. Most American designers are members of AIGA, the membership provides many opportunities and benefits.
Anyone can access a job posted on the website but members get better support in applying for the position. Companies wanting to hire graphic designers are expected to hire AIGA members.
Working Not Working publishes a design magazine that aims to empower with tools to grow. The platform connects professionals like writers, editors, designers, illustrators, and developers with companies looking to hire them.
WorkNotWorking of the best freelance websites for designers, who are interested in creative opportunities. Some of the best companies in the world use WorknotWorking to hire professionals. You can build your profile and showcase your work on the website. You can use the website’s advanced filters to shortlist suitable freelance work. Companies on the platform are specific about their requirements. You should read the job profile carefully before you apply. In the beginning, WorkNotWorking was an invitation-only platform but offers free signups now.
TopTal platform is similar to UpWork but is more exclusive. TopTal has a vigorous screening process and you need to show your experience in working on high-quality projects. You need to clear multiple interview rounds, skill tests, and reference checks.
Once you clear the screening process you get access to some top-quality projects which pay well. TopTal is one best freelance websites for experienced graphic designers.
Coroflot is a platform exclusively for designers. It is one of the best freelance websites; you get access to design jobs across the world. You have the opportunity to network with other graphic designers.
To use the website to look for jobs you need to sign-up, create your profile and showcase your portfolio Coroflot Pro users will get prior exclusive access to jobs posted on the forum. If the project does not get five responses, other Coroflot users can apply for a job. An excellent profile and regular participation will bolster your chances of finding gigs.
Designhill is a popular website for freelance designers. Employers create design contests where you can take part. Designhill runs hundreds of design contests held by businesses around the world.
Customers usually provide the design brief for you to understand their requirements. You can submit your design, chat with the customer, and get feedback for your work.
Customers can find out about your services through the search menu. Clients can contact you directly through chat and prepare terms of services. You can earn money safely and securely. After you create your profile you can create and list the graphic design services you want to provide. Clients will get an idea about your skill sets, your prices, and the expected timelines for delivery. DesignHill platform is flexible for designers, you can design your t-shirt, print them, and sell them on DesignHill.
99design is a freelance website that allows designers to contact businesses irrespective of their location. One of the reasons 99design has made it to the best freelance website list is it gives the opportunity to work directly with clients, increase client base and improve and expand skills.
The website allows looking for a design job in your preferred industry, style, and category. 99designs helps to fire up your creativity by running design contests. Participating in them will allow you to work with global businesses and build your professional portfolio. Use the contests to improve your skills. 99designs provides services like giving design support to regular updates.
10. Authentic Jobs
Authentic Jobs is a website geared up for freelance designers, developers, and creative professionals. It is best suited for senior-level professionals. You can find your ideal job by using the filter to look for graphic design jobs.
The website lists full-time, part-time, and freelance work. You can subscribe to their newsletter to get notified when there are new opportunities.