With the increase in technology and digital applications, freelance graphic design jobs are more plentiful than ever before. Where graphic designers were once limited to print mediums such as magazines, brochures, and printed advertisements, they can now apply skills to a variety of digital content as well. A graphic designer is charged with creating the visual and written content used to communicate information about products and topics through words, images, or info-graphs.
What Does a Freelance Graphic Design Job Entail?
● Presentation Design
● Website Design
● Graphic Design Instruction
● Logo Design
● Print Design (magazines, brochures, reports)
● Technical Design
● Art Directors
● Product or Industrial Designer
Create a Design Portfolio
The design portfolio is the centerpiece of branding for freelance graphic designers. Use the portfolio to feature your websites designs or other visual content and showcase your specialty skills. Choose your best designs and projects and update your portfolio at least every three months. When possible, host your portfolio on your own personal website. One that you did the design work on is ideal, if that’s your specialty. Use your website to show off your graphic design skills and talent. Then create a page where you link to websites where you’ve done graphic design work. This makes it easy for potential clients to see the range of your skills.
Create accounts on sites such as Behance, Dribbble, etc. These are the sites that have an SEO reputation, Google likes them, and therefore they often rank on the first page of search results. These sites are also designed for freelancers who want feedback from other designers on their projects. In order for people to hire you for their graphic design jobs, they have to know you’re out there. The best way to do that is to get your work on sites that will be seen by thousands of people who can either hire you or pass your name on to someone who will.
Where to Find Freelance Graphic Design Jobs
When it comes to graphic design, there are a lot of people out there who either want or need website templates. Very small businesses may want to save money by doing some of the work themselves or some clients may be interested in doing some of their website design work but not the behind the scenes stuff. This is where template marketplaces come in. On these template sites, clients can browse through website design templates created by various graphic designers and choose the one they like the best.
The good news is, you can design templates and make them available on the marketplace. Not only do you have a chance to sell your work in a way that brings in ongoing passive income, but your designs will be seen by tons of people who are looking at templates because they are considering or in the process of building a website.
Third party Freelance sites:
● Upwork is a great platform for beginning graphic designers to hone their skills and begin to build a reputation. You can build a profile and bid on projects for free but Upwork does get a percentage of each project you win.
● Design Inc.is a relatively new platform but it seems to become a fast favorite of both graphic designers and their clients. Keep in mind that Design Inc has a system where freelancers must pay to bid on jobs. You’ll have an upfront investment, but you’ll have higher paying clients and projects than sites like Upwork.
● AngelList is a platform where startup companies both large and small are seeking graphic design freelancers to provide necessary services to build or enhance their brand and advertising.
Other Ways to Find Freelance Graphic Design Jobs
Networking and Word of Mouth
It’s up to you to get the word out about your talent and your services. You can’t expect clients to come and seek you out. Competition for graphic design jobs is fierce and there are graphic designers lined up that can provide basic website design. You have to position yourself to stand out in the crowd. Make it easy for clients to spot you as the best among the rest.
Cold Calling and Emails
There are a plethora of businesses on the Internet with poor quality or very simple website designs. You can find freelance graphic design jobs by simply identifying some of these companies and calling or emailing them to pitch your graphic design ideas to improve their website and help them attract more customers.
One area where freelance graphic design jobs are hiding could be within your own local area. Check out the existing print and Internet advertisements for your local hair salon, auto stores, pizza places, and retail stores. Many small locally owned businesses may still be struggling with building their Internet presence to attract customers. Analyze their existing marketing efforts and pitch your ideas to improve their visual communication and help them strengthen their advertising. Many small business owners may be aware that their Internet presence is lacking and will welcome the opportunity to hire someone to handle it for them.
Build Your Reputation:
Any type of freelance work, including freelance graphic design, is built on your reputation. When you land that first project, do the absolute best work you can do. Go out of your way to give the customer an enjoyable experience and make sure when the job is finished that they are 100% satisfied with your work. Be someone who is easy to work with, always work toward a win-win solution, and remain pleasant and professional for the length of the project. Then ask them to tell their colleagues and friends about your work.
Position Yourself as an Expert
Many freelancers find that positioning themselves as an expert in their field or in a related area can not only help fill the time between client work but can also help get them in front of potential clients. If you’re a graphic designer who is passionate and knowledgeable about color scheme, style guides, or web hosting packages, help others who need that information.
To attract potential customers, you can start a blog, join a design related Facebook or LinkedIn group or even answer queries on sites like Quora or HARO. Figure out who your target audience is, what their questions are, and where they naturally go to find those answers. Then put yourself there as an expert so when they are seeking graphic design services, you’ll be the first person they think to contact.
You can be successful at finding freelance graphic design jobs by using one or several of these different tactics. Don’t be afraid to reach out and take the initiative to approach businesses and start the conversation. Mix and match until you get a system that works for you and your business. And always make sure you say on top of the latest trends in tech, gadgetry (see this) and design.