You just graduated and while waiting for an official job, you decided to do freelance works. And your expertise is web designing. It could be exciting at first, knowing you will earn from something that you love to do, or at least within the field that you have focused on when you were still a student.
Building websites as a hobby versus making it an income generating endeavor are two totally different things. You need to think of things like how will you charge your clients or how do you market your web design services.
Here I want to talk about some basic guidelines for starters like you:
Know what you are getting into. Before you even assess the web design services you will offer, ask yourself, can you commit to the clients needs? Remember, you are no longer “playing”, you are working, and your clients will be your bosses.
Evaluate the project before you accept it. Talk to your clients and find out what their expectations from you are. How many pages do they want? What do they want to see on the website? How much time will it require you to finish the items they wanted? Whats the degree of complexity? When are they expecting completion? Depending on the answers to these questions, you can estimate the project duration you will commit and the price you will charge.
Pricing usually depends on the complexity of work and time involved. Your level of expertise is also another factor. Web design services done by professionals are usually charged higher compared to those done by starters. The unspoken rule is, the more web design experience you have, the more you can charge.
Time is also of the essence. If the client demands urgent completion, then you can charge higher as this may require more of your time or assistance of more than one designer. If the client also demands maintenance services, which could mean prolonged accountability, then you can arrange a “per term” scheme (package for a certain time period).
Assess the current market. Get to know how much a starter freelancer usually charges per project. Use this information as your baseline.
Never commit to a project that you cannot accomplish. Sure you want to earn, and you want to prove something. But always remember that as a starter, you would want your clients to recall how great work partner you are. Never cause disappointment due to missed deadlines. Your clients are your first and your best marketers.