Are you a beginning web designer and need to figure out how to get online without being eaten up by the competition? Read below for some helpful suggestions.
How to become a good freelance web designer?
The job of the web designer is to capture the attention of the Internet user. To do this, it is his mission to create the digital identity, the brand image, of his clients, as well as his visual identity. A web designer creates and designs the graphic charter, fonts, colors, of a company and creates websites. To do this, he must first understand the company’s needs. For example, he will have to determine if a showcase site is sufficient or if other features should be added such as an e-commerce site. To design these navigation interfaces, the web designer makes a model of the website. He plans the tree structure of the latter, as well as its functional ergonomics, so that the user experience is as pleasant as possible. His work is also very artistic since it is up to him to plan for example the visual and sound animations, the layout, the graphic elements available on this website. His job often leads him to work with computer developers and web designers. He will have to know how to follow specifications and provide models to the people working with him.
The qualities of the freelance web designer
A mixture of creativity and technique is necessary to become a good web designer. The graphic creation is at the center of his job. Several skills are essential:
Skills in graphic design, ergonomics and programming.
Web design requires a great artistic sense that allows him to build on this culture. He must be innovative and creative.
Regular monitoring of new developments: a Web designer must know the latest Web design trends, the colors that are in fashion, but also the latest software used.
Know how to communicate as a team: a web designer knows how to communicate effectively with his clients and understand their needs, but he must also know how to coordinate his work with that of his colleagues.
He must be rigorous, organized and precise. This is the main quality of the freelance web designer.
The final result must be easy to use as well as beautiful to look at, that’s the difficulty of the web designer’s work.
Aim for your passions, the rest, with a little help and the experience will come by itself. ASA certification for rich media content, is definitely a point to your credit.
1. Select the works to present to your potential clients
The advice is to include as a quality portfolio only a very select list of your work. Think of your project as a jewelry store. If you only show a few pieces of jewelry in the window, you will never be able to present yourself as a luxury store, where you can buy high-value jewelry for an exclusive and expensive gift.
2. Enrich your portfolio by working for free
Give yourself a first job, even for free, but always doing your best. Add a link in the footer of the site made with your credits, a link to your blog and your name.
3. Focused on a less competitive niche
Template development with photoshop, is more of a niche than a niche. You need to specialize in a specific area, because being only a web designer in such a competitive area may not get you anywhere, because you don’t emerge. You have to be unique and original, be recognizable and show competence, for a specific market. The theme sector for photoshop is too big, think of all the online services on the net, even from outside, that offer themes for a few dollars.
The steps to become a freelance Web designer
The training to become a freelance Web designer
The steps to become a freelance web designer are often numerous. Many schools offer 3 to 5 years of training to become a web designer. Bridges are possible to these schools following courses related to graphic design or computer technology.
It is also possible to go to university with at least a BAC + 2 with for example a :
DUT MMI, computer engineering or computer science.
BTS visual communication, audiovisual professions.
It is then better to complete your training with :
A professional license in computer science, communication techniques or in image and sound activities for example.
Or an audiovisual and multimedia license.
Following this, it will be possible to integrate Masters like:
A professional Master Arts and image technologies;
A professional Master’s degree in culture and communication.
The profession of Web designer is constantly evolving, and training modules are also to be followed throughout the career in order to keep up to date with the latest technologies.
The tools or software of the Web designer
The Web designer must be familiar with creative tools but also with web tools.
Concerning the creation, we can quote some softwares like :
In general: the Adobe suite,
There are also tools used more occasionally such as :
Typecast, for fonts,
Color code, for colors,
Flaticon, to find icons
A Web designer must also master programming and the different programming languages:
HTML / CSS,
Tools for creating websites like WordPress,
With the new skills required in SEO, the knowledge of some tools like Ahrefs or Surfer SEO will also be a plus.
How to find your first clients?
The different trainings mentioned above will allow the web designer to find a job in a web agency or directly in a company. However, to work as a freelancer, it will be essential to stand out. This is mainly done through experience. It will be easier for a freelancer who has already worked in a company to find his first clients in freelance. It should not be forgotten that many companies need help in creating a website. It is therefore quite possible to start as a freelancer. To start as a freelancer, it will be necessary to build a well-filled portfolio that will show the extent of its skills. Several platforms offer the possibility to freelance web designers to register and to detail their abilities and the expected remuneration.
Which legal status to choose ?
The web designer has many choices available to him regarding his legal status. By working in a communication agency, a web agency, an advertising agency or directly within a company, the web designer will have the status of employee. This offers many advantages such as job security, a greater chance to work on large-scale web projects. However the salary will often be lower and the organization less flexible. With experience in this type of company, the web designer can access positions with greater responsibility and offering a better salary as art director.
The advantages of the freelance web designer status
If he chooses the status of freelance web designer, several choices are available to him. Each status has its advantages and disadvantages.
– The individual company
The formalities of creation are in this case very simple and very little expensive. The profits are taxable on the income. Two systems are possible: the micro-enterprise and the auto-enterprise. To stop the activity, the formalities are again simple and inexpensive. The personal assets of the web designer are engaged in case of difficulties, except declaration of unseizability. However, it is important to note that difficulties are quite rare in the case of a freelance web designer.
– The individual company with limited liability EIRL
By opting for this status, the freelancer’s personal assets are protected in case of difficulties. The creditors can only seize the assets assigned to the professional activity. This is the main difference between the EI and the EIRL. Some additional documents are required, such as the declaration of assignment and the P form. It is also possible to opt for the IS in this case, and thus to pay dividends. To summarize, these two statutes offer significant advantages such as the simplicity of this status, both in terms of the formalities to be completed and the accounting obligations. However, they do not allow to put profits in reserve or to set up a very developed tax optimization. The association is also impossible.