how to start freelance graphic design business: feature image
Career Graphic Design

Freelance Graphic Design Business

Since the Internet apparition, people could access any information they desired. The World Wide Web is where everything seems possible, and it is a resource you should take advantage of to improve yourself.

Some people use the Internet without a purpose, thus becoming just a method to waste time and defocus from your actual tasks. This is why it is essential to know what you can do with the help of this never-ending resource.

If you are tired of following rules at work or waking up in the morning just so you spend eight hours a day in a company, there is one thing that could entirely change your life – freelancing.

The Internet is frequently used for all sorts of purposes; it is visible in almost everyone’s lives. Using it for personal purposes is quite common, but more and more people have started to make the Internet a great professional resource. Almost 30 percent of the working-age population is engaged in independent work.

The tricky part is that not all domains are suitable for freelancing. Because it involves working over the Internet and digitally delivering the final product, freelancing is limited to several fields of work.

how to start freelance graphic design business: freelancer drawing

Generally, IT services are the most searched for. The existence of platforms such as or allows clients to communicate effectively and obtain what each of them desires.

Jobs are sectioned into categories so freelancers can easily choose the one suitable for their skills.

This year, the domains that are in demand include high-quality photography, managing inventories, overseeing accounts, content writing, Search Engine Optimization, branding, compliance managing, and graphic design.

This article will focus on graphic design and give you some ideas on how to start your own freelance business in this domain.

Here’s the list:

Step One: Freelance Graphic Design Business Plan

Composing a freelance graphic design business plan and investing in your portfolio represent the beginning of your journey.

Start by gathering all of your work together and composing a beautiful portfolio. Your portfolio is your ticket to being selected for a job.

Most freelancing platforms include a system where you bid for the projects, so you’ll compete with many other people looking for the same thing as you do – making money and delivering quality work. Staying out by using your portfolio and bringing something new to the picture is essential. It would be best if you had some previously completed projects to build a portfolio as a graphic designer.

At first, gaining clients by applying without a complex profile may be difficult. It would be recommended to work for friends and family pro bono, to use school projects that obtained high grades in the past, and volunteer at non-profit design companies.

Do this long before starting your freelancing journey, as you must be prepared when you want to start applying to projects.

Since you are a graphic designer, you might want to create eye-pleasing content that will impress anyone who visits your profile. Give your absolute best – the first opinion matters the most.

Step Two: Get Experience

Once you think you’re ready to impress people with your work, start applying to various projects. As a beginner freelancer, you should apply to urgent projects where not many people bid.

You have a higher chance of getting selected if you stand out from a smaller crowd. Don’t be greedy for now – focus on small, approachable projects. You have to prove your worth to someone and get a good review.

From there, everything will become much easier than before. Once people see that you have good reviews, they will choose you over other freelancers.

The key to being selected faster is to write good proposals. Mention the goals you included in your freelance graphic design business plan for the best results.

girl writing business proposals

The moment you bid, state all your skills so the client can know what he should expect. Freelancers in the industry for a long time won’t write proposals simply because they rely on their reviews.

Graphic designers should mention the following skills in their bio or proposals:

  • Good communication skills
  • Respecting deadlines
  • Curiosity and flexibility
  • Ability to accept criticism
  • Solving urgent problems quickly
  • Reliability
  • Creativity
  • Technical knowledge

Step Three: Pricing Your Services

This is an issue that many freelance graphic designers have to deal with. When you first bid on projects, you might tend to bid at a lower price than the average.

Sometimes, this can be considered an excellent strategy to attract clients, but other times, you can make them rethink their options because your bid is too low. Depending on how long it will take to complete the project, how well you think you can handle it, and how much research is necessary, you have to set a reasonable price for your services.

If you know you have enough experience to handle more significant projects and your portfolio is impressive enough to attract clients, you don’t have to work for pennies. Value your time and know your worth; compare your services and portfolio with the other freelancers bidding, and you might have a pleasant surprise.

freelance service pricing

No matter what you do, respect deadlines, and specialize in a particular niche. The graphic design contains a variety of subcategories, and you need to choose only one and be the best at it. Remember to mention what technology you know working with.

Most searched-for are:

  • Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign
  • UI/UX experience
  • Print Design
  • Branding
  • Basic HTML

Step Four: Communication

Stating exactly what you can do and letting your client know what to expect is paramount in freelancing.

Because you will only communicate with your client via the platform, social media, mail, or phone, you must learn how to use words.

In graphic design, updating your customers and constantly asking for feedback is crucial. As mentioned before, sudden changes are pretty often in freelancing, and you need to be prepared and flexible when they occur.

Your client’s opinion may differ from yours, but the goal is to respect the exact requirements you were given. Don’t risk finishing a project and starting it from the beginning – ask for feedback. Respond promptly to all messages you receive, and don’t hesitate to edit your work if your customer is not pleased with the outcome.

Communicating effectively is the key to delivering the expected outcome. Asking for references after you complete a project is also recommended, and positive reviews will lead to more projects and – eventually – more money.

Step Five: Legal Matters

Each country has specific regulations when it comes to freelancing.

You have to pay attention to the terms and conditions of the freelancing platform you use to notice what commission the website assigns for each project and learn more about transactions.

Being a freelancer means you must be organized and plan everything. Graphic design jobs are well-paid, and this is the main reason why you might want to learn some things about managing finances and paying all the taxes.

Follow your freelance graphic design business plan, and everything should appear exactly as you expected.

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