Making money online is easier if you know what to do and how to do it, but it is hard if you believe everything you read on the internet. Don’t be fooled by those articles that tell you it is possible to make a lot of money with blogging or affiliate marketing overnight. While it is possible, it necessitates a significant amount of effort, time, and money to make it happen. If you are ready for all of these, then go ahead.
However, if you are considering taking the path of selling your services of designing websites, then you can do it pretty well by starting to learn website design on the web-based platforms that let you take an online course related to website design and others for free. You can also use free website builders, CMSes such as WordPress, or even buy a gig on Fiverr to resell it to your clients (if you do not know how to design a website and do not want to learn the skill either).
But it is always good to learn the skill for yourself if you want to build a career in this field or start a website design agency, in order to get an idea of various aspects of website design, such as how much time it takes and what the costs involved are. It also gives you a competitive advantage over your competitors with a non-technical background.
After deciding how you are going to get the job done, the first step is to find clients who want your service. With social media sites prevalent in every sector of life these days, it has become much easier to find prospective clients for any business, but this is the very reason that has made the competition fierce too. You can join various Facebook groups related to website design, where people looking for website designers post their requirements.
You have to be prompt and provide additional value, such as building a demo page for free or including more features in your plan, especially if you are just starting out as a website designer. Then you can start designing the website using CMSes like Joomla, WordPress, or other technologies you know.
You might need to have access to resources such as fonts, icons, logos, etc., for which you can use free online platforms to download the respective assets. But if you choose to outsource the job, it is essential to know which platform is best for you. There are a number of providers that give you access to freelancers willing to do it, such as Freelancer, UpWork, Fiverr, etc.
Using third-party website builders is a kind of middle ground between designing websites yourself and hiring a freelance designer to do the job for your client. You do not need to have technical skills, but you have to get your own hands dirty by fitting together the elements of a website for yourself.
The benefits and drawbacks of pursuing a career in website design
There are always advantages and disadvantages to everything in this world, and so is the case when you decide to earn your living through website design. The main advantage of this job or business is that it has good future potential since it is relatively new even today, which is also the reason that there is good pay for it. Furthermore, you can do this job from anywhere if you know how to do it.
The main disadvantage of this relatively new career is that you need to have some idea of how the process of designing a website works. For example, it is not like selling a product or service once and then it is done. You will almost always get some feedback from the first design and then have to modify or add some features, functionalities, or design elements based on the inputs of the clients.
At other times, you also need to post the contents of the site in order to show what the finalized site looks like with real content. And this becomes a lengthy process if the contents are not ready. So, you should always make it clear what the client is expecting and what you are offering in terms of price and time duration mentioned in the contract or agreement.
Payment and after-sales services
The best payment term is to split it into three phases: the first payment before starting the work, the second payment after the preliminary draft of the website is shown to the client, and the third one after the handover of the final website. You can also set the payment into two parts: at the start of the design and after its completion, or even a one-time payment after the site design is over if the client is trustworthy.
You, as a website designer or an agency, always feel that the client is adding new requirements every time you show them the modified version of the website, and the client has a feeling that there is always something to be done, such as changing the font size or button placement. It is therefore essential to make your client clear of what you are offering at the price you mentioned and what incurs extra cost to the client.
It is an unavoidable fact that your clients’ needs will change over time, as no business remains the same indefinitely. This also demands that you add, remove, or make changes to the website that was built some time ago. Also, renewing the domain name, making payments to the hosting provider, adding contents or pages, and other work are part of the after sales service of the website design business.
All in all, website design as a career or business has high demand and, at the same time, is a bit different than a traditional job. Hence, you have to be a bit creative as well as careful while choosing website design as your profession, especially when very few of your clients are aware of the process of getting a website designed for their business.